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#1958354 - 09/13/12 02:33 PM Alban Berg - Seven Early Songs
Carey Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/13/05
Posts: 7230
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona
These seven early songs by Alban Berg were performed in a vocal recital I accompanied while serving in the Army in Germany in 1971.

At the time, I wasn't quite comfortable with these works. I'd never heard a performance of them (either live or recorded). And, of course, we didn't have the internet back then, so I had to work solely from the score (rather novel idea, don't you think?). grin Fortunately, the tenor knew what he was doing. My personal favorites are "Die Nachtigall" and "Im Zimmer."

The seven songs are:

1. Nacht (Night)
2. Schilflied (Song amid the reeds)
3. Die Nachtigall (The nightingale)
4. Traumgekrönt (Crowned in dream)
5. Im Zimmer (Indoors)
6. Liebesode (Ode to Love)
7. Sommertage (Summer days)


From Wikipedia:
"The Seven Early Songs (Sieben frühe Lieder) (c. 1905 to 1908), are early compositions of Alban Berg, written while he was under the tutelage of Arnold Schoenberg. They are an interesting synthesis combining Berg's heritage of pre-Schoenberg song writing with the rigour and undeniable influence of Schoenberg. The writing very much carries with it the heritage of Richard Strauss (although the influences of a number of other composers can be discerned - Gustav Mahler and Hugo Wolf for example, as well as Claude Debussy's harmonic palette in evidence in "Nacht"), through the expansiveness of gesture and 'opening of new vistas,' and that of Richard Wagner. The songs were first written for medium voice and piano;they were revised for high voice and orchestra in 1928."
Mason and Hamlin BB - 91640
Kawai CA-65
YouTube channel - http://www.youtube.com/user/pianophilo

#1959085 - 09/14/12 11:56 PM Re: Alban Berg - Seven Early Songs [Re: Carey]
currawong Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/15/07
Posts: 6100
Loc: Down Under
Oooooo - can't wait to listen to these when I have the happy combination of [1]time, and [2]internet connection not dropping out every few minutes. I don't think I've ever heard them sung by a tenor. And, great minds, my favourites (though I love them all) are also Die Nachtigall and Im Zimmer. smile
Du holde Kunst...

#1959435 - 09/16/12 12:39 AM Re: Alban Berg - Seven Early Songs [Re: Carey]
Brendan Offline

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 5506
Loc: McAllen, TX
Lovely Traumgekrönt! That's definitely my favorite from the set. The last few measures are sublime...

#1959451 - 09/16/12 02:11 AM Re: Alban Berg - Seven Early Songs [Re: Carey]
Carey Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/13/05
Posts: 7230
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona
Currawong and Brendan -

Thanks for listening !!

I must admit that the performance here is a tad better than I felt it was at the time. grin So glad that I kept the original reel-to-reel recording. Now that I've reacquainted myself with the work I can't get these hauntingly beautiful songs out of my mind. I've also rediscovered Berg's 1928 arrangement for high voice and orchestra, which is even more effective than the voice/piano settings.
Mason and Hamlin BB - 91640
Kawai CA-65
YouTube channel - http://www.youtube.com/user/pianophilo


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