Das Rosenband: Songs by R Strauss, Medins & Kalnins | Skani LMIC083

Das Rosenband: Songs by R Strauss, Medins & Kalnins


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Label: Skani

Cat No: LMIC083

Format: CD

Number of Discs: 1

Genre: Vocal/Choral

Release Date: 15th January 2021



Das Rosenband traces Art Nouveau aesthetics in the form of art song by Richard Strauss and his lesser known Latvian contemporaries Alfrēds Kalniņš and Jānis Mediņš, some of which are recorded here for the first time.

In a recent interview Hamburg-based Latvian soprano Inga Kalna described the programme as “musical Art Nouveau about the theme of love with extremely poetic imagery. Lots and lots of nature: evening, morning, sunny daytime, night. Autumn leaves and the groaning sea, moonlit waters and a summer evening’s breeze.

“Of course, there are lots of flowers characteristic of Art Nouveau: roses, water lilies, ivy. It has love poetry in all of its aspects: general, sensual and even religious. Love for nature and one’s homeland. Love for one another, for the seasons and for the whole world embracing us. Lots of melancholy longing. Everything we imagine when we hear the word ‘love’ is included in this programme! I think this is an elegant programme, stylistically presented in a unified palette of colour. Here, the national and international are entwined.

“This aspect of music fascinates me tremendously - how what is unique to each nation is preserved, yet at the same time it addresses a very broad range of people, and everyone can find something of themselves in it. [..] Richard Strauss is very operatic and very intellectual. He is operatic in his largesse. His music is vivid: generous texture, rich harmonies, extremely broad phrases, an understanding of all the instruments.

“For singers, this music demands an unusual amount of breath control and absolute, 100% conviction. Strauss’s music is like an opera house with its wine-red seats and dark-red curtain with a golden fringe - lavish, velvety, golden, lustrous, rich and intellectual. But I also very much like the music written by the Latvian masters Jānis Mediņš and Alfrēds Kalniņš. For example, Medins immediately makes me think of Art Nouveau. I see Alberta iela and Riga’s Art Nouveau buildings.”

You may also like: LMIC045 Latvian Songs performed by Egils Siliņš (bass-baritone) and Maris Skuja (piano).

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