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Spotlight on: Schumann's Dichterliebe

The Dichterliebe, recorded by Thom Denijs in 1928 (HMV 092026)

Schumann’s Dichterliebe, op. 48, from 1840 weds music and text into one of the most memorable song cycles of the Romantic period. The cycle consists of sixteen songs on poems from Heinrich Heine’s Lyrisches Intermezzo. The earliest recordings of the entire cycle were by Dutch baritone, Thom Denijs (1877-1935), who recorded the cycle twice in London with his wife, Emmy Denijs-Kruyt (1878-1964), as pianist, first in an acoustic recording on 5 April 1923 and later as an electrical recording in three sessions in January and July 1928.

These are the 1928 discs. Denijs was best known as a concert and oratorio singer. He made a number of recordings including some as early as 1900 on Berliner discs. The interpretation of the Dichterliebe shows a free declamatory style rarely heard in performances of the piece today.

The recording was acquired by the Belva Kibler and Donald P. Morgan Memorial Fund.

ARS Gramophone 2-092022--2-092027

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Author

Jerry McBride
Head Librarian, Music Library, Head Librarian, Archive of Recorded Sound
(650) 725-1146 (650) 384-9817