Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Mahler, Schmidt, Fassbaender|
Mahler: Das Klagende Lied, Lieder
A Great Klagende Lied
L. Johan Modée | Earth | 10/21/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This twofer combines two earlier, separate sets. It deserves five stars for the one of the discs. This is also the reason for grabbing it as soon as possible (if you do not have it already): Chailly's excellent rendition of Mahler's youth cantata, Das Klagende Lied. A bunch of fine singers contribute to this great performance: Susan Dunn (soprano); Brigitte Fassbaender (mezzo-soprano); Markus Baur (boy soprano); Werner Hollweg (tenor); Andreas Schmidt (bass). The orchestra is Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin
and Städtischer Musikverein Düsseldorf provides the choir. In all respects, this is the first choice among Klagende Lieds. Chailly's interpretation is sensitive to the drama of Mahler's youth score, and the orchestra and vocalists are all in top form. Moreover, the recording is very good, spacious and dynamic.
The second disc contains the Mahler song cycles for solo voice and orchestra. Brigitte Fassbaender sings well. But her interpretation is no match for Janet Baker's outstanding performance, which we have in the classic Barbirolli set (EMI). A fine (but not great) performance, though, and one could do a lot worse.
To sum up: Strongly recommended for Das Klagande Lied.
Fascinating for Fassbaender's singing, and the Klagende Lied
Santa Fe Listener | Santa Fe, NM USA | 10/23/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This 1989 account of Das Klagende Lied became an instant classic, especially among British critics, the moment it appeared. Decca's sonics are excellent, and Chailly marshals his forces expertly. The Berlin Radio Sym. Orch., an ensemble he greatly improved during his tenure there, plays vividly, and both chorus and soloists are outstanding. I'm not sure that Chailly finds the most impact in the first movement, the weakest of the three (Mahler excised it from the performing edition in later years), and the gruesomeness of the second and third movements could be more grotesque. Chailly doesn't outdo Boulez's gripping acocunt on Sony for sheer brilliance. Even so, this deluxe version remains among the best overall.
I was more drawn to Fassbaender's traversal of Mahler's three song cycles, along with a trio of songs selected from Des Knaben Wunderhorn. She comes into direct competition with two other great mezzos, Janet Baker and Christa Ludwig, both on EMI. They are more womanly and yielding in their approach, and more varied in their emotional range. (Fassbaender is unable to be humorous or ethereal, two moods that Mahler frequently calls upon in his songs.)
But Fassbaender adds an anxious edginess, almost like a Berlin cabaret singer, that brings Mahler into the garish expressionist world of Schoenberg and Berg. Her plaintive tone suggests tragedy and heartbreak, even when she's supposed to be singing rapturously. The voice was in excellent shape in 1988-89, and although this Lieder eines Fahrenden Gesellen isn't as biting and anguished as Fassbaender's earlier account with Sinopoli on DG, it's searing enough to burn your ears. Chailly's accompaniment is decidedly less cutting; it exhibits his customary polish and refinement. In my judgment soloist and conductor mesh best in Kindertotenlieder, with the Fahrenden Gesellen cycle as runner-up."