Every two weeks, Alexander Street offers a free music download from our popular online music collection. This download is freely available, regardless of whether or not your library subscribes to the collection.
German composer Robert Schumann (1810–1856) composed his collection of songs, Myrthen, in a particularly momentous and prolific year in his life. After battling the father of his beloved, Clara Wieck, for many months, Robert and Clara finally married in September 1840. This collection was offered to Clara as a wedding present. Schumann composed almost exclusively songs in 1840, his self-declared “Liederjahr,” producing over 100 by 1841. He wrote some of his most famous song cycles in 1840, such as Dichterliebe, the op. 24 and op. 39 song cycles, Frauenliebe und -leben, and Myrthen. With twenty-six songs, Myrthen is the largest collection. Unlike the others which include a single poet’s texts, Schumann set several poets’ texts in Myrthen, including Rückert, Goethe, Heine, and Robert Burns (translated into German). The four songs offered here, “Widmung”, “Aus den östlichen Rosen”, “Lieder der Braut aus dem Liebesfrühling I” and “Lieder der Braut aus dem Liebesfrühling II”, were all written by Friedrich Rückert.
This recording is performed by soprano Dame Margaret Price and Thomas Dewey.