ELEVEN ZIGEUNERLIEDER (GYPSY
SONGS) FOR VOCAL QUARTET, OP. 103 (Nos. 1-7, 11 also arranged
for solo voice and piano)
These pieces provided
Brahms and his circle of friends with unbridled enthusiasm and
enjoyment. Composed for pure pleasure in the wake of his
final orchestral composition, the Double Concerto, the songs combine
elements from some of his most popular and commercially
successful works. Like the two sets of Liebeslieder waltzes,
they are a sequence of shorter vocal quartet pieces in a single
meter with a unified text source. Like the Hungarian Dances,
they glorify and exalt the csárdás, the 2/4 dance type closely
associated with Liszt’s Hungarian Rhapsodies. The Viennese
businessman Hugo Conrat had employed a Hungarian-born nanny,
Fräulein Witzel, who translated 25 Hungarian folk song texts
into German. Conrat worked these into rhymed verse, and
they were published in 1887 with the original folk melodies,
given piano accompaniments by Zoltán Nagy. Conrat shared
the texts with the composer of the ubiquitously popular Hungarian Dances,
who eagerly went to work after his own brief winter holiday in
Budapest, selecting eleven to set as vocal quartets with piano
and calling them Zigeunerlieder (Gypsy Songs).
For Brahms and others of the time, “Hungarian” and “Gypsy” were
virtually interchangeable. An informal performance was
arranged with Fräulein Witzel in attendance. The settings
are all very short, and a complete performance lasts about 16
minutes. Most of them are in a hybrid strophic binary form
with some internal repetition. All of them are in 2/4
time, but the tempo and texture are varied. The
introductory melodic presentation is often given to a solo voice
(the tenor in most instances). Brahms did not refer
directly to the original folk melodies (unlike the Hungarian Dances,
which he considered “arrangements” and published without opus
number), but there is a sense of “ethnic authenticity.”
There are irregular phrase lengths, major/minor alterations
(only the first two begin and end in minor), and even an
imitation of the Hungarian cimbalom in No. 10. References
to other instruments, such as the zither, concertina, or “gypsy”
violin are also present. Friends such as Clara Schumann,
Elisabeth von Herzogenberg, and Theodor Billroth were utterly
delighted by the Zigeunerlieder, and the correspondence
regarding them is unusually large. Brahms himself referred
to them as “excessively jolly stuff.” The correspondence
of the long-short rhythm in Nos. 1 and 11 is obviously meant to
tie the set together. The piano parts are challenging but
generally manageable. Their popularity led to the
composition of four more Zigeunerlieder that were
included in the set of six quartets, Op. 112. There was also demand
for solo voice arrangements, which Brahms provided for the first
seven and the last. Nos. 8-10, which contain more
counterpoint, imitation, and antiphonal writing, were not
suitable for such arrangements. The existence of these
solo versions is somewhat unfortunate, as the quartet writing is
so exhilarating. In 1983, when the first “complete” Brahms
recording project was undertaken by Deutsche Grammophon, the
solo versions led the producers to only include Nos. 8-10 in
quartet recordings, an utterly inexcusable choice.
Recordings existed with small choirs (a valid alternative
approved by Brahms), but a true quartet recording of the full
set was unavailable until 2017. The solo versions were
published in high and low keys, the low keys a major or minor
third lower than the original quartet. The “high” keys
match the original except for No. 7, which is a half-step
higher. A much later “middle key” edition was published by
Peters, consistently a whole step below the high key. The
solo voice generally takes the soprano line (or the tenor line
when that voice has a solo passage in the quartet), and the
piano parts are mostly unchanged. The biggest change is at
the end of No. 1, which omits a powerful cadence figure and
culminating final statement to close quietly.
Recording: Juliane Banse, soprano; Ingeborg Danz, mezzo-soprano;
Christoph Prégardien, tenor; Andreas Schmidt, baritone; Helmut
Deutsch, piano [CPO 777 537-2]
Recording of Solo Version: Jessye Norman, soprano; Daniel
Barenboim, piano [DG 449 633-2]
Published 1888. Solo version
Note: Links to English translations of the texts are from Emily
Ezust’s site at http://www.lieder.net.
the translations are line-by-line, except where the difference
between German and English syntax requires slight alterations to
the contents of certain lines. The German texts (included
here) are also visible in the translation links.
