Monday, May 02, 2005

Schumann Dichterliebe

Tenor-Ian Bostridge

Im Wonderschoenen Monat Mai: This is the first piece of the cycle. It is quite short, composed of two strophes, identical. It's simplicity mirrors the innocence and naivete of the poet as he sings of his heart's confession. The piano has a haunting repeated gesture that moves through all of the accompaniment, especially prominent in the prelude an interlude. A major.

Aus meinen Thraenen spriessen: is perhaps even shorter. It begins again the mi, and retains much of the melodic hints of the previous song. Here though it is through composed in three phrase groups (the first two shorter and parallel, the third twice their length), all ending on a half cadence. Still in A. There is also no introduction.

Die Rose, die Lilie, die Taube...: We've changed keys to D Major. It's quick, light, joyous--only one break for the singer to breathe. The singer actually begins before the piano, though the piano has a nice postlude.

Wenn ich in dein Augen seh': though in GM, the first melodic gesture of the singer is reminiscent of the first two pieces in the cycle, beginning on the b, repeated , then up, down. He does some interesting harmonic wandering, as the poety wanders through the pain of holding such desire in his heart.

Dein Angesicht: We go from GM to EbM! chromatic mediant? Again repeated b and then up, but this time a b flat. It begins three phrases on the bflat, the first being the shortest, the two longer, all take advantage of the repeated b flat.

skip one (Bb Major)

Ich will meine Seele tauchen: this is my favorite of the cycle. The piano just takes off into a different world here. We again have that odd three assymetrical phrases going on, though all here are ending on a PAC, and we're in a lovely b minor--how does he get away with this? Maybe it adds to the shock factor. I'm gonna listen to this again, then again, then again, because this is my favorite, and I'm stopping here for tonight.

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