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Schubert - Winterreise


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Product details

  • Audio CD (29 May 2006)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Onyx
  • ASIN: B000FI9058
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 240,621 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Samples
Song Title Time Price
Listen  1. Winterreise: Gute Nacht 4:45£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  2. Winterreise: Die Wetterfahne 1:40£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  3. Winterreise: Gefrorne Tränen 2:19£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  4. Winterreise: Erstarrung 2:53£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  5. Winterreise: Der Lindenbaum 4:41£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  6. Winterreise: Wasserflut 3:38£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  7. Winterreise: Auf Dem Flusse 3:25£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  8. Winterreise: Rückblick 2:03£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  9. Winterreise: Irrlicht 2:51£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen10. Winterreise: Rast 3:11£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen11. Winterreise: Frühlingstraum 4:18£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen12. Winterreise: Einsamkeit 2:43£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen13. Winterreise: Die Post 2:16£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen14. Winterreise: Der Greise Kopf 3:21£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen15. Winterreise: Die Krähe 1:30£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen16. Winterreise: Letzte Hoffnung 2:20£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen17. Winterreise: Im Dorfe 3:00£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen18. Winterreise: Der Stürmische Morgen0:51£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen19. Winterreise: Täuschung 1:27£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen20. Winterreise: Der Wegweiser 3:17£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen21. Winterreise: Das Wirtshaus 3:49£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen22. Winterreise: Mut! 1:22£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen23. Winterreise: Die Nebensonnen 2:49£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen24. Winterreise: Der Leiermann 4:02£0.99  Buy MP3 

Product Description

Product Description

ONYXC 4010 FC; ONYX CLASSICS - Inghilterra; Classica Lirica Lied

Review

Sopranos and mezzos have sung Schubert s Winterreise before Brigitte Fassbaender s performance is a prime example but not often. And at first, Schäfer s bright, sturdy timbre, combined with a sometimes shockingly brisk pace in some of the opening songs, makes one doubt the wisdom of this. But little by little, the atmosphere intensifies, as if Schäfer were charting a journey from the bogus emotions of adolescence to the more genuine, bittersweet feelings of adulthood, and by the end she wins us over completely. Schneider s piano-playing is beautifully weighted and exquisitely coloured. --Sunday Times - 25July 2006

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Endymion on 14 Aug. 2013
Format: Audio CD
Having struggled with Winterreise for many years, I find Ms Schafer's approach fresh and revealing. Here is an artist who really 'sings' the songs. She embraces the individuality of each song and refrains from over-emphasising the inherent mood of melancholy and isolation. A weary sense of resignation is perhaps most evident. Some might resist the female voice for Winterreise as it is so closely associated with many of the great male lieder singers. However, I would encourage those interested in Schubert, lieder and singing to listen with open ears. This disc has given me great pleasure and encouraged me to return to the several other highly respected recordings in my library. So much so that I am on the hunt for additional versions. Highly recommended.
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3 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Bezza on 13 April 2010
Format: Audio CD
A lot of work for very little result. Winterreise is not a song cycle for women. Not the woman's voice, as I once heard an excellent counter-tenor rendition of this work. But, all technical considerations aside, it's just not female. Not even über-butch lesbian. I heard Schäfer sing this in concert too and, if anything, she was even less convincing live. With the best will in the world - and I wanted to like it - I simply couldn't match the narrative, the tone of voice or the observations made, with any woman I had ever met or even imagined. That aside, the soprano female voice is too shrill for this repertoire, losing the words the minute it moves into the head. So you can't even hear what she is singing about, even if it did make sense coming from a woman's mouth. It doesn't. It really doesn't.

If I could, I would award Schäfer zero stars for her crassness and lack of musical intelligence. My two stars are for the outstanding playing of her accompanist who, incidentally, carried her like a baby when I saw them live together. Perhaps I caught her on a off-night. Perhaps she just doesn't know the work that well. After all, you'd have to have extremely scant knowledge of it to attempt to sing it like this. In the interests of balance, her recording company should ask Goerne to record and tour Frauenliebe und Leben.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 8 reviews
20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
Incisive reading 24 Nov. 2006
By David G. Tegnell - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
From the Gramophone review by Alan Blyth, 9/06: "Christine Schäfer goes at the work with a will, singing it in an urgent, rather aggressive way that provides little solace to the ear. She hurries the music along, and given that hers is very far from being the ideal voice for the work, the impression left is rather a superficial one: sopranos tackle the work at their peril. Add her partner's rough-hewn, over-recorded support and the disc is something of a write-off."

It would be unfortunate if Blyth's review were to discourage listeners from investing in this lovely recording. The reading by Christine Schafer and Eric Schneider is anything but superficial. These performers bring to the cycle a modernist sensibility: Schafer filters Schubert through Schoenberg and Berg, not infrequently applying hints of sprechstimme. Schneider, who accompanied Christine Oelze on her Webern recording, is a full partner in this approach.

The soprano voice is in no way inappropriate. The text is of course metaphorical; the narrator only nominally male. In her interpretation, Schafer discovers Goethe's fragile and unstable Mignon at the heart of the German Romantic sensibility (Schafer has recorded Schubert's Mignon settings for the Hyperion Schubert series). And further, she delineates the relationship between Winterreise's harrowing vision of alienation and that of Schoenberg's Pierrot Lunaire. Perhaps only a female singer could bring out these aspects of the cycle.

