Wolfgang Holzmair - The Philips Recitals

Wolfgang Holzmair - The Philips Recitals cover
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Wolfgang Holzmair - The Philips Recitals
Wolfgang Holzmair (baritone) Imogen Cooper, Gérard Wyss, Peter Stamm (piano) / San Francisco Symphony Orchestra

[ Decca Austrailian Eloquence / 13 CD Box Set ]

Release Date: Friday 11 March 2022

From Haydn to Eisler: the collected Philips recordings of WOLFGANG HOLZMAIR, a supreme art-song interpreter, including many long-deleted albums.

Wolfgang Holzmair has long been recognised as one of today's most accomplished and intelligent Lieder singers. He brings a refinement and subtlety to his performances worthy of the great German Lieder baritones, but it is the silky elegance of his voice that has always seduced listeners and critics: the golden, tenorial top as well as his rich, soulful lower register.

In celebration of his 70th birthday, this set brings together his complete Philips recitals for the first time, as well as his 1995 recording for Koch of the Hollywood Songbook by Hanns Eisler. The box is ordered by musical chronology, beginning with the folksong-like simplicity of Haydn's solo-vocal idiom, a quartet of exquisite Mozart Lieder and the Beethoven cycle - An die ferne Geliebte - that became the keystone for the Romantic artsong tradition.

Here and in the major cycles by Schubert and Schumann, Holzmair is partnered by Imogen Cooper, whose sensitivity to every turn of phrase and harmony places her in the pantheon of great Lieder pianists. Their partnership ranged beyond the acknowledged masterpieces of the tradition to include an imaginative recital of Eichendorff settings by Schumann, Hugo Wolf and Aribert Reimann, as well as a selection of Lieder by both Robert and Clara Schumann, including two songs - Rose, Meer und Sonner and Aus den Östlichen Rosen - which were not included on the original Philips album.

For his Philips albums of repertoire outside the central Austro-German Romantic tradition, Holzmair found sympathetic partners in Gérard Wyss and Maria Beloussova. These include two French albums and a pair of retrospectively tinted cycles by Ernst Krenek. In all cases, critics cherished Holzmair's conversational confidence of phrasing, and a poetic understanding capable of creating mounting subtle effects that can unify the disparate elements of a song cycle around a subtle evolution of mood.

This original covers set concludes with the German Requiem of Brahms, recorded in San Francisco with Herbert Blomstedt and widely praised as among the most lyrically affecting of modern versions. The booklet includes an appreciation of Holzmair's art by James Jolly and a memoir of their working partnership by Imogen Cooper.

"Singer and pianist work together almost by instinct in thinking themselves into the very heart of these songs... [Imogen Cooper's] playing throughout the programme is at once supportive of her partner and individual in itself. The recording is faultless" Gramophone Magazine

"Holzmair with his light, tenorish baritone proves a perfect poet in Dichterliebe and Imogen Cooper is an inspired accompanist....[In Liederkreis], too, Holzmair proves a masterly interpreter alert and intense but finely controlled....The sound throughout is impressive." Penguin Guide, 2010 edition ***

"It's the beauty of the voice itself that first grips the listener: a light baritone of moderate size and range, used with great skill and refinement. Within a relatively limited dynamic scale he displays a sensitive pointing of words and abundant coloristic variety." Stereo Review, September 1995 (Schwanengesang)

"His Dichterliebe strikes me as among the best ever recorded. Clearly Holzmair has a special affinity for Schumann. The very sound of his voice, his lightness of vocal touch, and what is clearly a deeply felt collaboration with Imogen Cooper all make for music-making of a surpassing naturalness, with not a wrong step along the way." Fanfare, January 1996 (Schumann)

"This exquisite recording of the principal song cycles of Robert Schumann, based upon poems of Heinrich Heine, is among [Holzmair's] best to date … captured with intimacy and warmth by the Philips engineers." Stereo Review, January 1996

"Holzmair's tone has a tenor-like lightness and he favours an undemonstrative manner … yet he seems to lose nothing of the chilling, numb bleakness of either music or text, and lmogen Cooper shows probing psychological acuity in her handling of the piano part … Highly recommended." Irish Times, June 1996 (Winterreise)

"A most beautiful legato … The beauty of Holzmair's singing is in a different category altogether … The work of the Trio Fontenay is a delight in itself." Gramophone, August 1998 (Beethoven)

"A program that is not only coherent but imaginative … Beethoven's invention of the song cycle remains a masterpiece, with Holzmair doing it justice in his own way. Cooper is once again the ideal partner." Fanfare, September 2000 (Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven)

"As ever, [Holzmair and Cooper] unified in musical thought, bring alert minds and alert musicality to everything from the relatively simple manner of Mendelssohn … to the etiolated yet complex world of Reimann … Clear, keenly balanced recording." Gramophone, February 2003 (Eichendorff Lieder)

