Felix Mendelssohn is one of the most performed composers of the 19th century, and certainly one of the most loved, but he was the last of the romantic crop whose works were not completely listed. In the Mendelssohn anniversary year of 2009 this loophole has, thankfully, been plugged, mainly through the efforts of the publishing of the works of the composer by the Saxon Academy of Sciences in Leipzig. This Leipzig Edition is now considered to be the foremost authority on the Mendelssohn "oeuvre", something that two years previously could not be said. The result of this research work is that the musical public are now aware of, among other pieces, 61 of a total of 115 songs composed for voice and piano. These so-called "Vergessene Lieder" included in this CD cover the composer's entire creative period, and all 23 pieces reflect the many facets, colours, and richness of ideas that are the hallmarks of all of Mendelssohn's output.
Both singer and soloist unashamedly admit their admiration for this mostly forgotten repertoire, and performances are consistently fresh, lively and enthusiastic. Their fastidious attention to detail is also praiseworthy. This is an extremely pleasant and important addition to the Mendelssohn catalogue which should not be missed. Sound and documentation are first-rate.
Copyright © 2011, Gerald Fenech.