Friday, January 25, 2013

Awards 2012 - Solo Vocal

"Ferne Geliebte" - Beethoven, Berg, Haydn, Schoenberg
Christian Gerhaher; Gerold Huber

"Each disc by Christian Gerhaher and his accompanist, Gerold Huber, is a keenly awaited event. In this latest recital he spans the history of the German Lied from the earliest song-cycle, Beethoven's An die ferne Geliebte, to what David Murray, in Alan Blyth's Song on Record, describes as 'the last great voice-and-piano cycle in the Lied tradition', Schoenberg's Das Buch der hängenden Gärten. It is a selection of works in which Gerhaher seeks to widen our perception of him, not only as an interpreter but also as a singer technically" - Richard Fairman, Gramophone.
"You can take the beauty of his tone for granted: it’s silky, gentle, warm and very beautiful, a worthy successor to the likes of Fischer-Dieskau. What sets him out as special, however, is the supreme intelligence with which he combines his vocal tone with interpretation of the words. He has the ability to render vivid even a cycle as well known as An die Ferne Geliebte through the way he, for example, holds on to a consonant for just that tiny moment longer, or the way he elides one phrase into another so as to shine a new light on a phrase the listener thinks he knows inside out. He sounds as if he is creating this music not just afresh but almost for the very first time. In fact there is an exploratory, almost tentative nature to his singing that is incredibly compelling, at times nigh heartbreaking." - Simon Thompson, MusicWeb International.

Lutosławski: Vocal works. Lucy Crowe; Christopher Purves; Toby Spence; BBC Symphony Orchestra/Edward Gardner [Chandos]
Britten: Serenade; Nocturne; Finzi: Dies Natalis. Mark Padmore; Britten Sinfonia/Jacqueline Shave [Harmonia Mundi]
Berlioz: Les nuits d'été; Herminie; Ravel: Shéhérazade. Véronique Gens; Orchestre National des Pays de la Loire/John Axelrod [Ondine]
Liszt: Lieder. Diana Damrau; Helmut Deutsch [Virgin]

Christian Gerhaher and Gerold Huber won this award in 2010 too, for their Mahler recital, and they were key contributors to "Terezin/Theresianstadt", 2007's winner. Edward Gardner's Lutosławski series makes a second appearance this year (see Orchestral).

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