"The program is traversed with great vocal skill and incisive word painting by Holzmair, and all the requisite keyboard colors and dramatic shifts are illuminated by Imogen Cooper … A winner on all counts." Fanfare, July 2003 (Eichendorff Lieder)

"This musical bouquet gives rare pleasure … There is something other-worldly about the reflective sostenuto that Holzmair preserves throughout." Fanfare, March 2019 (Chansons Françaises)

"Holzmair and Cooper present the cycles in a way that compels complete attention from first note to last." Oz Arts Review (Schubert)

"A first-rate recording … Holzmair sings them with such charm and commanding ease you just want to get out your score and sing along." Classics Today (Haydn/Mozart/Beethoven)

"That seductive tremor of vibrato which characterises Holzmair's hushed singing gives his performance true pathos." BBC Music Magazine (Die schöne Müllerin)


CD 1
1 Adelaïde, Op. 46

2 Das Veilchen
3 An Chloë
4 Das Traumbild
5 Die betrogene Welt

JOSEPH HAYDN (1732-1809)
6 Lob der Faulheit
7 Gegenliebe
8 Trost unglücklicher Liebe
9 Die zu späte Ankunft der Mutter

10 Kleine deutsche Kantate: Die ihr unermesslichen Weltalls Schöpfer ehrt

JOSEPH HAYDN (1732-1809)
11 O tuneful voice
12 Sailor's Song
13 Sympathy
14 The Spirit's Song
15 Fidelity
16 Content
17 Piercing Eyes
18 She never told her love

19-24 An die ferne Geliebte, Op. 98
Wolfgang Holzmair, baritone
Imogen Cooper, piano

CD 2

1 The sweetest lad was Jamie
2 Again, my Lyre
3 Waken Lords and Ladies gay
4 Oh! Who, my dear Dermot
5 The Elfin Fairies
6 Faithfu' Johnie
7 The Deserter
8 When mortals all to rest retire
9 Come fill, fill, my good fellow
10 The kiss, dear Maid, thy lip has left
11 When far from the home
12 Morning a cruel turmoiler is
13 Sunset
14 Oh! Sweet were the hours
15 Cupid's kindness
16 On the massacre of Glencoe
17 The Return to Ulster
18 The Pulse of an Irishman
19 The Parting Kiss
20 Good Night
Wolfgang Holzmair, baritone
Trio Fontenay

CD 3
FRANZ SCHUBERT (1797-1828)
1-20 Die schöne Müllerin, D.795
Wolfgang Holzmair, baritone
Imogen Cooper, piano

CD 4
FRANZ SCHUBERT (1797-1828)
1-24 Winterreise, D.911
Wolfgang Holzmair, baritone
Imogen Cooper, piano

CD 5
FRANZ SCHUBERT (1797-1828)
Schwanengesang, D.957
5 Seidl-Lieder
1 Die Taubenpost
2 Der Wanderer an den Mond, D.870
3 Sehnsucht, D.879
4 Irdisches Glück, D.866 No. 4
5 Widerspruch, D.865

9 Rellstab-Lieder
6 Lebensmut, D.937
7 Liebesbotschaft
8 Kriegers Ahnung
9 Frühlingssehnsucht
10 Ständchen
11 Aufenthalt
12 Herbst, D.945
13 In der Ferne
14 Abschied

6 Heine-Lieder
15 Der Atlas
16 Ihr Bild
17 Das Fischermädchen
18 Am Meer
19 Die Stadt
20 Der Doppelgänger

2 Seidl-Lieder
21 Die Taubenpost
22 Wiegenlied, D.867
Wolfgang Holzmair, baritone
Imogen Cooper, piano

CD 6
Lieder auf Gedichte von Heinrich Heine
1 Mein Wagen rollet langsam, Op. 142 No. 4
2 Der arme Peter, Op. 53 No. 3
3 Du bist wie eine Blume, Op. 25 No. 24
4 Tragödie, Op. 64 No. 3
5 Lehn deine Wang, Op. 142 No. 2
6 Was will die einsame Träne, Op. 25 No. 21
7 Die Lotosblume, Op. 25 No. 7

8-16 Liederkreis, Op. 24

17-32 Dichterliebe, Op. 48
Wolfgang Holzmair, baritone
Imogen Cooper, piano

CD 7
1-12 Zwölf Gedichte von Justinus Kerner, Op. 35
13 Widmung, Op. 25 No. 1

CLARA SCHUMANN (1819-1896)
14 Die stille Lotosblume, Op. 13 No. 6
15 O Lust, O Lust, Op. 23 No. 6

