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Hyperion Records

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Woman at a window (1822) by Caspar David Friedrich (1774-1840)
Track(s) taken from CDH55360
Recording details: March 1999
All Saints' Church, East Finchley, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Oliver Rivers
Engineered by Tony Faulkner
Release date: January 2000
Total duration: 3 minutes 5 seconds

'Pleasant, delightful … an excellent record: enterprising programmes, fresh young artists, fine presentation, typical Hyperion' (Gramophone)

'[Fanny Mendelssohn's] reputation deserves the kind of boost this excellent disc offers. Both Eugene Asti and Susan Gritton get to the heart of these pieces' (BBC Music Magazine)

'Beautiful, direct, simple and memorable new song[s] … Asti provides the beautifully limpid, balanced accompaniment you imagine Fanny herself might have played' (International Record Review)

First line:
Ihr fernen Heimathöhen
18 October 1844
author of text

Traum freely combines two of Eichendorff’s poems which appear under the heading Erinnerung (‘Remembrance’). The opening vocal phrase so distinctly recalls Beethoven’s An die ferne Geliebte (‘To the distant beloved’) that it is hard not to imagine that this is a conscious quote. Similarly, the opening phrase of the second section contains harmonic echoes of Felix’s 1837 setting of Suleika, another poem about separation. The classical purity of the entire song, unusual for this period in her writing, may also be a deliberate nostalgic return to an earlier style. Perhaps all these references served to sublimate Fanny’s feelings of separation from Felix and his family.

from notes by Eugene Asti and Susan Gritton © 2000

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