Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 24°C

min temp: 15°C

Search
Norfolk Tourism Awards

Review: Schumann & Schubert; Pregardien & Drake; Snape Proms, August 17

PUBLISHED: 18:01 21 August 2017

Christoph Pregardien who performed with Julius Drake at the Snape Proms. Photo: Hans Morren

Christoph Pregardien who performed with Julius Drake at the Snape Proms. Photo: Hans Morren

Hans Morren © / Lid Dupho GKf, werkzaamheden en leveringen conform leveringsvoorwaarden Fotografenfederatie.

Quality was guaranteed in this recital with two of the greatest ever composers of lieder and one of today’s most celebrated performing partnerships of the genre.

Schumann’s song cycle ‘Dichterliebe’ was written in a matter of days during May 1840, a few months before his eventual marriage to Clara Wieck. The wedding was bitterly opposed by her father and the songs declare not only the composer’s intense love for his bride but cover darker emotions including lost love along with grudges and forgiveness.

The early settings are almost entirely optimistic; Julius Drake’s elegant accompaniment blended seamlessly with Christoph Pregardien’s beautifully balanced tenor voice to create a sense of unclouded ecstasy. Anger flares in Ich grolle nicht and both artists increased the tension but without unnecessary histrionics.

Drake’s unerring control of the spare writing in Hor’ ich das Liedchen produced a remarkable effect and the rapt attention given to his solo passage at the end of the cycle was tribute to his impeccable pianism. Pregardien’s strength of delivery and excellent diction enabled him to reach all corners of the hall without sense of strain.

The second half consisted of a variety of songs by Schubert from a number poetic sources including Friedrich Ruckert whose work also attracted the attention of Gustav Mahler. Schubert was certainly inspired to some striking effects - the hesitant, unresolved cadences at the opening of the first song, Dass sie hier gewesen, and the bleak, brooding opening of the second, Greisengesang. Du bist die Ruh, one of the composer’s best loved works found Pregardien in warm, ardent voice yet with an intimate intensity that affected everyone.

Every song had its innate beauties and each performance drew superb musicianship from the performers; Drake’s virtuosity in Im Walde and the acutely realised grave-digging in Totengrabers Heimweh for example. Pregardien floated effortlessly as a chink of light appeared to the gravedigger in the penultimate song and then found a deep and moving profundity in the final lines of Die Winterabend.

It was a memorable evening; rarely have I attended a concert with so little coughing and such sustained attention.

Gareth Jones

Comments have been disabled on this article.

A new supermarket chain is set to join Ransomes Europark in Ipswich, as a unit empty for seven years is finally getting a new lease of life.

Suffolk is being warned to expect high winds and a significant dip in temperatures as we near the weekend, marking the start of the real autumnal weather.

Tributes have been paid to Ipswich sports shop owner Malcolm Marriott, who has died after a lifetime of running shops in the heart of the town centre.

David Kindred takes a look at a previous Ipswich school, Martin Newbys in Fore Street, and Fisons works at Cliff Quay. Does this article bring back memories for you?

A long-running feud between a Suffolk council and residents’ group has reignited over claims of a “secretive” meeting and concerns over a £500,000 cemetery extension.

They claim the new attraction will blight their homes – and say they were not told about the plans when they bought the properties.

If a driver had been caught on a mobile phone while driving, it would be bad enough.

A man in his 20s has died and another person is in a life-threatening condition after a three vehicle crash on the A120 between Marks Tey and Coggeshall.

Police are appealing for help tracing a 32-year-old man from the Ipswich area.

CCTV images have been released after medicines and cosmetics were stolen during a burglary at Lloyds Pharmacy in Ipswich.

Most read

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Newsletter Sign Up

Ipswich Star daily newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

MyDate24 MyPhotos24