Heinrich Heine Heine was born of Jewish parents. In that same year, in order to open up the possibility of a civil service career, closed to Jews at that time, he converted to Protestantism with little enthusiasm and some resentment. He never practised law, however, nor held a position in government service; and his student years had been primarily devoted not to the studies for which his uncle had been paying but to poetry, literature, and history. In the spring of he finally went to Paris, where he was to live for the rest of his life.
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Song 12 Op. I am driven by a dark longing up to the wooded heights, there is dissolved in tears my supremely great pain. Song 13 Op. Es ist eine alte Geschichte doch bleibt sie immer neu; und wem sie just passieret, dem bricht das Herz entzwei. Poem XL A young man loves a girl, who has chosen another man, the other loves yet another and has gotten married to her. The girl takes out of resentment the first, best man who crosses her path; the young man is badly off.
It is an old story but remains eternally new, and for him to whom it has just happened it breaks his heart in two. Song 14 Op. The flowers are whispering and speaking, I however wander silently. The flowers are whispering and speaking, and look sympathetically at me: "Do not be angry with our sister, you sad, pale man.
Im Zaubergarten wallen zwei Buhlen, stumm und allein; es singen die Nachtigallen, es flimmert der Mondenschein. Die Jungfrau steht still wie ein Bildnis, der Ritter vor ihr kniet. Da kommt der Riese der Wildnis, die bange Jungfrau flieht. Der Ritter sinkt blutend zur Erde, es stolpert der Riese nach Haus. In a magic garden appear two lovers, mute and alone; the nightingales are singing, the moonlight is shimmering.
The maiden stands still as a portrait, the knight before her kneels. Then comes the giant of the wilderness, the fearful maiden flees. The knight sinks, bleeding, to the earth, then the giant stumbles home. When I am buried, then the fairy-tale is over. Song 16 Op. I sit and reflect and dream, and think on my beloved; then I am greeted by three shadowy forms nodding at the coach.
They hop and make faces, so mocking and yet so shy, and whirl like mist together, and snicker and scurry by. Song 17 Op. Ich wachte auf, und ich weinte noch lange bitterlich. I woke up and the tears still flowed down from my cheeks.
I have in my dreams wept, I dreamed you forsook me. I woke up and I wept for a long time and bitterly. I have in my dreams wept, I dreamed you still were good to me. I woke up, and still now streams my flood of tears. Song 18 Op. Poem LVII Every night in my dreams I see you, and see your friendly greeting, and loudly crying out, I throw myself at your sweet feet. You look at me wistfully and shake your blond little head; from your eyes steal forth little pearly teardrops.
You say to me secretly a soft word, and give me a garland of cypress. I wake up, and the garland is gone, and the word I have forgotten. Song 19 Op. Poem XLIV From old fairy-tales it beckons to me with a white hand, there it sings and there it resounds of a magic land, where colorful flowers bloom in the golden twilight, and sweetly, fragrantly glow with a bride-like face.
And green trees sing primeval melodies, the breezes secretly sound and birds warble in them. And misty images rise indeed forth from the earth, and dance airy reels in fantastic chorus. And blue sparks burn on every leaf and twig, and red lights run in crazy, hazy rings. And loud springs burst out of wild marble stone, and oddly in the brooks shine forth the reflections. If I could enter there and there gladden my heart, and have all anguish taken away, and be free and blessed!
Oh, that land of bliss, I see it often in dreams, but come the morning sun, and it melts away like mere froth. Song 20 Op. Poem LXVI The old, angry songs, the dreams angry and nasty, let us now bury them, fetch a great coffin. In it I will lay very many things, though I shall not yet say what.
The coffin must be even larger than the Heidelberg Tun. And fetch me also twelve giants, who must be yet mightier than mighty St. Christopher in the Cathedral of Cologne on the Rhine. They shall carry the coffin away, and sink it down into the sea, for such a great coffin deserves a great grave. How could the coffin be so large and heavy? I also sank my love with my pain in it.
There are two critical editions worth considering: the Norton critical edition edited in by Arthur Komar which features a complete score, texts and translations, some textual notes, detailed Schenkerian analysis of some of the cycle and essays about Heine and Schumann.
This is the best, cleanest critical edition currently available, and also includes published copies of the four songs deleted from the cycle. For those curious about the original 20 song version, there is a facsimile edition of the autograph draft, which includes all 20 songs and some intriguing musical differences from the final published version.
A mid or low range voice is even worse off. Moreover, Schumann assembled the songs with a clear intent to the sequence of the keys see Komar for the best discussion of this. So even more than in Schubert, it is fairly important to preserve relationships between keys of different songs, and ideally take all the songs down an equal distance.
Partly, this is because some songs inevitably get transformed into awkward keys with any transposition.
In addition, some of the awkward piano writing gets even more awkward when the fingers shift positions on the keys. For those adventuresome enough to try to do a consistent transposition, there is now another option. Glendower Jones at Classical Vocal Reprints has a new published edition of all 20 songs taken down a major second.
Recommended Recordings Dichterliebe is one of the most recorded art song works in the catalog, as this discography shows. I cannot claim to have comprehensive knowledge of the available recordings, but can share information about a few recordings that have been useful to me:.
Dichterliebe, Op.48 (Schumann, Robert)