Sonett fur Wien: Songs of Erich Korngold

£12.00

Erich Korngold is perhaps best known as the pioneering émigré composer whose grand orchestral scores defined the sound of film during the golden age of Hollywood. As well as this though, his output for voice in the form of Lieder and Song highlighted the strong bond that Korngold forever held with his homeland and the city of Vienna, a place inextricably linked to the High-Romantic style that Korngold so ably perfected.

This collection of songs and lieder are beautifully performed by Sarah Connolly (mezzo-soprano) and William Dazeley (baritone), accompanied by renowned pianist and broadcaster Iain Burnside.

In a feature for BBC Music Magazine in June 2013, Sarah Connolly picked this disc as her favourite recording, saying:

"We recorded this in the lovely Potton Hall in East Anglia. I was in very fresh voice, and the producer John West was very encouraging and left me to my own devices. But when listened to the playback I couldnt believe how closely miked I sounded – you could hear the formation of consonantseverythingJohn said Dont worry, weve got it in hand, well make it sound right.’ When listened to the final recording I couldnt believe how clean it sounded. I now use it as an example of how I’d like my voice to sound."

SKU: SIGCD160

What people are saying

“Both singers respond magnificently to Korngold’s testing vocal lines” BBC Music Magazine “Not everyone warms to the music of Erich Wolfgang Korngold, but this excellent selection of songs from his Viennese days, with a couple of examples also dating from his Hollywood heyday, might convert even the sternest naysayer.” The Gramophone, Best Discs of 2009

"some virtuosic dynamic control from Connolly in the sparse earthy setting of Desdemona’s song is a highlight of a disc" Opera Now, July 2009

"Both singers respond magnificently to Korngold’s testing vocal lines, with their wide leaps and need for solid legato. Connolly’s rich mezzo comes into its own here" BBC Music Magazine, July 2009

Sarah Connolly
William Dazeley
Iain Burnside

Release date:30th Mar 2009
Order code:SIGCD160
Barcode: 635212016022

  1. Sonnett f?r Wien, Op. 41 – –
  2. Vier Abschiedslieder, Op. 14 – Sterbelied – –
  3. – Dies eine kann mein Sehnen nimmer fassen – –
  4. – Mond, so gehst du wieder auf – –
  5. – Gefasster Abschied – –
  6. Drei Lieder, Op. 18 – In meine innige Nacht – –
  7. – Tu ab den Schmerz – –
  8. – Versuchung – –
  9. Drei Lieder, Op. 22 – Was du mir bist? – –
  10. – Mit dir zu schweigen – –
  11. – Welt ist stille eingeschlafen – –
  12. Four Shakespeare Songs, Op. 31 – Desdemona?s song – –
  13. – Under the Greenwood tree – –
  14. – Blow, blow, thou winter wind – –
  15. – When birds do sing – –
  16. Unverg?nglichkeit, Op. 27 – Unverg?nglichkeit – –
  17. – Das eilende B?chlein – –
  18. – – –
  19. – St?rker als der Tod – –
  20. – Unverg?nglichkeit – –
  21. Songs of the Clown, Op. 29 – Come away death – –
  22. – O Mistress Mine – –
  23. – Adieu, Good Man Devil – –
  24. – Hey Robin – –
  25. – For the rain, it raineth every day – –
  26. F?nf Lieder, Op. 38 – Gl?ckwunsch – –
  27. – Der Kranke – –
  28. – Alt-Spanisch – –
  29. – Old English Song – –
  30. – My Mistress? Eyes – –

Opera Now Magazine, July 2009
**

Korngold’s Sonnett für Wien is, as Jessica Duchen’s outstanding sleeve notes tell us, a ‘eulogy to the lost world of pre-First World War Vienna’. William Dazeley steps up manfully to this defiant tribute, written after decades in Hollywood. For a searing, bittersweet taste of old Vienna, you have to wait for the second track, a setting of Christina Rossetti’s ‘Sterbelied’, poignantly handled by Sarah Connolly and Iain Burnside. This 30-song rollercoaster includes the expressionistic Op 18 songs, the exquisite Unvergänglichkeit set, and some Shakespeare settings from the Hollywood years. No one ever writes great Shakespeare songs, but ‘For the rain, it raineth every day’ is terrific fun ,and some virtuosic dynamic control from Connolly in the sparse earthy setting of Desdemona’s song is a highlight of a disc where the English settings suffer by comparison with the German ones. But for the excellent efforts of the performers, the disparity would be greater. Signum’s other recent song release, a showcase for English countertenor Tim Travers-Brown is a valuable resource for enthusiasts of the genre. The world premier recordings of Michael Howard’s The Painted Rose, and Three English Songs, are set along side Betty Roe’s Noble Numbers and some well-judged appropriations from Warlock and Howells.

TL

BBC Music Magazine

This Korngold recital encompasses much the same territory as Dietrich Henschel’s Harmonia Mundi collection from 2002, bar that disc’s resuscitation of some of the composer’s juvenilia. Most of Korngold’s songs, though, date from his adulthood, and this new disc features seven of the published sets, from the Abshiedslieder of 1920 to the Hollywood-imbued Five Songs Op. 38 from the 1940s, as well as the single, nostalgic ‘Sonnett fur Wien’ of 1952, his last song.

Sarah Connolly and William Dazeley share the vocal honours, each taking possession of single sets of songs but also splitting works such as the Abschiedslieder between them. Both singers respond magnificently to Korngold’s testing vocal lines, with their wide leaps and need for solid legato. Connolly’s rich mezzo comes into its own here, the opening lines of ‘Mond, so gehst du wieder auf’ a case in point. Dazeley uses his tonal range to good effect, too, though he’s particularly successful in the quick-wittedness of the Songs of the Clown from Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night. Iain Burnside accompanies with his customary insight.

Sonically, the singers’ voices project well, but Burnside’s piano sounds a bit muffled and the acoustic as a whole comes across as a little dry and impersonalized.

Matthew Rye

The Gramophone, Best Discs of 2009

Not everyone warms to the music of Erich Wolfgang Korngold, but this excellent selection of songs from his Viennese days, with a couple of examples also dating from his Hollywood heyday, might convert even the sternest naysayer. Iain Burnside accompanies Sarah Connolly and William Dazeley in the many moods of this complicated Wunderkind.