Category Archives: Robert Schumann


Robert Reinick: “Message of Love”

Set by Robert Schumann (1810-1856), “Liebesbotschaft”, op. 36 no. 6, from “Sechs Gedichte aus dem Liederbuch eines Malers, No. 6.” Translation © Emily Ezust, Lied & Art Song Texts Page.

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Adrian  Ludwig Richter – Mädchen auf der Wiese – 1823

Liebesbotschaft


Clouds that hurry toward the East,

where the one who’s mine is waiting,

all my wishes, my hopes and songs

shall fly with you on your wings,

shall steer you, hurrying ones, to her

so that my chaste love

shall think of me with loyal love.

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Sing morning dreams to her still,

float gently in the garden,

sink like dew into the shadowy room,

strew pearls upon the flowers and trees

so that to that wonderful being, if she passes by,

all the merry blossoms

shall open with even brighter splendor.

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And in the evening, in the silent calm,

spread the sinking sun’s light upon her!

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It shall paint you purple and gold;

And in the sea, bright with glow and sunbeams,

the little ship plies its way,

so that she believes singing angels

are preserving her.

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Yes, it may well be angels,

if my heart were pure like hers;

All my wishes, my hopes and songs

are drawn there on your wings,

are steered there by you, hurrying ones,

to my chaste love,

so that I alone may think of her.

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Robert Schumann: “Dichterliebe (Op. 48)” – Heinrich Heine’s “The Poet’s Love”

To honor Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau’s 84th birthday on May 28, Karen L, FiDiTanzer528, uploaded in Four Parts Robert Schumann’s hauntingly beautiful Song Cycle, “Dichterliebe (Op. 48).

Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4

This performance comes from Fischer-Dieskau’s debut solo recital at the Salzburg Festival on August 13, 1956. His partner at the piano is Gerald Moore.

Schumann_at_work

“Dichterliebe”, ‘The Poet’s Love’ (composed 1840), is the best-known song cycle of Robert Schumann (Op. 48). The texts for the 16 songs come from the “Lyrisches Intermezzo” of Heinrich Heine, composed 1822-1823, published as part of the poet’s “Das Buch der Lieder”.

The very natural, almost hyper-sensitive poetical affections of the poems are beautifully mirrored in Schumann’s settings, with their miniaturist chromaticism and suspensions. The poet’s love is a hothouse of nuanced responses to the delicate language of flowers, dreams and fairy-tales. Schumann adapts the words of the poems to his needs for the songs, sometimes repeating phrases and often rewording a line to supply the desired cadence.

Notes from Wikipedia. Below, excerpt of the Heine poems, translation by Paul Hindemith.

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From old fairy tales beckons
To me a white hand,
Where there is a singing and sounding
Of a magical land,
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Where multicolored flowers bloom
In golden twilight,
And glow lovely and fragrant
With their bridal visage,
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And where green trees sing
Primeval melodies;
Where breezes sound secretly,
And birds warble,
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And mist-figures rise
From the earth
And dance airy round-dances
In an odd chorus,
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And blue sparks burn
On every leaf and twig,
And red lights run
In a mad, chaotic circle,
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And loud springs break
Out of wild marble stone,
And in the streams–oddly–
Shine forth the reflections.
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Ah! If I could enter there
And indulge my heart
And give up my agony
And be free and holy!
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Ah! This is the land of bliss
That I see so often in a dream,
But when the morning sun comes,
It melts like mere froth.

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Eichendorff: “Your Blissful, Wonderful Image”

“Dein Bildnis wunderselig” by Josef Karl Benedikt von Eichendorff (1788-1857), “Intermezzo” from Sängerleben. Set by Robert Schumann (1810-1856), “Intermezzo”, op. 39 no. 2, from Liederkries, no. 2. Translation © Emily Ezust, Lied & Art Song Texts Page.

knightandlady

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Your blissful, wonderful image
I have in my heart's depths;
it looks so freshly and joyously
at me in every moment.
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My heart sings mutely to itself
an old, beautiful song
that soars into the air
and hastens to your side.
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Eichendorff: Above the Garden and Across the Sky

by Josef Karl Benedikt von Eichendorff (1788-1857),

Set by Fanny Mendelssohn-Hensel (1805-1847) , “Frühling”, op. 7 no. 3., by Robert Alexander Schumann (1810-1856) , “Frühlingsnacht”, op. 39 no. 12 (1840), from Liederkreis, no. 12. Translation©Emily Ezust, Lied & Art Song Texts Page

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“Frühlingsnacht”

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Above the garden and across the sky
I heard migrating birds passing;
that meant that spring was in the air;
below, things are already beginning to bloom.

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I could rejoice, I could weep –
I feel as though it cannot be!
Old wonders appear again
with the moonlight.

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And the moon and stars say it,
and in a dream the grove murmurs it,
and the nightingales sing it:
She is yours! She is yours!

 moon songmoon-songmoon-songmoon-songmoon-song

moon-song

Eichendorff: Forest Girl

“Waldmädchen”

by Josef Karl Benedikt von Eichendorff (1788-1857)
Set by Robert Schumann (1810-1556) in 1849.
Set by Hugo Wolf (1860-1903) in 1886-8
Translation©Emily Ezust, Lied & Art Song Texts Page

ForestGirl

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I am a bright fire blazing

from the green rocky wreath;

the sea wind is my lover and

summons me to a lusty whirlwind dance.

 

Constantly moving and changing,

rising wildly, bending gently,

I turn my slim blaze:

do not come near me – I’ll burn you!

 

Where the wild brooks roar

and the lofty palms stand,

when the hunter listens secretly,

many deer wander alone.

 

I am a deer, fleeing through the rubble,

across the heights, where in the snow

the last summits glimmer mutely;

do not follow me, do not ever try to hunt me!

 

I am a little bird in the sky,

soaring across the blue lake;

through the clouds of the ravine

no arrow flies behind me.

 

And the floodplains, the rocky arch,

as wide as the lonely forest,

so wide! I have sunk into the waves,

ah, I have evaporated!

 

eichendorf

Joseph Freiherr von Eichendorff