Guide Regenlied - No. 3 from Eight Lieder and Songs Op. 59

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  1. Brahms: Regenlied (No. 3 from Acht Lieder und Gesänge, Op. 59) (page 1 of 2) | Presto Classical
  2. Sheet Music
  3. More by Johannes Brahms
  4. 8 Lieder and Songs, Op.59 (Brahms, Johannes)

In some respects this is all typical of the composer, but it is not quite typical in another—this is one of those songs after which listeners and performers are left feeling under a cloudless sky and glad to be alive. When oppressive summer heat Contended idly with cool freshness, And shiny leaves dripped with dew And crops turned a darker blue,. How blissful then it was to stand With naked feet in the flow!

Or to brush against the grass Or grasp the foam in both hands,. Or to catch the cold drops On my glowing cheeks, And to bare my boyish breast To fresh-awakened scents! Cascade, rain, cascade down, Wake in me those old songs That we sang in the doorway When outside the drops resounded!

Brahms: Regenlied (No. 3 from Acht Lieder und Gesänge, Op. 59) (page 1 of 2) | Presto Classical

The poem is divided into eight quatrains as printed above. The pianist must frequently cross hands, left over right, to play these notes in different registers of the instrument. The rain itself is represented by the rustling quavers that gently, self-effacingly and more or less ceaselessly, pulsate in the middle region of the keyboard. The comparison that comes to mind is French: The music gambols with all the energy and zest of boyhood. One is tempted to say that this is music suitable for an enthusiastic Ganymede in love with nature, although here he is a North German working-class boy rather than Trojan prince.

Undoubtedly the hardest part of the song to bring off, this music abandons ceaseless movement in favour of a kind of transfixed and ecstatic contemplation. Here Groth attempts to describe those moments that link memories of childhood, as reinterpreted by the nostalgic adult, with the secret meaning of being alive. The last page of the song is a beautiful coda—mention of innocent childlike awe softens the music into the radiance of F sharp major. There is no change of tempo in this gradual winding-down those rain-like quavers continue to pulsate in the accompaniment but the longer note values of the vocal line herald a conclusion both dreamlike and elegiac.

Sheet Music

When the sun shines again, The grass gleams twice as green: Twice as ardently on my cheeks My scalding tears will glow. In this way friends, and prospective friends, found themselves regularly tested.

8 Lieder und Gesange, Op. 59: No. 3. Regenlied

He could become massively offended if people and women especially , misread the signs—and this through no fault of their own, apart from being insufficiently practised at reading his mind. This tiny motif when repeated in various ways throughout the song, including two bars where the quavers ascend, encompasses a wistful reproach or a heartbroken plea, a smiling taunt and even a suggestive invitation. It is only human for a man to flirt and beseech, but he does not really mean to topple the beloved from her pedestal.

The affectionate peacefulness of the coda may assuage the pain of sexual frustration with a sigh of admiration, even relief, that she has passed the test.

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The listener is directed to track 23 for a folksong version of this nocturnal theme: Wie wenn ein Strahl durch schwere Wolken bricht, So winkest du ihm zu: Mein Pol, mein Stern bist du! As when a sunbeam pierces heavy cloud, So you beckon to my heart: You are my pole, you are my star! It is as if a wound were being dressed, rather too late for comfort, with a self-protective gauze of counterpoint.

Nevertheless, a master craftsman is clearly at work: The answer is that this is a perfect illustration of an essential Brahmsian paradox: The composer was heart-injured, seemingly as a child; the infinite extent of his pain and lack of self-esteem on a personal level was counterpointed by hard-won technical mastery in music with which no one else could compete.

More by Johannes Brahms

Self-abasement and professional grandiosity went hand in hand in a famously prickly personality. In building a cupola of technical wizardry around the raw and exposed vocal line of this song, Brahms somehow softens, if not neutralizes, the pain to which words and feelings such as these are attached.

Listening to music lightens the heart, but creating it can be a healing process—something Schubert also understood. His technical mastery, far from being the arid posturing condemned by Wolf, brings him, time and again, into the presence of the Muse who loves him unconditionally. If Mein wundes Herz verlangt were a covert, or even unconscious, An die Musik , it would be one of many instances when Brahms, master of self-concealment, requires us to read between the lines.

A pair of ardent eyes have burnt me, The pain of it still throbs: Your eyes are limpid as a lake, And like a lake as cool. For Brahms the poem, and thus the music, seems to have suggested a rather more circular enmeshment: These were women who were capable of causing him torment as well as being, in their gentler moments, the source of its cure. The stately motion initiated by a descending arpeggio for two bars in the accompaniment, followed by a sequence of another two bars, suggests something grand and miraculous, even portentous, as if there is a spell at work.

The vocal line in this short and powerful song is an exercise in inevitable descent; it has the telescoped intensity of an incantation. This is largely because the forte dynamic of the music discourages an intimate interpretation; it is as if the woman whose gaze has these healing powers is cast as something of a priestess or enchantress. If this is water music there is nothing here of the friendly, bubbling stream, rather more of the glassy undisturbed surface of a very deep and icy mountain lake.

For Brahms this lake is both cooling and cold, just as a glance from those blue eyes can both assuage his pain and icily reject him altogether.

There is certainly nothing very cosy about a beautiful Lorelei whose gaze ensures enslavement as well as a lifetime of suffering with no chance of escape. The postlude, exactly the same music as the prelude, suggests the static predicament of a helpless and willing victim. Update Required To play the media you will need to either update your browser to a recent version or update your Flash plugin. Don't show me this message again. Elly Ameling soprano , Rudolf Jansen piano. Angelika Kirchschlager mezzo-soprano , Graham Johnson piano.

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  • Now this indefatigable performer and scholar turns to the songs and vocal works of Brahms. Hyperion is delighted to present t Simon Bode tenor , Graham Johnson piano. For this third volume in Hyperion's Brahms Songs cycle, Graham Johnson is joined by the young German tenor Simon Bode in his debut recording for the label. Equally at home in the opera house and the recital hall, Bode's is a voice fusing control a Robert Holl bass-baritone , Graham Johnson piano. Volume 4 presents the bass-baritone Robert Holl, famed for his weighty interpretations of this repertoire.

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