Hyperion Records

Der Wasserfall
First line:
Rieselt hernieder, schäumende Fluten!
composer
1824/5; from the manuscript presented to Agnes Rauch
author of text

Recordings
'Mendelssohn: Songs and Duets, Vol. 4' (CDA67739)
Mendelssohn: Songs and Duets, Vol. 4
Details

Der Wasserfall
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Der Wasserfall is a setting of a poem by Mendelssohn’s good friend Karl Klingemann (1798– 1862), who provided poetry for such Mendelssohn gems as Frühlingslied Op 34 No 3, Bei der Wiege Op 47 No 6, Frühlingslied Op 71 No 2, and Herbstlied Op 84 No 2, among others. This song of the waterfall is one of the most harmonically complex and experimental works from the newly revealed songs; its muffled dissonances are marvellously analogous to the roar of falling waters. One of the two manuscript sources includes a ten-bar piano introduction in which broken-chordal waters stream downward from the treble to the bass register; the lovely prelude is included in this performance. Thereafter, the ever-changing face of the pianistic waters—complete with tremolos, rocking octaves, and chordal patterns—foreshadows what Liszt, Debussy, and Ravel would do with water music much later.

from notes by Susan Youens © 2009

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