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Gesang aus der Ferne, WoO137

author of text

Gesang aus der Ferne, WoO 137, is a setting of a text from the third edition of Christian Reissig’s Blümchen der Einsamkeit; it became 'Anxiety of Absence, a favorite Arietta … by Lewis van Beethoven' when it was published in London in 1810, the same year as its initial appearances in Leipzig and Vienna. For this long song, Beethoven begins with an extended piano introduction, quite like the start of a sonatina, followed by the same strains varied and extended as the persona remembers how joyous, how dance-like, how full of nightingale song his life was when his sweetheart was with him. But now—and here the music changes key, meter, tempo, and mood— they are apart, and longing drives him into the heights to long for her. The vows that he has never loved anyone as he loves her lead to an ecstatic cadence on the crucial verb 'loved'; the final section is a quicker, livelier variation of the initial passage as the lover begs his distant sweetheart to transform his cottage into a temple of contentment, with her as its goddess.

from notes by Susan Youens © 2009


Beethoven: Lieder und Gesänge
Studio Master: SIGCD145Download onlyStudio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available


Track 13 on SIGCD145 [4'36] Download only

Track-specific metadata for SIGCD145 track 13

Recording date
3 May 2008
Recording venue
St Paul's Church, Deptford, London, United Kingdom
Recording producer
John H West
Recording engineer
Andrew Mellor
Hyperion usage
  1. Beethoven: Lieder und Gesänge (SIGCD145)
    Disc 1 Track 13
    Release date: January 2009
    Download only
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