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Robert SCHUMANN (1810-56)
Lieder to Poems by Heinrich Heine

Liederkreis, Op. 24 (1840). Die beide Grenadiere, Op. 49 No. 1 (1840). Der arme Peter, Op. 53 No. 3 (1840). Lieder und Gesänge, Op. 127 – No. 2, Dein Angesicht; No. 3, Es leuchtet meine Liebe. Gesänge, Op. 142 (1840) – No. 2, Lehn deine Wang’; No. 4, Mein Wagen rolet langsam. Myrthen, Op. 25 (1840) – No. 7, Die Lotosblume; No. 21, Was will die einsame Träne; No. 24, Was will die einsame Trane. Tragödie, Op. 64 No. 3. Abends am Strand, Op. 45 No. 2 (1840). Das feindlichen Bruder, Op. 49 No. 2 (1840). Balsazar, Op. 57 (1840). Tragödie, Op. 64 No. 3 (1841).
Stephan Genz (baritone); Christoph Genz (tenor) (Op. 64 No. 3); Claar ter Horst (piano).
Rec. Tonstudio van Geest, Sandhausen/Heidelberg in December 1996, February and April 1997. DDD
CLAVES CD50-9708 [58.46’]
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Peter Härtling, in his perceptive accompanying booklet notes for this release, refers to Schumann’s ‘Romantic symbiosis’ of poetry and music. Indeed, the songs in the present collection seem to demonstrate this concept to perfection, representing the ideal meeting of two minds of genius, Robert Schumann and Heinrich Heine.

Baritone Stephan Genz has studied the Lied with the best: Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau and Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, not to mention Mitsuko Shirai and Hartmut Höll. And it shows. He possesses an extremely beautiful instrument in his voice, which is marvellously flexible and capable of catching subtle nuances of meaning in these Lieder. He captures the tender restraint of the question, ‘Will my beloved come today?’ in the first song of the Op. 24 Liederkreis to perfection (TRACK 1), which contrasts well with the declamatory second song. His realisation of the simplicity of the seventh song, ‘Berg und Burgen schaun herunter’, a truly lovely piece, is a wonder: it is, indeed, an achievement to convey the requisite sense of peace in this manner (TRACK 7). Claar ter Horst is an exemplary accompanist, whose warm sound and careful elucidation of textures support Genz in whatever he does.

The popular ‘Die beiden Grenadiere’ acts as useful contrast to Liederkreis. Genz really seems to be enjoying himself here (TRACK 10). Both Genz and Horst rise to the more technically challenging songs, as in the turbulent ‘Lehn deine Wang’, Op. 142 No. 2.

As an added bonus tenor Christoph Genz joins the duo in ‘Tragödie’, Op. 64 No. 3: their voices are exquisitely matched. Recording is faultless, as are the production values of the product as a whole. Very, very strongly recommended.

Colin Clarke


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Liederkreis, Op.24:
Morgens steh' ich auf und frage

Es treibt mich hin

Ich wandelte unter den Baumen

Lieb' liebchen, leg's Handchen

Schone Wiege meiner Leiden

Warte, Warte, wilder Schiffmann

Berg' und Burgen schaun herunter

Anfangs wollt' ich fast verzagen

Mit myrten und Rosen, lieblich und hold

Die beiden Grenadiere

Der Hans und die Grete tanzen herum

Der arme Peter:
In meiner Brust, da sitz ein Weh

Der arme Peter wankt vorbei

Dein Angesicht

Lehn deine Wang'

Es leuchtet meine Liebe

Myrten, Op.25:
Was will die einsame Trane

Die Lotosblume

Du bist wie eine Blume

Abends am Strand

Die feindlichen Bruder


Tragodie, Op.64 Nr.3:
Entflieh mit mir und sei mein Weib

Es fiel ein Reif in der Fruhlingsnacht

Auf ihrem Grab, da steht eine Linde

Mein Wagen rollet langsam

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