All texts translated from the Hungarian by Hugo Conrat.
Guides to solo versions based on quartet guides.
IMSLP WORK PAGE
SCORE FROM IMSLP (First Edition from Brahms-Institut
Lübeck--includes quartet version and [oddly but fortuitously]
the LOW key solo edition)
SCORE FROM IMSLP (Quartet version from Breitkopf & Härtel Sämtliche Werke)
SCORE FROM IMSLP (Solo version from Breitkopf & Härtel
Sämtliche Werke--high/original keys)
1. “He, Zigeuner, greife in die Saiten ein!” (“Hey, Gypsy, pluck
your strings!”). Allegro agitato - Più Presto. Rounded
binary form with recapitulatory coda (AA’BB’A’’B’’). A
MINOR, 2/4 time.
He, Zigeuner, greife in die Saiten ein!
Spiel das Lied vom ungetreuen Mägdelein!
Laß die Saiten weinen, klagen, traurig bange,
Bis die heiße Träne netzet diese Wange!
0:00 [m. 1]--Lines 1-2 (A). The piano
forcefully drums a two-measure opening with a clipped
inward-moving figure of two sixteenth notes on the first half of
the beat and a rest on the second half, moving lower in the second
measure. When the tenor alone enters with the first two
lines, this clipped motion continues in the left hand with static
octaves on A under the first phrase and more motion of the octaves
under the second. The right hand has undulating triplets in
harmony against it, sotto voce ma agitato. The first
six-bar vocal phrase soars up, then works down in long-short
rhythm, staying on A minor. The second phrase is highly
disjunct, including a huge upward leap of a ninth that works down
to the “dominant” on E.
0:13 [m. 15]--Lines 1-2 repeated (A’). All
four voices now repeat the lines in full harmony, the melody in
the soprano. The piano’s undulating triplets are slightly
altered to shadow the tenor melody. In the second line,
there is rhythmic variation between the voices, with straight
quarter-note motion placed against long-short rhythms, either in
the harmony or the melody. The volume swells toward the huge
0:21 [m. 27]--Lines 3-4 (B). The tenor now
presents these two lines with the same piano figuration. The
third line is sung to a new melody that begins in A major and
still exploits the long-short rhythm, moving down then up, with
expressive downward-leaning “appoggiatura” motion on “weinen,
klagen.” The word “bange” is stretched out, the first
syllable held over a bar line before moving, expanding the phrase
to eight measures, moving to the “dominant.” The fourth line
closely resembles the first line from A, creating a
“rounded binary” effect. It closes on A harmony, vacillating
between minor and major. This time the vocal phrase is
stretched to seven measures, and the piano continues its
undulation for an eighth.
0:36 [m. 43]--Lines 3-4 repeated (B’). The
voices again repeat the lines in harmony. This time the
piano is unchanged from the tenor’s presentation. Again,
there is contrasting motion, straight quarter notes against
long-short rhythms, and the alto even has some upward leaps in
eighth notes. The extended word “bange” creates an
opportunity for highly expressive internal motion, syncopation,
and asynchronous text. After the second phrase concludes,
including the piano’s extension, the triplet figuration suddenly
stops, and a forceful two-measure cadence gesture emphatically
asserts A minor, leading into the recapitulatory coda.
0:51 [m. 61]--Coda, lines 1-2 (A”). Più
presto. Now faster and at full volume, the first two lines
are sung again in harmony. The soprano is obviously the same
as before, but there is some exchange and variation in the alto
and tenor parts, and some shifting of register in the bass.
The piano figuration is changed to an even more exciting
pattern. The “clipped” figures are removed from the bass,
and the undulating triplets are now passed between the hands, with
the triplets usually starting in one hand and finishing in
another, the right hand “resetting” things at the bar lines while
the left reaches down for low bass punctuation.
