Schubert - Miquel Penadés
Schubert - M. Penadés
On 5th February 2012 I posted on this blog for the very first time; the post title was A blog about what? Now, two years later, Liederabend is still on the blogosphere; this week we are celebrating our birthday and I think this is a good time for some acknowledgements.

Thanks to:
  • All of you, readers, for being there; either old or new ones, faithful or occasional. Thank you for your comments too; here on the blog there are a few, but you also comment on Facebook, on Twitter, by e-mail or having a coffee. It's true that the comments are scattered, but it's also true that you are entitled to choose the more convenient channel. And it's really gratifying to know that what is written is of interest to someone.
  • You, dear friends, that devoted your time to write a post on this blog. You know that I really love having more hands writing here.
  • Miquel Penadés, the author of this post's illustration. This is my Schubert and I'm really excited about Miquel's present. It won’t be the last time you see this image (in fact, I should have said “one of these images” because there is more than one version) here again.
We can go over what we did during the past year by looking at the right column, which keeps on growing:
  • A glance at the figures, as we did one year ago: we listened to 55 songs and added to the drop down lists quite a lot of names: 17 composers, 27 poets, 26 singers and 26 pianists. That means that in two years we put together 110 different songs, 48 composers, 70 poets, 69 singers and 63 pianists. I guess you wondered about those figures in the post title... there you go!
  • We succeeded in finishing the ten saddest songs list and, although I said the following one would only have five songs, I accepted a friend's challenge and completed the ten happiest songs list. So, now we have Georgia O'Keefe's Poppy besides Ramon Casas' Nude woman, and the respective Spotify lists.
  • I've been daring enough to begin an open series about Wilhelm Meisters Lehrejahre, the literary work that inspired most Art Songs. So far, five posts and the three first songs have been posted, all of them available clicking on the Tischbein's painting.
  • We also had two interviews this year, with the baritone Simon Keenlyside and with the artistic director of the Schubertiada a Vilabertran Jordi Roch. I'm still in awe of their good disposition and, of course, I'm also extremely grateful.
  • Finally, and to finish this overview, I have been posting in English since last September; before that, all posts were only in Catalan. Back then, I thought it was a good idea; now I'm not that sure. But we are still in a “sort of” testing period so I'll keep posting in English for some more months. After, I don’t know, we'll see. What do you think? Is it worth the effort? I'll be delighted to know your opinion on this matter.
We should celebrate the anniversary with some music, don't you think? We are listening, of course, a Lied by the apple of my eye, the beautiful Nähe des Geliebten, written by Schubert at 18 from a poem by the ubiquitous Goethe. I’m very aware that I've been avoiding a piece of information but I'll tell you before you ask: yes, I’m still under a baritonephilia syndrome, I can’t help it. Out of the 38 singers that we listened, 15 were baritons and sang 42% of the songs. So, it won't surprise you that this Lied is performed by Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, accompanied by Gerald Moore.
Nähe des Geliebten 

Ich denke dein, wenn mir der Sonne Schimmer
Vom Meere strahlt;
Ich denke dein, wenn sich des Mondes Flimmer
In Quellen malt.

Ich sehe dich, wenn auf dem fernen Wege
Der Staub sich hebt;
In tiefer Nacht, wenn auf dem schmalen Stege
Der Wandrer bebt.

Ich höre dich, wenn dort mit dumpfem Rauschen
Die Welle steigt.
Im stillen Hain da geh ich oft zu lauschen,
Wenn alles schweigt.

Ich bin bei dir, du seist auch noch so ferne.
Du bist mir nah!
Die Sonne sinkt, bald leuchten mir die Sterne.
O wärst du da!

Penso en tu quan la resplendor del sol
m'arriba des del mar;
penso en tu quan la claror de la lluna
dibuixa la font.

Et veig quan al camí llunyà
s'hi aixeca la pols;
a la nit profonda, quan a l'estreta passera
el caminant vacil·la.

Et sento quan allà, amb sorda remor
s'alça l'onada.
Sovint vaig al tranquil bosquet a escoltar
quan tot és en silenci.

Sóc a prop teu, i encara que tu ets tan lluny,
ets a prop meu!
El sol es pon, aviat m'il·luminaran els estels.
O, si fossis aquí!


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