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Wolf: Morike-Lieder Import

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Audio CD, Import, March 12, 2013
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Editorial Reviews

Among Hugo Wolf's three hundred-odd songs, the fifty-three settings he made of poems by Eduard Morike are numerically the largest group. He had owned a copy of the poems since the age of eighteen and they came to mean so much to him that he confessed that he could not be parted from them even for an hour. Werner Gura and Jan Schultsz recorded a selection of songs, reissued here, that reflect the essential characteristics of the whole cycle. Werner Gura's many recordings for harmonia mundi include Dichterliebe and Die schöne Müllerin, both of which were Editor's Choice selections in Gramophone, and he also appears on Rene Jacobs' Gramophone Award winning recording of Haydn's The Seasons.

Product Details

  • Performer: Werner Gura, Jan Schultsz
  • Conductor: None
  • Composer: Hugo Wolf
  • Audio CD (March 12, 2013)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Harmonia Mundi
  • ASIN: B00A2CL5QY
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #537,429 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Note: I attached this review to the latest bargain reissue of the original 2005 release. It now comes in a flimsy cardboard sleeve without texts, so buyer beware. amazon has also placed the review with the more expensive original Cd, presumably with texts - the cover shows Guera wearing a muffler.

It's always fascinating to see how a singer overcomes natural drawbacks in the voice. Werner Guera has such a light tenor that he wouldn't seem well suited to Hugo Wolf's expressive intensity. In fact, I'd have to go back decades, to Hughes Cuenod, to remember a voice like this seriously attempting to sing Lieder. But Guera has all the expressive technique needed to sing Schubert's equally demanding Schwanengesang, which has almost exclusively been the province of lower voices, so I came to this CD of Morike-Lieder with high hopes.

And a combination of art and compatibility wins out. Guera is naturally suited to the lighter songs like Die Gartner, which is carefree and buoyant; he can encompass the long crescendo that brings Er Ist's to a joyous conclusion; even the storminess of Begegnung comes of well once the pianist, Jan Schultsz, takes care to scale it down. It was also canny to bring the Morike collection in the first place, since its 53 songs afford a range of expression that isn't like the suffering and angst of, say, the Spanish songbook. Guera also knows that he can't play it safe, so in a powerful song like Der Tambour (so close in mood to one of Mahler's soldier songs in Des Knaben Wunderhorn), the singer unleashes the full force of his voice. He triumphs in the spooky Der Feuerreiter, rising to a terrifying wail where stronger voices employ sheer power.
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