Classical Editor: Rob Barnett                               Music Webmaster Len Mullenger:

30 Lieder.
Frauke May (mezzosoprano) Bernhard Renzikowski (piano)
Arte Nova Classics 74321 75076-2 [61.25] (PGW)

Sommernacht. Der gute Rat. Aus den Himmelsaugen. Verlassen hab' ich mein Lieb. Um Mittermacht bluhen die Blumen. Die Glocke des Glucks. Gebet. Winterahnung. Die Nixe. Gluck Abschied. Stelldichein. Sehnsucht. Morgen. Kindergeschichte. Der Himmel hat ein Trane geweint. Flieder. Gute Nacht. Ach Liebster in Gedanken. Am Dorfsee. Mein Traum. Lied eines Madchens. Schmied Schmerz. Mutter tote Mutter. Friede. Zwei Maschen. Gluckes genug. Darum Wiegenlied. In der Fruhe.

This prolific composer contributed to most genres, but is best known to us for rather heavy music for organ and orchestra. Here is a selection of his songs from all periods, and they deserve to be considered for lieder recital programmes.

It is a diligent and worthy production, with limitations. The singer has a basically attractive voice, though it can become a little shrill at times. There is a fair variety of mood from the solemn and serious to the lighter and skittish. The accompaniment is satisfactory.

There is no reason for German speakers not to acquire this CD, but others should hesitate, even though opportunities to hear these songs in UK are infrequent.

The presentation is fatally flawed by having the words in German only; a very parochial approach these days. Does the German company Arte Nova want to keep this composer to themselves?

Three of the songs, Op 35/2, 37/3 and 66/10, have been translated by Emily Ezust

Peter Grahame Woolf

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