1:01 [m. 73]--Coda, lines 3-4 (B”). In the
recapitulatory statement of these lines, there is less variation
and exchange of the parts, and it is completely absent from the
point of the extended “bange” on. The piano figuration
reverts to its previous pattern under “bange,” but then changes
back to the triplets passed between the hands. In the last
three vocal measures, the pattern changes to the descending right
hand following rising octaves from the left hand.
1:12 [m. 87]--At the vocal cadence, the piano reverts to
its previous undulating patterns, and the extension is stretched
to three measures, quieting rapidly over a shift from major to
minor, then yielding to the suddenly forceful cadence gesture,
which is expanded to three measures by the concluding arrival
1:22--END OF SONG [93 mm.]
SOLO VERSION (A minor, Low key F minor)
0:00 [m. 1]--Lines 1-2 (A). The piano opening
is as in the quartet version. The solo voice sings the
original solo tenor line. The sotto voce ma agitato
triplets in the right hand are mostly as in the quartet version,
with very minor alterations.
0:12 [m. 15]--Lines 1-2 repeated (A’). The
solo voice takes the original soprano line. Because all four
voices entered here in the quartet version, Brahms varies the
accompaniment to provide variety in the solo version. The
triplets had shadowed the tenor line, which here is not
present. Now they follow the main vocal line, and they are
also placed in a lower octave, in the tenor register. In the
second line, the right-hand triplets return to their original
level from the quartet version.
0:21 [m. 27]--Lines 3-4 (B). The solo voice
sings the original solo tenor line, and the piano accompaniment is
as in the quartet version.
0:34 [m. 27]--Lines 3-4 repeated (B). Here
there is a simple repeat sign where the four voices had entered in
harmony. The forceful cadence gesture is completely omitted,
as is the entire recapitulatory coda.
0:47 [m. 43]--Instead of the dramatic cadence gesture from
the quartet, here the piano undulation simply continues, shifting
from major to minor and becoming quieter (as at the end of the
quartet). After two measures, the triplets stop, and the
piano simply closes pianissimo with a low open third and
two open fourths over a bass A. The distinctive, memorable
cadence gesture is not heard at all in the solo version.
0:58--END OF SONG [47 mm.]
2. “Hochgetürmte Rimaflut” (“High-towering River Rima”).
Allegro molto. Rounded binary form. D MINOR, 2/4
Wie bist du so trüb;
An dem Ufer klag ich
Laut nach dir, mein Lieb!
Wellen fliehen, Wellen strömen,
Rauschen an dem Strand heran zu mir.
An dem Rimaufer laß mich
Ewig weinen nach ihr!
0:00 [m. 1]--Part 1. Stanza 1, lines 1-2. The
voices begin in forceful unison, presenting a distinctive main
gesture with a long-short downward turn and a descending octave
leap. The piano shadows this, with the right hand
following the left off the beat, harmonizing the first
note. The voices then break into harmony, the soprano and
alto gliding down in thirds with the long-short rhythm, the
tenor leaping up and back down, and the bass punctuating in
straight rhythm. The piano has harmonized downward-leaping
figures in the left hand, with the right hand shadowing the
melodic motion off the beat. The “dominant” arrival is
decorated with a “weeping” grace note in the upper voices and in
the piano’s phrase-completing extension.
0:07 [m. 9]--Lines 3-4. The answering phrase begins
with the same opening gesture, but in the harmonized
continuation, the soprano and alto begin their descent a step
higher, the harmony turning to the “relative” F major. The
tenor and bass both have arching motion in straight
rhythm. The voices, with another “sobbing” soprano grace
note, complete a full D-minor cadence, but this is undermined by
the piano. While bass octaves in the left hand support the
cadence, the off-beat right hand harmonies under the vocal
cadence and in the extension (with grace note) divert toward G
minor and a “plagal” approach to the repeat.
0:14 [m. 1]--Part 1 repeated. Stanza 1, lines 1-2
as at the beginning.
0:20 [m. 9]--Lines 3-4, as at 0:07.
0:26 [m. 17]--Part 2. Stanza 2, lines 1-2.
