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Track(s) taken from CDA67536

Home, sweet home 'Caprice', RO117 Op 51

? 1862; published in New York in 1864; alternative tilte: Charme du foyer; after H Bishop

Philip Martin (piano)
Recording details: December 2004
All Saints' Church, East Finchley, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Martin Compton
Engineered by Julian Millard
Release date: September 2005
Total duration: 6 minutes 48 seconds


'Quite early in the 14-year period that covers these eight volumes the Dublin-born pianist matured into becoming the pre-eminent Gottschalk interpreter. He understands exactly his stylistic range, from the mellifluous Italianate melody of the salon to sheer virtuosity, but without any exaggeration' (Gramophone)

'These are sympathetic performances, glowingly recorded' (BBC Music Magazine)

'another neglected area of the 19th-century repertoire has been thoroughly explored and superbly championed by Martin' (The Guardian)

'Effective performance of this music requires striking a series of delicate balances: between the learned and the popular, between the progressive and the traditional, between the sensual and the self-conscious. And if you've been following this series, you'll know that no current Gottschalkian catches these special ambiguities more consistently than Philip Martin' (International Record Review)

'A beautifully produced disc that is impossible to play without smiling' (The Times)

'This is one of the great piano recordings of recent years. Not since the exquisitely chiseled, delicately nuanced playing of such past greats as Wilhelm Kempff, Stefan Askenase, and Walter Gieseking have I heard anything so hypnotically well performed. This release leaves no doubt that Martin is one of today's finest keyboard artists' (Fanfare, USA)

'Martin plays every piece with such conviction that value judgements on this music's qualities seem almost churlish … the recording itself is of the very highest standards with superb presence, as we expect from Hyperion' (International Piano)
Henry Rowley Bishop (1786–1855), composer, conductor and the first musician to be honoured with a knighthood (1842), wrote this imperishable air in 1821. The title of the song was then ‘To the Home of My Childhood’ with words by Thomas Bayly, and it was composed as ‘a Sicilian air’ in order to complete a collection entitled Melodies of Various Nations. Bishop subsequently used the tune—and used it frequently—in his opera Clari or The Maid of Milan (1823), with its now familiar lyric by the American actor and playwright (latterly a diplomat) John Howard Payne (1791–1852). Gottschalk appears to have first played an arrangement of ‘Home, Sweet Home’ in Boston as early as 1853, though doubtless it differed from this final version published eleven years later. It is dedicated to ‘Madame Mary Eugénie Martin (née Curlett) of Baltimore’, one of whose daughters was, at the time, rumoured to be infatuated with Gottschalk. The right hand of the final variation is marked celeste. Gottschalk was still playing the work six months before his death. The Daily Alta California of 1 June 1865 reported that while playing it to an all-male audience of tough-looking miners, many broke down in sobs because the piece caused their minds ‘to wander back to the spot of their birth’.

from notes by Jeremy Nicholas © 2005

Compositeur, chef d’orchestre et premier musicien à avoir été créé chevalier (1842), Henry Rowley Bishop (1786–1855) écrivit cet air de chanson impérissable en 1821, sur des paroles de Thomas Bayly. D’abord baptisée «To the Home of my Childhood», cette chanson fut composée sous forme d’«air sicilien» pour compléter un recueil intitulé Melodies of Various Nations. Puis Bishop utilisa cet air—et l’utilisa souvent—dans son opéra Clari or The Maid of Milan (1823), où il l’associa au texte désormais fameux de l’acteur/dramaturge (et futur diplomate) américain John Howard Payne (1791–1852). Selon toute vraisemblance, Gottschalk joua «Home, Sweet Home» à Boston dès 1853, mais dans un arrangement sans doute différent de la présente version définitive publiée onze ans plus tard et dédiée à «Madame Mary Eugénie Martin (née Curlett) of Baltimore», dont l’une des filles s’était, selon la rumeur de l’époque, entichée de lui. La main droite de la dernière variation est marquée celeste. Gottschalk jouait encore cette œuvre six mois avant sa mort. Le Daily Alta California rapporta cette anecdote: alors qu’il l’interprétait devant un public de mineurs aux allures de durs à cuire, nombre de ces derniers fondirent en sanglots tant ce morceau renvoyait leur esprit «à leur coin de naissance».

extrait des notes rédigées par Jeremy Nicholas © 2005
Français: Hypérion

Dieses unverwüstliche Lied schrieb 1821 Henry Rowley Bishop (1786–1855), Komponist, Dirigent und der erste Musiker, der in den Adelsstand erhoben wurde (1842). Das Lied auf Worte von Thomas Bayly hieß damals „To the Home of My Childhood“ [Über das Heim meiner Kindheit]. Komponiert war das Lied wie ein „sizilianisches Air“ und schloss eine Sammlung mit Namen Melodies of Various Nations [Melodien verschiedener Völker] ab. Bishop zog später die Melodie wieder heran, und das ausgiebig, in seiner Oper Clari or The Maid of Milan [Clari oder die Jungfrau von Milan] (1823). In der Oper erklang die Melodie auf dem nunmehr bekannten Text des amerikanischen Schauspielers und Schriftstellers (und am Ende Diplomat) John Howard Payne (1791–1852). Gottschalk scheint schon 1853 in Boston zum ersten Mal eine Bearbeitung von „Home, Sweet Home“ gespielt zu haben. Zweifellos unterschied sich diese Bearbeitung von der elf Jahre später veröffentlichten, hier eingespielten letzten Fassung. Sie ist „Madame Mary Eugénie Martin (geborene Curlett) of Baltimore“ gewidmet. Eine ihrer Töchter war damals angeblich in Gottschalk verliebt. Die rechte Hand in der letzten Variation enthält den Hinweis celeste. Gottschalk spielte dieses Werk noch sechs Monate vor seinem Tod. Die Zeitung Daily Alta California berichtete am 1. Juni 1865, dass viele im Publikum, das ausschließlich aus hart gesotten aussehenden Grubenarbeitern bestand, in Tränen ausbrachen, weil sie das Stück an den „Platz ihrer Geburt“ erinnerte.

aus dem Begleittext von Jeremy Nicholas © 2005
Deutsch: Elke Hockings

Other albums featuring this work

Gottschalk: The Complete Solo Piano Music
CDS44451/88CDs Boxed set (at a special price)
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