New release November 4th | Ars Antiqua Austria | Gunar Letzbor Amandus Ivanschiz

Christoph Prégardien / Michael Gees

Christoph & Julian Prégardien | Michael Gees: Father & Son (SACD)

Regular price €20,95
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Christoph Prégardien / Michael Gees

Christoph & Julian Prégardien | Michael Gees: Father & Son (SACD)

Regular price €20,95
Unit price
per 
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Father and Son

Christoph & Julian Prégardien | Michael Gees

Challenge Classics / HQ|NORTHSTAR

Catalogue CC72645

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About the Album

The conditions under which Schubert’s art of the song developed into a kaleidoscopically incandescent spectrum that crossed over genres and the institutionally set, historical boundaries disappear today as a rule under the pedestal that the late nineteenth century began to erect for the composer. The traces of improvisational practice were increasingly lost within a music culture that stylised the printed manuscript into a quasi sacred object. A particularly successful way of leading back to a fundamental impetus in Schubert’s art of the song is through an approach towards the songs that takes the moment of spontaneous performance seriously as a communicative act, without denying the work character of Schubert’s music. The idea of ‘one’ universal human voice seems to materialise with particular intensity in the commingling of two voices of similar timbre, which can permanently interchange and double their identity. Based on our knowledge for instance of the Schubertiade reminiscences of 1868, remembered and noted down by Moritz von Schwind, can we not imagine that the ‘Schubert singers’ Johann Michael Vogl and Karl von Schönstein might indeed have sung alternately (or even in unison)?

Christoph Prégardien:

When a second part suddenly crops up in a Schubert song, many people say of course: are we allowed to do this to Schubert? Even I had to be persuaded at first to consider the improvisational element, however, our approach to adopting it didn’t happen arbitrarily, but in the context of our awareness of music-making in past centuries.

Michael Gees:

You can formulate reasons that aren’t based on historical knowledge but ensue from the music itself. “Nacht und Träume” (Night and Dreams), for example – you listen to this music, you hear that it bears a potential within: the potential of starting out from the rather simple structure and being able to ramify practically into endlessness. This opens up spaces in which you can go on fantasising without bounds. In this context our versions are not actually “contrived”, but formed by “eavesdropping” on the music itself to a certain degree. If I hear it, I hear something like another “I”, another self, a corresponding multi-voice being.

Julian Prégardien:

In our arrangements we first and foremost wanted an encounter with the prodigious complexity of Schubert’s oeuvre in lied and to show that boundaries overlap! Schubert composed the song “Widerspruch” (Contradiction) in two versions in any case – namely the solo version and as an ensemble lied – and we are now in a way adding a third. With “Licht und Liebe” (Light and Love) we have also included an original composition for two voices, as well as dramatic ballads, convivial vocal ensembles and elegiacally meditative solo songs which we have “heard” anew and arranged in various ways.

Album tracks

  1. Frisch gesungen

  2. Ännchen von Tharau

  3. O wie herbe ist das Scheiden

  4. Loreley

  5. Erlkönig

  6. Wanderers Nachtlied

  7. Zum Rundtanz

  8. Die Nacht

  9. Im Abendrot

  10. Fischers Liebesglück

  11. Auf dem Wasser zu singen

  12. Der Zwerg

  13. Meeres Stille

  14. Widerspruch

  15. Licht und Liebe

  16. Nacht und Träume

  17. Frühlingsstrophe

  18. Der betrunkene Sternseher

  19. Ein Traum ist unser Leben

  20. Über allen Gipfeln ist Ruh

  21. Guter Rat

  22. Die Sonne scheint nicht mehr

  23. In stiller Nacht

  24. Erlaube mir, feins Mädchen

  25. Da unten im Tale

  26. Nachtlied

  27. Sternlein

  28. O du stille Zeit

 

Additional photos: Brendon Heinst



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