For the ten-bar contrasting phrase, the voices lower their
volume and steadily build in fully harmonized “waves,” surging
up three times in succession. The bass and piano left hand
preserve the opening gesture through the first two of these
“waves.” The right hand continues to play off the beat,
now alternating between “diminished seventh” and “dominant
seventh” harmonies, lending a sense of instability. When
the climax is reached with the top of the third “wave” in the
middle of the second line, the voices plunge down. The
tenor reaches a high B-flat and the bass has leaping
octaves. The piano abandons the off-beat patterns,
harmonizing and extending the descent and “dominant” arrival.
0:35 [m. 27]--Lines 3-4. The closing phrase is a
variant of the second phrase from Part 1. The opening
gesture returns, but it is extended by a measure, with the
soprano and bass twice singing the initial downward turn.
The alto and tenor diverge from the original unison, singing
long notes to the words “an dem Ufer,” removing the name of the
river “Rima.” The descent begins yet another step higher
with new harmonization (and a weaker emphasis on F major), but
it soon returns to the original level from the end of Part 1,
with the descent to the D-minor cadence, complete with “sobbing”
grace note. The piano, with its bass octaves doubling the
vocal bass, now fully supports the cadence, trailing down in the
0:43 [m. 17]--Part 2 repeated. Stanza 2, lines 1-2,
as at 0:26.
0:52 [m. 27]--Lines 3-4, as at 0:35. The nine-bar
phrase is extended by a final held chord in the piano, the right
hand following the left’s low bass note in the middle range, and
inflecting the chord to major.
1:06--END OF SONG [37 mm.]
SOLO VERSION (D minor, Low key B-flat minor)
0:01 [m. 1]--Part 1. Stanza 1, lines 1-2. The
solo voice sings the original soprano line, and the piano part
is as in the quartet version. The “weeping” grace note is
retained in the voice and piano.
0:09 [m. 9]--Lines 3-4. In the answering phrase,
Brahms indicates an option for the voice to leap up and sing an
octave higher on the last three measures of the descent (“dir,
mein Lieb!”), including the grace note. The original full
descent is preferred. He also places a very small
deviation in the piano part on the first of these measures,
adding an upper octave note to the right hand.
0:16 [m. 1]--Part 1 repeated. Stanza 1, lines 1-2.
0:24 [m. 9]--Lines 3-4, as at 0:09.
0:31 [m. 17]--Part 2. Stanza 2, lines 1-2. In
the contrasting phrase, there are no changes in the piano
part. The solo voice follows the original soprano through
the climax up to the held note on “mir.” At that point,
the voice switches to the original tenor note (up to held note
on E instead of down to B-natural), resulting in a more dramatic
downward leap (to A) than the original stepwise descent of the
quartet soprano line. The lowering of volume at the
beginning of the phrase is also marked piano instead of
simply mezzo forte.
0:41 [m. 27]--Lines 3-4. For the closing phrase,
the voice follows the original soprano line, with the option
again of leaping to the higher octave on the last three measures
of the descent (“weinen nach ihr!”). The piano again adds
the upper octave note to the right hand at the same point as in
the second phrase of Part 1. The grace notes in the voice
and piano are omitted here, and the notes of the last long-short
rhythm in the penultimate vocal measure (m. 33) are straightened
out, as they were in all voices except the soprano.
0:50 [m. 17]--Part 2 repeated. Stanza 2, lines 1-2,
as at 0:31.
1:00 [m. 27]--Lines 3-4, as at 0:41. The extension
with the final chord inflected to major is unchanged.
1:17--END OF SONG [37 mm.]
3. “Wißt ihr, wann mein Kindchen am allerschönsten ist?” (“Do
you know when my beloved is the fairest?”). Allegretto -
Allegro. Strophic form with repeated “choral”
refrain. D MAJOR, 2/4 time.
Wißt ihr, wann mein Kindchen am allerschönsten ist?
Wenn ihr süßes Mündchen scherzt und lacht und küßt.
Mägdelein, du bist mein, inniglich küß ich dich,
Dich erschuf der liebe Himmel einzig nur für mich!
Wißt ihr, wann mein Liebster am besten mir gefällt?
