Schubert - Winterreise D911 [24bit FLAC] (Jonas Kaufmann)

  • 23.06.2016, 16:39,
  • Music
Schubert — Winterreise D911 [24bit FLAC] (Jonas Kaufmann)

Franz SCHUBERT (1797-1828)
Winterreise, D911
Jonas Kaufmann (substance); Helmut Deutsch (piano)
rec. 22-27 October 2013, August Everding Saal, Grünwald, Germany

SONY TRADITIONAL 88883 795652 [70:16]

Jonas Kaufmann and Helmut Deutsch recorded Die schöne Müllerin away in 2009. That recording, made while Kaufmann was still a Decca artist, was recorded living in concert. Now, originally on in his new decrease with Sony, he gives us a recording of Winterreise made under studio conditions. I bought the earlier recording when it came out and I initiate a high-minded bargain to esteem in it so I was craving to sanction Kaufmann in this second high-minded Wilhelm Müller sequence.

It’s perhaps value making an awareness, even at the chance of stating the simple. Kaufmann has a very big, operatic spokesman that’s well suited to, say, Puccini and Verdi and with more than a baritonal taint to it. As such, though he’s more than qualified of fining down his spokesman – and does so continually here — he offers a very different episode in this sequence as compared to the lighter voices of tenors such as Streak Padmore (discuss), Peter Pears (discuss) or Peter Schreier (discuss). I’m au courant that all three of those singers – and many others who have recorded Winterreise — are no strangers to the operatic put on but I embroidered that in Kaufmann’s if it happens the steadiness of his m is more weighted towards opera than to Lieder and one is continually reminded, while listening, that here is a euphonious actor at work.

Kaufmann comes to Winterreise with a menacing operatic standing but he is less famous as a recitalist, the earlier recording of Die schöne Müllerin regardless of. However, it is discerning from listening to this act that he has meditation very carefully about the euphonious and shocking issues of the sequence as a whole and of the personal songs. Revisiting a few of the songs from his account of Die schöne Müllerin I formed the idea, perhaps wrongly, that his spokesman sounded lighter in that 2009 recording than is the if it happens here. That’s not to denote for a twinkling of an eye that Kaufmann does not recruit a foolish spokesman when appropriate in Winterreise. It may be that he feels that Winterreise requires darker colours and more vocal heft – and that’s a very defensible go out of one's way to of think of – or it may be that in the four years that sort these recordings his spokesman has acquired additional hues and has matured even further into an even more evocative and heterogeneous instrument.

Throughout this act Kaufmann deploys an impressively broad sweep of vocal colouring. He gives an originally example of this in Gefrorne Tränen where the colours add to his expressiveness. The very last collocation, ‘des ganzen Winters Eis!’, is delivered with a very intense, operatic richness which, I must say, took me by astonishment at first. I’d expected assertive singing at this go out of one's way to – the collocation is sizeable ‘stark’, after all – but this is the titillating perceptive of an operatic substance unbelievably much in intense cry. It’s not the last example of Kaufmann ‘letting go’ in this act, either. However, such moments are icy for the appropriate junctures and so divulge their streak all the more tellingly when they occur.

On the other side of the ledger, as it were, Kaufmann often fines down his singing to an impressively controlled mezza voce. Among several examples that I illustrious were the unchangeable stanza of Gute Nacht, the third and sixth stanzas of Frühlingstraum and the whole of Der Leiermann.

Having a chorus-boy with Kaufmann’s high-powered sweep and shocking sensibility pays actual dividends in terms of the contrasts that he can aftermath within a bother. Thus, for example, there’s an plenty of high-powered place against surrounded by the turbulence of Die Wetterfahne and again in Wasserflut. In Einsamkeit the childbirth of the first two stanzas sounds distant but Kaufmann turns on the force and power for the third stanza. If you want to sanction an example of his shocking sensibility prick up one's ears to Irrlicht; this is a act by a chorus-boy normal to the put on and who can deploy a broad sweep of colours and dynamics to offer out all the implication of the words.

For all Kaufmann’s vocal gallantry there are some facets of the sequence that I don’t believe he brings out as well as some other singers I’ve heard. This is not to cut down his achievements here but rather to emphasise that certain types of singers are better equipped than others at bringing out nuances in these songs. For example, consider Der Greise Kopf. The singing as such is very evocative but I disregard the glacial cool that a chorus-boy such as Schreier could offer to the send-off lines. That said, Kaufmann is very significant in his own way, not least in the bald richness with which he delivers the last strategy of the second stanza. His reading of Die Krähe is compelling but I’ve heard some other versions in which the scariness of the crow’s self-possession is brought out more vividly. However, Schubert’s music is so tireless and so multi-faceted that it’s extortionate to guess that any chorus-boy will be able to rescue everything.

That last communiqu is frankly of the three tenors that I mentioned at the start of this discuss. All of them – and others — offer things to Winterreise that are distinguished in their own right and so does Jonas Kaufmann. His singing of this sequence is very evocative.

The ascendancy of the reading is due in no ashamed barometer to the contribution of pianist Helmut Deutsch. He is a honoured accompanist and his episode and insights offer a sizeable amount to this act.

Jonas Kaufmann’s many admirers will certainly want to sanction this new recording and I think that Lieder collectors will also want to sanction one of the most acclaimed of today’s voices in some of the greatest Lieder in the repertoire.

John Quinn

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