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CD Review

Richard Strauss

The Complete Songs Volume 2

  • Die Nacht, Op. 10 #3
  • Geduld, Op. 10 #5
  • Mein Herz Ist Stumm, Op. 19 #6
  • All' Mein Gedanken, Op. 21 #1
  • Du Meines Herzens Kronelein, Op. 21 #2
  • Ach Lieb, Ich Mub Nun Scheiden, Op. 21 #3
  • Warst Du Mein, Op. 26 #2
  • Ruhe, Meine Seele!, Op. 27 #1
  • Traum Durch Die Dammerung, Op. 29 #1
  • Schlagende Herzen, Op. 29 #2
  • Nachtgang, Op. 29 #3
  • Blauer Sommer, Op. 31 #1
  • Weiber Jasmin, Op. 31 #3
  • Das Rosenband, Op. 36 #1
  • Waldseligkeit, Op. 49 #1
  • In Goldener Fulle, Op. 49 #2
  • Wiegenliedchen, Op. 49 #3
  • Wer Lieben Will, Mubb Leiden, Op. 49 #7
  • Ach, Was Kummer, Qual Und Schmerzen, Op. 49 #8
  • Blindenklage, Op. 56 #2
  • Drei Lieder der Ophelia Op. 67
  • Wie Erkenn' Ich Mein Treulieb?
  • Guten Morgen,'s Ist Sankt Valentinstag
  • Sie Trugen Ihn Auf Der Bahre Blob
Anne Schwanewilms, soprano
Roger Vignoles, piano
Hyperion CDA67588 66m DDD
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Although this second issue of Hyperion's complete Strauss song cycle has taken some time in coming, it is surely most welcome, not only from a musical viewpoint but more as a reassuring factor that the cycle will in fact be completed when the time is ripe.

This collection is a wonderful mixture of very rare pieces and well known works but the whole recipe is so full of delights that one is truly hard pressed to select a favourite. In my view, "O warst du mein" (track 7) is among the most impassioned and dramatic of the lot while "Weiser Jasmin" and "Wiegenliedchen" (tracks 13 and 17 respectively) reveal the composer's lighter side.

The disc also contains two Alsatian folksongs and the riveting "Blindenklage" for good measure. The expert Strauss soprano Anne Schwanewilms demonstrates not only her uncanny understanding of these charming yet sublime gems, but also her dramatic and vocal gifts. The reproduction of George Clairun's "Ophelia in the Thistles" on the front cover of the disc's booklet is particularly evocative.

Copyright © 2007, Gerald Fenech