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CD: Crotchet
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Richard STRAUSS (1864–1949)
Rote Rosen - Lieder
1. Rote Rosen, AV 76 (1883) [2:14]
2. Malven, AV 304 (1948) [2:58]
3. Leises Lied, Op. 39 No. 1 (1897-1898) [3:05]
4. Junghexenlied, Op. 39 No. 2 (1897-1898) [2:39]
5. Cäcilie, Op. 27 No. 2 (1894) [2:03]
6. Befreit, Op. 39 No. 4 (1897-1898) [5:22]
Drei Lieder der Ophelia, Op. 67 (1918) [8:02]
7. I. Wie erkenn ich mein Treulieb vor andern nun? [2:54]
8. II. Guten Morgen, 's ist Sankt Valentinstag [1:13]
9. III. Sie trugen ihn auf der Bahre bloß [3:47]
10. Allerseelen, Op. 10 No. 8 (1885) [3:05]
11. Ich schwebe, Op. 48 No. 2 (1900) [2:10]
12. Muttertändelei, Op. 43 No. 2 (1899) [2:28]
13. Einerlei, Op. 69 No. 3 (1918) [2:17]
14. Schlechtes Wetter, Op. 69 No. 5 (1918) [2:24]
15. Das Rosenband, Op. 36 No. 1 (1897-1898) [2:54]
16. Hat gesagt – bleibt’s nicht dabei, Op. 36 No. 3 (1897-1898) [2:21]
17. All mein’ Gedanken, Op. 21 No. 1 (1889-1890) [1:12]
18. Du meines Herzens Krönelein, Op. 21 No. 2 (1889-1890) [2:02]
19. Meinem Kinde, Op. 37 No. 3 (1897-1898) [2:31]
20. Mein Auge, Op. 37 No. 4 (1897-1898) [3:01]
21. Morgen! Op. 27 No. 4 (1894) [4:00]
Camilla Tilling (soprano); Paul Rivinius (piano); Ulf Wallin (violin)(Morgen!)
rec. January 2008, Nybrokajen 11 (former Academy of Music), Stockholm, Sweden
Sung texts with English translations enclosed
BIS-SACD-1709 [59:10]


Experience Classicsonline

Just recently I reviewed a Strauss recital with the Danish soprano Inger Dam-Jensen. Now here comes a similar recital with another fairly young Scandinavian soprano, Swedish Camilla Tilling. I had the pleasure to engage her for a couple of concerts with the local symphony orchestra and chamber music society more than ten years ago, when she was at the very outset of her professional career. That career quickly gained momentum after her debut as the Queen of the Night in Gothenburg in 1997. Appearances at Covent Garden, the Metropolitan, La Scala, Chicago, San Francisco, Paris and the festivals at Aix-en-Provence and Glyndebourne and a busy schedule as concert and recital artist has endeared her to a wide audience and she has also appeared in a number of major recording projects but this recital is her first solo album.

Like her Danish colleague she wanders occasionally off the beaten track and actually lays out her toils even wider, opening the programme with the early Rote Rosen from 1883, followed by Malven, written sixty-five years later and unearthed only in 1982, when it was found among soprano Maria Jeritza’s papers and subsequently premiered by Kiri Te Kanawa in 1985. She also includes the three Ophelia songs from 1918 and also two of the Op. 69 songs from the same year, written with Elisabeth Schumann’s voice in mind.

Not having heard Camilla Tilling in the flesh for some years – I think it was in Beethoven’s ninth symphony – it was a pleasure to note that the freshness and beauty of the voice is as tangible as before and she has no doubt matured further and acquired more ‘bite’ which enables her to express a wide range of emotions. The first two songs, juxtaposing both ends of Strauss’s compositional career, are sung with suitable simplicity. I have long treasured Kiri Te Kanawa’s recording of Malven, and returning to the song now confirms what a beautiful creation it is. Leises Lied and Junghexenlied, both from Op. 39, are relative rarities and Ms Tilling sings the former with the sense of an explorer, curious to find out what she is going to experience in ‘the peaceful garden’. It is a lovely reading. In marked contrast to the calm and serenity of this Dehmel setting Bierbaum’s Junghexenlied is exuberant and alive, alive, alive! Dehmel’s Befreit from the same group of songs is much better known and again she finds the ideal ethereal tone, which also goes for Cäcilie.

The Ophelia songs are a different matter, knotty and dissonant and irregularly structured. I had some doubts about Inger Dam-Jensen’s readings, finding her too healthy, too normal. Camilla Tilling is certainly healthy and normal but here she changes appearance, becoming explosive and intense and one can sense, without too much imagination, madness radiating from the poor girl. The nervous restlessness of Guten Morgen is graphically depicted. In this reading the songs stand out as some of the most outstanding things in the composer’s total oeuvre – odd but outstanding.

With an intense reading of my favourite song Allerseelen, an expressive Muttertändelein, a lively and flexible Hat gesagt – bleibt’s nicht dabei and an inward Morgen! the recital is filled with wonderful things. In Morgen! violinist Ulf Wallin participates, playing the solo violin part from the orchestral version of the song – a nice novelty. Paul Rivinius is a sensitive accompanist, the sound is warm and attractive and Anna Lamberti’s liner notes give a lot of valuable background information. There have been several excellent Strauss recitals lately and the back catalogue can boast a lot of fine achievements but this latest addition is without doubt worthy of a place near the top. More, please, BIS!

Göran Forsling



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