Friday, April 1, 2011
Nicolai Gedda sings S. Rachmaninoff and A. Tcherepnine
Songs by Sergei Rachmaninoff and Alexandre Tcherepnine / Сергей Рахманинов и Александр Черепнин - Романсы
Nicolai Gedda (tenor) with Alexis Weissenberg and Alexandre Tcherepnine (piano)
High VBR, 115mb on zippyshare (new link 3/6/15)
Они отвечали (They answered), Op.21 № 4
Не пой, красавица (Don't sing, my belle), Op.4 № 4
Сирень (Lilacs), Op.21 № 5
О, не грусти! (Do not be blue), op.14 № 8
Буря (Tempest), Op.34 № 3
К детям (To the children), Op.26 № 7
Христос воскрес (Christ is Risen!), Op.26 № 6
В моем саду я вижу (I see in my garden), Op.26 № 10
В молчаньи ночи тайной (In the night's silence), Op.4 № 3
Вокализ (Vocalise), Op.34 № 14
Здесь хорошо (How peaceful), Op.21 № 7
Отрывок из Альфреда Мюссе (Fragment from A. Musset), Op.21 № 6
Арион (Arion), Op.34 № 5
Сей день я помню (I remember this day), Op.34 № 10
Уж, ты нива моя (Oh my field), Op.4 № 5
Ветер перелётный (A passing breeze), Op.34 № 4
Весенние воды (Spring waters), соч.14 № 11
Озеро (The lake), Op.16 № 3
Три домовины (Three coffins)
Мир одиночества (The world of loneliness)
Береза (Birch tree), Op.33 № 14
Осенняя песня (The autumn song), Op.7 № 1
Свечка догорела (A candle has burned out), Op.21 № 3
This post is for Sergei Rachmaninoff, who was born exactly 138 years ago - happy birthday, Сереженька!
I used to think that classical composers only wrote orchestral symphonies, or at most string quartets - boy, was I ever wrong. A good number of them was able to appreciate the value of small-scale works, and came pretty close to pop music of the day by writing actual songs. Let me quote Hindemith:
In recent years, I have almost entirely turned away from concert music and composed nearly exclusively music with pedagogical or social tendencies; for amateurs, children, broadcast, mechanical instruments, etc. I hold this sort of composition to be more important than writing for concert uses because the latter usually serve only as a technical task for the musicians and have hardly anything to do with the advancement of music.
Songs take a good part of Rachmaninoff's output; a few became standards with at least one - the famous Vocalise - crossing over from the singer's repertoire to a multitude of other instruments; it's been covered on just about anything: violin, French horn, theremin, double bass, jazz quartet, 24 cellos, even hard rock guitar (Slash of G'n'R, I shit you not).
In all truth, art songs, and Rachmaninoff's especially, hardly sound like pop music to а modern ear; a certain effort is necessary to get them - but IMHO it's an effort well spent. A few have conventional structure, but others are small dramatic performances with lyrics driving the development and a richly textured piano part to support and echo the voice, occasionally stepping up into the spotlight. It takes a few listens to follow what is happening, but once you can, it's a whirlwind ride through the peaks of emotion.
This upload is as close to "my own work" as it is going to get - I did some remastering. The dynamics on original were entirely too extreme, I could not make it through a single song without turning the volume knob. So this is compressed from a lossless file and then ripped into high VBR. The classical nerds will murder me for it, but the truth is, I don't care much about hi-fi; and anyway, those who want hi-fi can buy a CD, or better yet, get tickets to a live concert.