Schumann: Op. 42-8, Frauenliebe und Leben

🎼🎶 Thursday, June 24, 2021
The song cycle „Frauenliebe und –leben“ (A woman’s life and love) ends with the woman having to face the rest of her life alone after her husband’s death.
The poet, Adelbert Chamisso, penned a last verse in which the woman is speaking to her granddaughter; Robert Schumann omits the final verse and closes with the piano alone heartbreakingly playing the first song, “Seit ich ihn gesehen” (Since I first saw him). Beethoven, in pioneering the song cycle form, ended “An die ferne Geliebte” (To the distant beloved), by returning to the theme of the first song, thus closing the circle, the piano playing it first without words, then the voice singing the final verses.
Nun hast du mir den ersten Schmerz getan,
Der aber traf.
Du schläfst, du harter, unbarmherz’ger Mann,
Den Todesschlaf.
Es blicket die Verlassne vor sich hin,
Die Welt ist leer.
Geliebet hab ich und gelebt,
Ich bin nicht lebend mehr.
Ich zieh mich in mein Innres still zurück,
Der Schleier fällt,
Da hab ich dich und mein verlornes Glück,
Du meine Welt!
---
Now you’ve hurt me for the first time,
But it struck hard.
You sleep, you hard and merciless man,
The sleep of death.
The abandoned one looks ahead,
The world is empty.
I have loved and lived,
I’m no longer living.
Quietly I withdraw into myself,
The veil falls;
There I have you and my lost happiness,
You, my world!
Schumann: Frauenliebe und -leben Op.42 - 8. Nun hast du mir den ersten Schmerz getan
Schumann: Frauenliebe und -leben Op.42 - 8. Nun hast du mir den ersten Schmerz getan

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  • John Scialdone
    published this page in Daily Beethoven 2021-06-24 08:24:45 -0400

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