[ Sony Classical / CD ]
Release Date: Friday 11 October 2019
Jonas Kaufmann's tribute to the immortal melodies of the world's most beautiful cities.
Jonas Kaufmann's new album is a deeply personal tribute to the world-famous melodies from the birthplace of waltz and operetta. Hence its title: "Wien" - the German for "Vienna". None other than the Vienna Philharmonic is a more natural fit for such a recording of evergreen hits, with the varied programme conducted by Ádám Fischer. Soprano Rachel Willis-Sørensen joins on the duets, including the title melody of Wiener Blut.
Jonas Kaufmann has always had a special rapport with Austria and Vienna. His grandmother had a fondness for the light classics and was happy to sing the evergreens of Johann Strauss, Franz Lehár and Robert Stolz - a nice contrast to his grandfather's passion for Wagner. As a child, Jonas spent much of his free time on his grandparents' farm in Tyrol. Austrian television was almost more familiar to him than its German counterpart. In this way he absorbed the full breadth of Vienna's entertainment scene, from Peter Alexander to Georg Kreisler. He loved to imitate Hans Moser's Viennese twang and to slip into the role of "Herr Karl" (aka Helmut Qualtinger). Mastering Viennese dialect was child's play.
Since then he has had a deep love for Viennese songs and operetta. "The music always put me in a good mood", he recalls. "When I had unlikeable things to do as a student, like cleaning or vacuuming, all I had to do was play Carlos Kleiber's Fledermaus recording, and in no time at all I had a grin on my face."
"There is enough cream and sugar in his selection of golden and silver-age serenades by Johann Strauss II and Franz Lehár to satisfy the sweetest tooth. Yet in songs such as Georg Kreisler's satirical Der Tod, das muss ein Wiener sein, sung in a fair approximation of cabaret style by Kaufmann to Michael Rot's wry piano accompaniment and pointedly placed as an epilogue, there's a sharpness that interrogates wilful amnesia...The orchestral sound glistens like Cellophane" The Times
Benatzky: Ich muss wieder einmal in Grinzing sein
Kalman: Zwei Märchenaugen (from Die Zirkusprinzessin)
Kreisler, G: Der Tod muss ein Wiener sein
Kreuder: Sag zum Abschied leise Servus
Lehár: Lippen schweigen (from Die Lustige Witwe)
Leopoldi: In einem kleinen Café in Hernals
May, H: Es wird im Leben dir mehr genommen als gegeben
May, H: Heut ist der schönste Tag in meinem Leben
Siecynski: Wien, du Stadt meiner Traüm
Stolz, R: Im Prater bluh'n wieder die Baume, Op. 247
Stolz, R: Wien wird bei Nacht erst schön
Strauss, J, II: Ach, wie so herrlich zu schau'n (from Eine Nacht in Venedig)
Strauss, J, II: Dieser Anstand, so manierlich (from Die Fledermaus)
Strauss, J, II: Draußen im Sievering blüht schon der flieder (from Die Tänzerin Fanny Elssler)
Strauss, J, II: Eine Nacht in Venedig: Komm in die Gondel
Strauss, J, II: Sei mir gegrusst, du holdes Venezia! (from Eine Nacht in Venedig)
Strauss, J, II: Wiener Blut (from Wiener Blut)
Weinberger, J: Du wärst für mich die Frau gewesen
Zeller: Schenkt man sich Rosen in Tirol (from Der Vogelhändler)