Mahler: Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen (arr. Schoenberg)

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Trevor Pinnock conductor
Katie Bray mezzo-soprano
Gareth Brynmor John baritone
Academy Soloists Ensemble

The works in this recording transport us to a period of vast musical change: in Mahler we hear nostalgia welded with modernism; with Wagner, we hear the sunset of Romanticism; with Zemlinsky we hear the seeds of fin-de-siècle Vienna; and in all, the extremities of emotion distilled into non-symphonic forces. Arnold Schoenberg’s own arrangement of Mahler’s intensely personal song cycle is followed by Erwin Stein’s arrangement of Busoni’s landmark composition Berceuse élégiaque.

Specially commissioned for this chamber series is Christopher Austin’s arrangement of Zemlinsky’s evocative Sechs Gesänge, which enjoys its premiere recording here. Closing the disc is Wagner’s famous Siegfried Idyll.

The arrangements for chamber forces serve to illuminate the original scores; the clarity achieved in these performances expose revealing new insights.

‘All four works together make for a well-balanced programme and the playing of the Royal Academy of Music chamber soloists is pleasingly flexible throughout’
Gramophone, July 2015

‘Trevor Pinnock and his 18-piece ensemble impress with highest precision and remarkable playful expressiveness’
Artistxite, June 2015  

‘These fine young musicians show no frailties’
BBC Radio 3 CD Review, August 2015

‘...warm, fine-grained and lyrical baritone of Gareth Brynmor John tunes in to Schoenberg’s pungent and resinous arrangement, sweet with avian flute and violin, bittersweet in the dark, mesmeric breathing of the harmonium. Christopher Austin prefers to use the accordion for his own wonderfully imaginative and idiomatic arrangement of the six Maeterlinck settings... Katie Bray’s mezzo here catches Zemlinsky’s dark and impassioned response to the Romantic archaism of Maeterlinck’s verse... beautifully poised in Trevor Pinnock’s direction of the excellent Royal Academy of Music Soloists Ensemble, and nicety captured in this warm, close, yet clear recording’
Performance ★★★★ Recording ★★★★
BBC Music Magazine, September 2015

Total Time: 61 minutes

This is the third in our series which retrospectively reignites Schoenberg’s vision of performing chamber reductions of symphonic repertoire.

Gustav Mahler Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen (arr. Arnold Schoenberg)
Ferruccio Busoni Berceuse élégiaque, op.42 (arr. Erwin Stein)
Alexander von Zemlinsky Sechs Gesänge, op.13 (arr. Christopher Austin)
Richard Wagner Siegfried Idyll

Quote Guardian - lucid performances

Quote Guardian - lucid performances