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Der Goldschmiedsgesell, D560

First line:
Es ist doch meine Nachbarin
May 1817; first published by Diabelli in 1850 as part of volume 48 of the Nachlass
author of text

In March 1817 Schubert was fascinated by Goethe texts which encompassed large philosophical issues – the first setting of Mahomets Gesang and Ganymed both date from this time. In May 1817 we find another Schubert, and another Goethe. Three settings of the poet's words were composed, and three delightful and unpretentious small songs were the result. Liebhaber in allen Gestalten, Schweizerlied and Der Goldschmiedsgesell form a happy musical trio of folksong-like simplicity although their poems were written at very different times in Goethe's life. Liebhaber in allen Gestalten is the best known and has often been used as an encore – 'so nimm mich wie ich bin!'; Schweizerlied is daunting for many a singer because of the Swiss dialect, but it is a song of great charm. Both of these belong more or less exclusively to the female repertory. Der Goldschmiedsgesell has been almost completely overlooked; it certainly ranks as one of the least known of the Goethe settings. A baritone given to singing Prometheus and An Schwager Kronos would do well to include it in a Goethe group for lightness and contrast. The music is in Schubert's best Papageno manner. A saucy vocal line is sparsely punctuated by chords in the piano; each of these represents one of the boy's physical movements as he hammers and files precious metal at his workbench, singing the while. The goldsmith's apprentice is one of a number of cheerful working-class characters (cf Fischerlied, Tischlerlied, Pflügerlied) who have been immortalised by a composer who, like Shakespeare, had a soft spot for earthy, uncomplicated people.

from notes by Graham Johnson © 1995


Schubert: The Complete Songs
CDS44201/40Boxed set + book (at a special price) — Download only
Schubert: The Hyperion Schubert Edition, Vol. 24
CDJ33024Archive Service; also available on CDS44201/40


Track 25 on CDJ33024 [2'02] Archive Service; also available on CDS44201/40
Track 3 on CDS44201/40 CD19 [2'02] Boxed set + book (at a special price) — Download only

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