Chamber Music

Umsungen: the world of vocal music

A family get-together: Magdalena Kožená and Sir Simon Rattle will do the honours at this concert. Exceptionally, Sir Simon will be seated at the piano, accompanying his wife on songs by Richard Strauss and Antonín Dvo?ák. But the evening’s unusual programme requires additional instrumentalists: in vocal works by Ernest Chausson, Igor Stravinsky, Maurice Ravel, Leoš Janá?ek and Johannes Brahms, the voice is accompanied by quite diverse but very appealing combinations of instruments.

Magdalena Kožená Mezzo-Soprano

Sir Simon Rattle Piano

Daishin Kashimoto Violin

Rahel Rilling Violin

Amihai Grosz Viola

Dávid Adorján Cello

Kaspar Zehnder Flute

Andrew Marriner Clarinet

Ernest Chausson

Chanson perpétuelle for soprano, piano and string quartet

Igor Stravinsky

Three Songs from William Shakespeare for mezzo-soprano, flute, clarinet and viola

Maurice Ravel

Chansons madécasses for singing voice, flute, cello and piano

Richard Strauss

Drei Lieder der Ophelia for high singing voice and piano op. 67 Nos. 1 – 3

Johannes Brahms

Fünf Ophelia-Lieder (Version for soprano and string quartet)

Johannes Brahms

Two Songs for contralto, viola and piano op. 91

Leoš Janáček

Říkadla 1 (Nursery Rhymes 1) for mezzo-soprano, clarinet and piano

Antonín Dvořák

Má píseň zas (My Song of Love Rings Through the Dusk) and Široké rukávy (In his wide, airy linen vesture) from Gypsy Songs op. 55

Antonín Dvořák

Mé srdce často (In pain, my heart often broods) from Four Songs op. 2

Antonín Dvořák

Žalo dievča (Down in Temesvar) from In Folk Tone op. 73

Antonín Dvořák

Když mne stará matka (Songs My Mother Taught Me) and Struna naladěna (Tune thy strings, Oh Gypsy) from Gypsy Melodies op. 55

Dates and Tickets


A family get-together: Magdalena Kožená and Sir Simon Rattle will do the honours in the series Umsungen – The World of Vocal Music. Exceptionally, Sir Simon will be seated at the piano at this concert. The two will receive prominent support from the 1st philharmonic concertmaster Daishin Kashimoto and his orchestra colleagues, 1st principal viola Amihai Grosz, as well as the renowned violinist and daughter of Helmuth Rilling, Rahel Rilling, the principal cellist of the DSO Berlin, Dávid Adorján, the flutist Kaspar Zehnder and Andrew Marriner (son of conductor Sir Neville Marriner), principal clarinet of the London Symphony Orchestra for many years.

Besides Chausson’s tragic scene Chanson perpétuelle, Ravel’s exotic Chansons madécasses are on the programme, which the composer himself considered one of his most important works. Also represented: three Shakespeare settings from 1953 which reflect Stravinsky’s grappling with Anton Webern’s music – the third song was extolled as Stravinsky’s very best song. With the Drei Lieder der Ophelia based on a Shakespeare translation by Karl Simrock, you will also be able to hear some of the most challenging lieder that Richard Strauss composed. Brahms’s Ophelia Lieder in a version for voice and string quartet constitute a charming contrast: simple works in which the composer intended to conjure up the atmosphere of the Elizabethan age. The evening will be rounded off by vocal compositions by Janáček and Dvořák.

(c) Harald Hoffmann