16 Der Himmel hat eine Träne geweint, Op. 37 No. 1

CLARA SCHUMANN (1819-1896)
17 Geheimes Flüstern hier und dort, Op. 23 No. 3

18 Freisinn, Op. 25 No. 2

CLARA SCHUMANN (1819-1896)
19 Sie liebten sich beide, Op. 13 No. 2

20 Venetianisches Lied I, Op. 25 No. 17
21 Venetianisches Lied II, Op. 25 No. 18
22 Der Nuβbaum, Op. 25 No. 3
23 Aus dem Schenkenbuch im Divan I, Op. 25 No. 5
24 Aus dem Schenkenbuch im Divan II, Op. 25 No. 6

CLARA SCHUMANN (1819-1896)
25 An einem lichten Morgen, Op. 23 No. 2

26 Ich hab' in mich gesogen, Op. 37 No. 5

CLARA SCHUMANN (1819-1896)
27 Liebeszauber, Op. 13 No. 3
28 Liebst du um Schönheit, Op. 12 No. 2

29 Aus den 'Östlichen Rosen', Op. 25 No. 25
30 Rose, Meer und Sonne, Op. 37 No. 9
31 Zum Schluss, Op. 25 No. 26
Wolfgang Holzmair, baritone
Imogen Cooper, piano

CD 8

1 Das Waldschloβ
2 Pagenlied, Op. posth.

ROBERT FRANZ (1815-1892)
3 Gute Nacht, Op. 5 No. 7
4 Jagdlied, Op. 1 No. 9

5 Nachtlied, Op. 71 No. 6
6 Wanderlied, Op. 57 No. 4

7-18 Liederkreis, Op. 39

19-23 Nachtstück

HUGO WOLF (1860-1903)
24-32 Gedichte von Joseph v. Eichendorff

33 Vor der Stadt

34 Nachtwanderer, Op. 9 No. 2

HANS PFITZNER (1869-1949)
35 Im Herbst, Op. 9 No. 3
36 Lockung, Op. 9 No. 4
37 Zum Abschied meiner Tochter

OTHMAR SCHOECK (1886-1957)
38 Nachruf 2'29
Wolfgang Holzmair, baritone
Imogen Cooper, piano

CD 9
ERNST KRENEK (1900-1991)
1-20 Reisebuch aus den österreichischen Alpen, Op. 62
21-27 Fiedellieder aus dem 'Liederbuch dreier Freunde', Op. 64
Wolfgang Holzmair, baritone
Gérard Wyss, piano

CD 10
HANNS EISLER (1898-1962)
1-32 Hollywood Songbook
Wolfgang Holzmair, baritone
Peter Stamm, piano

CD 11
GABRIEL FAURÉ (1845-1924)
1-2 Shylock, Op. 57 (excerpts)
3 Prison, Op. 83 No. 1
4 En sourdine, Op. 58 No. 2
5-7 Poème d'un jour, Op. 21
8-16 La Bonne Chanson, Op. 61
17-20 Mirages, Op. 113

HENRI DUPARC (1848-1933)
21 Sérénade 2'38
22 Chanson triste
23 Le manoir de Rosemonde
24 Soupir 3'11
25 Extase 3'15
26 L'invitation au voyage

MAURICE RAVEL (1875-1937)
27-31 Cinq Mélodies populaires grecques
Wolfgang Holzmair, baritone
Gérard Wyss, piano

CD 12

HECTOR BERLIOZ (1803-1869)
1-3 Les Nuits d'été, Op. 7, H.81 (excerpts)

4 Le Colibri, Op. 2 No. 7
5 Les Papillons, Op. 2 No. 3
6 Sérénade italienne, Op. 2 No. 5

JACQUES IBERT (1890-1962)
7 Chanson à Dulcinée

MAURICE RAVEL (1875-1937)
8-10 Don Quichotte à Dulcinée, M.84

JACQUES IBERT (1890-1962)
11 Chanson de la mort de Don Quichotte

CLAUDE DEBUSSY (1862-1918)
12-13 Deux Romances sur la poésie de Paul Bourget, L.79
14-16 Trois chansons de France, L.102

HENRI DUPARC (1848-1933)
17 Phidylé
18 Lamento
19 La vie antérieure

20-21 Deux melodies

GABRIEL FAURÉ (1845-1924)
22 Les berceaux, Op. 23 No. 1
23-26 L'Horizon chimérique, Op. 118
Wolfgang Holzmair, baritone
Maria Belooussova, piano

CD 13
1-7 Ein deutsches Requiem, Op. 45

Elizabeth Norberg-Schulz, soprano
Wolfgang Holzmair, baritone
San Francisco Symphony Chorus
San Francisco Symphony Orchestra
Herbert Blomstedt