Liszt: Lieder: Die drei Zigeuner; Loreley; Ich möchte hingehn; Mignons Lied; Ãœber allen Gipfeln ist Ruh etc

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COMPOSERS: Liszt
LABELS: Berlin
ALBUM TITLE: Liszt
WORKS: Lieder: Die drei Zigeuner; Loreley; Ich möchte hingehn; Mignons Lied; Über allen Gipfeln ist Ruh etc
PERFORMER: Ruth Ziesak (soprano), Gerold Huber (piano)
CATALOGUE NO: 0016282BC

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Liszt’s songs turn up far less frequently in recital than Schumann’s, Brahms’s or Wolf’s, which are on a comparable level of excellence. Ruth Ziesak’s selection of 21, including some of the best known, forms a good introduction to their varied merits, and her strong interpretative skills, especially in her detailed attention to text and her intelligent use of what is essentially a fairly limited range of vocal colours, stand her in good stead. These performances also demonstrate a close artistic relationship with her accompanist, Gerold Huber, whose measured and characterful playing matches both the repertoire and her vocalism to a nicety. Liszt was a forward-looking composer, and there are striking anticipations of the French impressionists here in ‘Ihr Glocken von Marling’ and, even more surprisingly, a pre-quote of the opening of his son-in-law Richard Wagner’s Tristan in ‘Loreley’, composed in 1841, over 20 years before the opera was premiered. Despite his status as a piano virtuoso, there are relatively few songs in which the accompaniment grabs attention from the singer, and where it does in ‘Die drei Zigeuner’ its presentation of a Hungarian gypsy band is reason enough. Elsewhere, the intimacy of many examples is a delight, something reflected in the overall sound. George Hall