By no means are all of the tempos hurried. Schafer takes Gute Nacht at a brisk pace, treating it with detachment--as exposition, rather than autobiography. But throughout, Schafer selects dramatically appropriate tempi, and invariably finds rhythmic character that many other singers miss. With the addition of a perfect legato, she makes each piece cohere, as song.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
A beautifully stark presentation 19 Oct. 2006
By Tom Lawrence - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Christine Schäfer doesn't wear her heart on her sleeve in this recording of Winterreise, she keeps it locked in the icebox. Instead of using her high soprano to embody the protagonist, she sings with understated dispatch (almost a whisper in some passages) to paint Schubert's bleak landscape. In doing so she magnifies the suppressed anguish of the wanderer. Accompanist Eric Schneider keeps the journey moving with a brisk, light touch.

The packaging is equally stark -- raised letters on a white cover as if the title were buried in snow; the poems printed one per page surrounded by blankness; an absence of commentary. Each song is displayed in uncluttered focus, letting the music speak for itself.

The first few bars are disorienting; the quick pace and trebly voice will make you think this disc is playing at the wrong speed. The 'Chipmunks' effect soon passes as you are drawn into the psychological drama. You might be hesitant to lay out $20 for yet another Winterreise, but this chilling performance is well worth the money.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
harrowing and beautiful 29 Nov. 2006
By L. Gallagher - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I agree completely with David Tegnell's review, posted above. With all due respect to the eminence of Alan Blyth, Blyth's emphatic resistance to the modernist reading undertaken by Schafer and Schneider not only discounts the musicological trajectory that justifiably links Schubert's idiom with twentieth-century innovations, it also creates the impression that "Winterreise" lies, definitely, outside Schafer's "Fach." Those who love this cycle should buy this disc and listen for themselves. Nothing -- especially when you consider the already well-stocked library of female versions of the cycle, some of which have attained iconic status -- indicates that the material is out of bounds for Schafer. More to the point, there is a complex, musky character to Schafer's timbre -- a feature her voice shares with that of her wonderful German compatriot Dorothea Roschmann, also a superb exponent of lieder -- that lends itself startlingly well to the landscape of depression, muted nostalgia, and eviscerated hope conveyed by music and text. Listening to Schafer, I cannot help thinking of the way in which celebrated accounts of the cycle by bass-baritone voices (Hotter, Fischer-Dieskau) present an acoustic image of Everyman in extremis. Like her female predecessors -- including Fassbaender, Ludwig, and Stutzmann -- Schafer skillfully employs the resources of her voice to convey not so much the voice of Everyman as that of No One. Hers is a chronicle of someone already moribund, already en route to becoming absent. (And, unlike Fassbaender and Ludwig, she has the advantage of recording the cycle while still in full possession of her vocal skills.) Schneider, by virtue of the pristine but radically unsentimental pacing of his accompaniment, is an ideal partner. I wouldn't want to be without Fischer-Dieskau's or Matthias Goerne's versions, but among female traversals only Nathalie Stutzmann's powerfully moving version, in contralto register, offer a comparably gripping account of this essential work.
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
FINALLY! 8 Dec. 2006
By DAVIDNYC1023 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
-- I couldn't live without Winterreise. I have at least 2 dozen recordings of it. I think the most beautiful performances on disc (UNTIL NOW, FINALLY) are all by men: Matthias Goerne (with Johnson, not with Brendel - the Brendel has applause IMMEDIATELY before and IMMEDIATELY after, so distracting and almost offensive, though the performance is stunning, if it didn't have applause it would be my top choice), Peter Pears, Jon Vickers... I have female versions of this by Hunter-Bradley, Ludwig, Baird, Stutzmann, and partial performances by Lehmann and Gerhardt -- (and, now, Schaefer)... I don't know if I'd go so far as to say Christine Schaefer's is the only Winterreise I will ever need, but it is really very close, quite near. It's ice cold and scorching hot. It's so isolated and desolate, clean and pure. The piano playing (by Eric Schneider - who appears on Goerne's definitive Schubert Die Schoene Muellerin) is extraordinary, outstanding. The singing, I don't know, there's something magical to her voice, wondrous. It's like time itself singing, the voice of infinity. Stark, harrowing. I felt as if my heart stopped. This is really a stunning stunning performance in terms of singer, pianist, recording, and presentation. I love this disc, and I will live with it, lovingly, incredibly grateful, for quite some time... Side note, another "finally," FINALLY a perfect recital disc for Christine Schafer. She appears on some amazing operas/cantatas, but I've never never been completely satisfied with her "solo" efforts - maybe because I haven't been ultimately satisfied with her accompaniment (I'm not wild and crazy for Irwin Cage on either of their discs (though both are quite lovely and tender and really really good) or Graham Johnson on either of their discs (though both are, again, quite good)) - Eric Schneider is the best voice-recital pianist, I hope their partnership (and also his partnership with Goerne) lasts and lasts!
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Harrowing, Incredible 27 May 2011
By Henry James - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Like many here, I have heard dozens of recordings of this otherworldly masterpiece, and none has moved me and terrified me and left me awe-struck as much as this one.

I agree with virtually everything Gallagher and the 2 Davids said in detail, so I won't repeat it.

I will just note a couple of points of agreement: it IS like the work is being sung by No One, rather than your literal male DFD narrator - the voice of infinity and fate.

And I also think that the pianist is spectacular, a perfect match for C.S.
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