Wenn in seinen Armen er mich umschlungen hält.
Schätzelein, du bist mein, inniglich küß ich dich,
Dich erschuf der liebe Himmel einzig nur für mich!
(NB: The measure numbering here follows the Breitkopf &
Härtel Sämtliche Werke, with both verses written
out. Other editions are notated like the solo version,
with a Da capo following the interlude and with the
words for the first and second verses under the tenor and
soprano, respectively, of the Allegretto.)
0:00 [m. 1]--Stanza (strophe) 1. Lines 1-2.
Each verse opens with an “Allegretto” section for solo
voice. In the first verse, that is the tenor. The
melody lightly skips along, with the piano right hand playing
short marching staccato harmonies. The piano bass
comically imitates the voice twice under the first,
“questioning” line. The right-hand harmonies are smoother
under the “answering” second line and marked dolce.
This time, the imitation is in high octaves as the harmonies are
passed to the left hand. After the singer finishes the
“answer” with a full close, the piano reiterates it and extends
the phrase a ninth measure.
0:13 [m. 10]--Lines 3-4 (refrain). These lines,
mostly the same in both verses, are treated as a refrain, sung forte
by the full quartet. The tempo speeds up to Allegro.
Line 3 is sung in joyous harmonies to anapestic
(short-short-long) rhythms. The piano right hand doubles
the soprano and alto, while the left hand erupts into fast
sixteenth-note arpeggios. Line 4 treats the voices in
pairs and is two bars longer. The soprano and alto begin,
surging upward to a climax in long-short rhythms. The
tenor and bass follow a beat later and omit the words “liebe”
and “einzig.” The piano’s figures are directed
upward. The voices cadence in the fifth measure, and the
piano completes the phrase with broken bass octaves and a
bubbling right hand.
0:23 [m. 10]--Lines 3-4 (refrain) repeated. The men
sing “Mägdelein” and the women “Schätzelein” on all statements
of the refrain, combining the one difference between the verses.
0:33 [m. 20]--Interlude. The piano suddenly arrests
its motion and quiets down after the repeat. The right
hand descends in slower thirds while the left hand has a
short-long upward half-step gesture. The thirds then slow
down even more, adding a tender chromatic motion, and the left
hand has another short-long gesture. The piano breaks off
expectantly, allowing a measure of rest before the return of the
Allegretto for the second verse.
0:38 [m. 24]--Stanza (strophe) 2. Lines 1-2.
The soprano now has the “Allegretto” lines, turning from the
feminized “Kindchen” of the tenor’s verse to the distinctly
masculine “Liebster,” each lover having a turn to express the
tender feelings about the other. One note is added for the
0:51 [m. 33]--Lines 3-4 (refrain). Text and music
as at 0:13 and 0:23 [m. 10].
1:00 [m. 33]--Lines 3-4 (refrain) repeated. Two
measures of punctuating chords are added as a closing in place
of the sudden slow-down of the interlude. In editions
where both verses are not written out, these measures are
treated as a “second” ending and the interlude as a “first”
ending, albeit (confusingly) after the repeat sign for the
1:17--END OF SONG [44 mm.]
SOLO VERSION (D major, Low key B-flat major)
0:01 [m. 1]--Stanza (strophe) 1. Lines 1-2.
The piano part has no deviation from the quartet version, and
the voice follows the soprano line in the refrains. The
two verses are not fully written out, however. The singer
presents the original tenor statement of the “Allegretto,” and
since this was originally a solo passage, it is completely
0:15 [m. 10]--Lines 3-4 (refrain). Curiously,
because of the dialogue nature of the text, Brahms indicates an
optional second voice for the “Allegro” refrain, making it a
duet. The second voice (not used in this recording) is the
original alto line (with an exception on the penultimate note,
where it uses the tenor’s note). For the first verse, as
in the original text, the word “Mägdelein” is used.
0:24 [m. 10]--Lines 3-4 (refrain) repeated.
0:32 [m. 20a]--Interlude, here notated as a “first
ending” of four measures after the repeat and with Da capo
indicating a return to the opening for the second verse.
0:37 [m. 1]--Stanza (strophe) 2. Lines 1-2.
