Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Erlkoening II

Comments and email from various people prompt me to post a few more versions of  Schubert's Erlkoenig.

Here's Marian Anderson, who has a fabulously dark voice for the father, dropping into her contralto range.

Overall, I find Anderson somewhat less dramatic than those singers with more stage experience, and the last line, with the tiny sob, isn't as effective as other singers'.

Here's Ian Bostridge with Julius Drake; a genuinely otherworldly sound for the Erlkoening.

And a bit of a curiosity, Anne-Sofie von Otter with Claudio Abbado and the Chamber Orchestra of Europe; very very dramatic.


Zwölftöner said...

I didn't click on the Bostridge link posted earlier but listening to it now the transfer takes too much of the tension out of it; one of those performances perhaps best experienced live.

On a related topic, I'd be interested to hear any thoughts on Ernst's Grand Caprice, which seems to me a hell of a risk without much musical payoff even when it does go vaguely right. It flares up as an encore from time to time and I wonder if anyone here has had a positive experience and if so, with which violinists.

Joshua Kosman said...

Let's also not forget the famous translation of Goethe's poem into perfectly scanned Zemblan, which begins,

Ret woren ok spoz on natt ut vett?
Eto est votchez ut mid ik dett.

To my knowledge, no composer has yet set this version to music.

Anonymous said...

I like the Munch-esque animation that goes with the Bostridge. Very evocative.

Who wrote the orchestral arrangement for the von Otter/Abbado version, do you know? It's very good, and suits the song well, even though it's not particularly Schubertian.

The sound quality on that one, though - ack! My guess is that this video is a line tap off of a television set.

Lisa Hirsch said...

Zwölftöner, I'm going to put your question in its own posting. I don't know the piece myself.


C, don't know how that YouTube video got up there; it certainly could have been taken from a TV broadcast. But the performance is available on a DG video. The orchestral arrangement, which I agree is fantastic, is by some guy named Berlioz.