Schubertíada Vilabertran 2021
House of Canons of Santa Maria de Vilabertran

This article will be published on the 1st of September, but I am writing it in the middle of the Schubertíada. They're days of intense work, of enjoying wonderful music, of gathering impressions, of reflecting, of taking notes for future articles, but not of sitting down to write calmly.

That's why I'm publishing a momento musical this week, in line with a detail that I'm appreciating these days: the wise choice of the encores. Of course, artists can choose whatever they want, but we, the audience, can receive the pieces as more or less suitable. And, in my opinion, they are usually the icing on the cake.

Probably the most repeated phrase in the introduction of the encores is "this is a Schubertiade, so we would like to end the concert with Schubert's music." In this spirit, I leave you with a Lied performed during the festival, Sehnsucht, D. 636, performed by Gerald Finley and Stephen Ralls. Of course, by the apple of my eye, with poem by Friedrich von Schiller.

Welcolme back if you were on holiday during the last weeks. Next Wednesday we'll start a new season, during which we're celebrating the tenth anniversary of Liederabend.

Sehnsucht, D. 639

Ach, aus dieses Tales Gründen,
Die der kalte Nebel drückt,
Könnt’ ich doch den Ausgang finden,
Ach, wie fühlt’ ich mich beglückt!
Dort erblick’ ich schöne Hügel,
Ewig jung und ewig grün!
Hätt’ ich Schwingen, hätt’ ich Flügel,
Nach den Hügeln zög’ ich hin.

Harmonien hör’ ich klingen,
Töne süsser Himmelsruh’,
Und die leichten Winde bringen
Mir der Düfte Balsam zu,
Gold’ne Früchte seh’ ich glühen,
Winkend zwischen dunkelm Laub,
Und die Blumen, die dort blühen,
Werden keines Winters Raub.

Ach wie schön muss sich’s ergehen
Dort im ew’gen Sonnenschein,
Und die Luft auf jenen Höhen,
O wie labend muss sie sein!
Doch mir wehrt des Stromes Toben,
Der ergrimmt dazwischen braust,
Seine Wellen sind gehoben,
Dass die Seele mir ergraust.

Einen Nachen seh ich schwanken,
Aber ach! der Fährmann fehlt.
Frisch hinein und ohne Wanken,
Seine Segel sind beseelt.
Du musst glauben, du musst wagen,
Denn die Götter leih’n kein Pfand,
Nur ein Wunder kann dich tragen
In das schöne Wunderland.

Ah, from this valley's depths
that cold mists are pressing,
if I could only find a way out,
ah, how lucky I would feel!
Over there I glimpse pretty hills,
ever young and ever green!
If I had pinions, if I had wings,
I would soar over to those hills.

Harmonies I hear tinkling,
tones of sweet, heavenly peace;
and light winds bring
to me the scent of balsam.
Golden fruit I see glowing,
beckoning between dark leaves;
and the flowers that bloom there,
will never become Winter's prey.

Ah, how fine it must be to wander
there in eternal sunshine,
and the air on those heights --
O how refreshing it must be!
Yet I am stymied by the charging river,
that roars between us in rage;
its waves are so high
that my soul is horrified.

I see a small boat rocking there,
but ah! the ferryman is missing.
Go briskly to it and without hesitation:
his sails are ready.
You must believe, you must dare it,
for the Gods make no pledges.
Only a miracle can carry you
into that fair land of wonder.

(translation by Emily Ezust)


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