The singer presents the “Allegretto” with the words of the
original soprano statement. Again, one note is added to
accommodate the word “er.”
0:52 [m. 10]--Lines 3-4 (refrain). The word
“Schätzelein” is now used.
1:00 [m. 10]--Lines 3-4 (refrain) repeated. The
punctuating chords are a “second ending,” but one that is two
measures shorter than the “first ending” of the interlude.
1:15--END OF SONG [23 mm. (21 mm. Stanza 2)]
4. “Lieber Gott, du weißt, wie oft bereut ich hab” (“Dear God,
you know how often I’ve been sorry”). Vivace
grazioso. Strophic form with repeated “choral”
refrain. F MAJOR, 2/4 time.
German Text :
Lieber Gott, du weißt, wie oft bereut ich hab,
Daß ich meinem Liebsten einst ein Küßchen gab.
Herz gebot, daß ich ihn küssen muß,
Denk, solang ich leb, an diesen ersten Kuß.
Lieber Gott, du weißt, wie oft in stiller Nacht
Ich in Lust und Leid an meinen Schatz gedacht.
Lieb ist süß, wenn bitter auch die Reu,
Armes Herze bleibt ihm ewig, ewig treu.
(NB: The measure numbering here follows the Breitkopf &
Härtel Sämtliche Werke, with the repetition of the
refrain written out.)
0:00 [m. 1]--Stanza (strophe) 1. Lines 1-2.
The soprano sings these playful lines as a solo. The first
line skips up and back down. The main interest is in the
piano, which decorates some vocal doubling with a constantly
moving inner voice. This inner voice is a series of
rippling descents that pass to the left hand. After the
first line arrives on C (the “dominant”), the piano’s upper
melodic line slides up by half-step for the second line, which
is very similar. The primary difference is the harmony
halfway through, which emphasizes the area of A minor. The
ending of the vocal line makes an upward turn instead of the
previous downward one, and the “transitional” piano harmony
returns to the “dominant” with a stronger pull.
0:11 [m. 9]--Lines 3-4 (refrain). The rest of the
quartet joins in full harmony. After line 3 begins at full
volume, it quiets down after “Herz gebot” with gently detached
notes. The tenor and bass have slower motion and omit the
words “daß ich.” The piano has upward-reaching arpeggios
with rolled left hand chords under the loud opening, then thins
to gentle ripples, shadowing the melody with harmonic thirds,
under the quieter portion. The line ends on the “dominant”
harmony. Line 4 is similar, beginning loud (but with
faster notes) and then quieting down, this time reaching a full
close. The slower tenor and bass cut out the word
“ersten.” The piano trails the vocal cadence leading into
the full repetition of the two lines.
0:21 [m. 17]--Lines 3-4 (refrain) repeated. After
the conclusion, the piano trails down again, then continues for
a measure, cutting off abruptly on a “dominant” chord. A
full measure rest serves as a “first ending,” the pause
preparing for the second verse.
0:33 [m. 1]--Stanza (strophe) 2. Lines 1-2.
As in the first verse, they are presented by the soprano.
0:43 [m. 9]--Lines 3-4 (refrain). With the new
text, the slower tenor and bass omit the words “auch die” in
line 3 and the repetition of “ewig” in line 4.
0:53 [m. 17]--Lines 3-4 (refrain) repeated. The
“first ending” pause is replaced by a forceful concluding chord
as a “second ending,” resolving the “dominant” chord that had
cut off abruptly before the pause.
1:09--END OF SONG [26 mm.]
SOLO VERSION (F major, Low key D major)
0:00 [m. 1]--Stanza (strophe) 1. Lines 1-2.
The solo voice sings the line that was already sung as a solo by
the soprano in the quartet version. The piano part is
0:11 [m. 9]--Lines 3-4 (refrain). The solo voice
sings the soprano line from the quartet, removing the “detached”
character of the “quieter” notes. The piano part remains
0:20 [m. 17]--Lines 3-4 (refrain) repeated. As in
the quartet version, the piano trails down and cuts off after
the “dominant” chord before a full measure pause.
