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Hyperion Records

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Faust and Magaretha. after Ary Scheffer (1795-1858)
Sotheby’s Picture Library
Track(s) taken from CDA67055
Recording details: September 1998
Tonstudio Teije van Geest, Sandhausen, Germany
Produced by Teije van Geest
Engineered by Teije van Geest
Release date: February 1999
Total duration: 18 minutes 51 seconds

'Stephan Genz has one of the most beautiful voices around today, used with such authority and imagination that I have found myself playing his Beethoven recital over and over again. I have never heard these songs sung more beautifully. An instant classic' (Gramophone)

'This disc, immaculately recorded, should win many new friends for Beethoven's songs' (The Daily Telegraph)

'Perfectly sung' (The Independent)

'A voice of warm, velvety beauty. A disc to have one reassessing Beethoven as song-writer' (The Guardian)

'As good as any anthology of Beethoven songs on CD' (Classic CD)

'Strongly recommended' (Hi-Fi News)

Sechs Lieder von Gellert, Op 48
author of text

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
The set of six poems that Beethoven chose for this attractive collection were all taken from Gellert’s celebrated volume entitled Geistliche Oden und Lieder, originally published in 1757. So remarkable was its impact at the time that it was set in its entirety by Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach the following year.

Bearing in mind such towering late masterpieces as the Missa Solemnis and the ‘Choral’ Symphony, one can easily imagine how congenial the overriding message of the unity of mankind and the notion of a beneficent God were to Beethoven. Yet despite his passionately held beliefs and sympathies, these songs are remarkably contained, both emotionally and pianistically.

For this recording, Stephan Genz and Roger Vignoles have reinstated a number of the original verses omitted by Beethoven in the first printed edition, thereby creating a greater sense of balance between the nominally terse first five songs and Busslied. These are appended (number of extra verses in brackets) to Bitten, Die Liebe des Nächsten, Vom Tode, Die Ehre Gottes aus der Natur, and Gottes Macht und Vorsehung.

from notes by Julian Haylock © 1999

Other albums featuring this work
'Beethoven: Songs' (GAW21055)
Beethoven: Songs
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