The second version of Liszt’s beloved Die Zelle in Nonnenwerth
(‘The Nonnenwerth Cloister’) is effectively two versions in one, because its more florid alternative text proceeds alongside the main text for much of the work, printed together on four staves. (The final version is in volume 25, the third in volume 26, and the first in volume 51.) The two texts are both offered here because of their great divergence in letter and spirit, even though the general air of melancholy in the rueful recollection of happier times – implied in the original song and in the occasion of its conception – permeates both.
from notes by Leslie Howard © 1995