0:33 [m. 1]--Stanza (strophe) 2. Lines 1-2.
0:43 [m. 9]--Lines 3-4 (refrain).
0:52 [m. 17]--Lines 3-4 (refrain) repeated, with forceful
1:09--END OF SONG [26 mm.]
5. “Brauner Bursche führt zum Tanze” (“A swarthy young man leads
to the dance”). Allegro giocoso. Four-phrase
strophic form, with entire text repeated. D MAJOR, 2/4
Brauner Bursche führt zum Tanze
Sein blauäugig schönes Kind;
Schlägt die Sporen keck zusammen,
Küßt und herzt sein süßes Täubchen,
Dreht sie, führt sie, jauchzt und springt;
Wirft drei blanke Silbergulden
Auf das Zimbal, daß es klingt.
0:00 [m. 1]--First statement. Introduction.
It is short but dramatic. The right hand begins with a
syncopated third on an eighth note upbeat held over the
bar. On the downbeat, the left hand plays a quick
arpeggio. The right hand continues with a downward-arching
rhetorical gesture in sixth and thirds. Two detached
chords, the second on the “dominant,” precede an expectant fermata.
0:04 [m. 3]--Lines 1-2. Each phrase has six
measures. In all but the third, the last two are an
instrumental bridge. Here, the voices enter together in
forceful block harmonies. The first three measures all
begin with a long-short rhythm. The melodic line arches up
twice. Under the voices, the piano’s figures are
distinctive. After a rapid upward arpeggio from the left
hand using a fast triplet rhythm, the right hand follows with
harmonized downward-arching figures in slower triplet
rhythm. The fourth measure has straighter rhythms.
After the voices break off, the interlude combines elements of
the introduction--the syncopated opening in thirds and the
straight left-hand arpeggio--with the right-hand triplet
0:12 [m. 9]--Lines 3-4. The second phrase is
similar in rhythm and contour, with a longer upward
motion. It touches on the “relative” minor (B minor)
before closing in the “dominant” A major. This time the
interlude dispenses with the triplet figures and approximately
echoes the close of the vocal phrase harmonized in thirds, still
beginning with the syncopation.
0:20 [m. 15]--Lines 5-6. This phrase deviates from
the pattern. With a sudden piano, line 5 is sung
in the first two measures, which alter the rhythm by placing the
long-short rhythm at the end of the measure. There are now
two short arching figures, which the piano right hand follows
more directly. The triplets are dispensed with in both
hands. The next two measures stretch out the first half of
line six, with leaping gestures in slower quarter notes, still
in block harmonies. The piano continues its pattern,
playing its own arching figures in the new rhythm. These
measures have a strong crescendo. Finally, the
line is completed with forte block chords in voice and
piano leading to a fermata on the “dominant” and no
0:28 [m. 21]--Lines 7-8. The original rhythm and
patterns return for the last phrase, including the triplet
figures in the piano and the long-short rhythm at the beginning
of the measure. The first two measures have a downward
trajectory in the soprano with more arching motion in the lower
voices. In the last two, there is another upward sweep
before the satisfying cadence with leaping piano bass
octaves. This time the interlude merges with the
introduction, easily facilitated by the expected syncopation in
the right hand. The left-hand arpeggio is wider, using
fast triplets. After the first measure (m. 25), there is a
repeat sign leading back to the second measure of the
introduction, the detached chords leading to the fermata.
0:38 [m. 3]--Second statement. Lines 1-2, as at
0:46 [m. 9]--Lines 3-4, as at 0:12.
0:54 [m. 15]--Lines 5-6, as at 0:20.
1:02 [m. 21]--Lines 7-8, as at 0:28. This time the
measure with the detached chords is written out as m. 26, and
there is no fermata or pause. Instead, a final
measure and chord are added to complete the cadence.
1:15--END OF SONG [27 mm.]
SOLO VERSION (D major, Low key B major)
0:00 [m. 1]--First statement. Introduction, as in
the quartet version.
0:05 [m. 3]--Lines 1-2. The solo voice sings the
original soprano line throughout. In this phrase, there
are no changes to the accompaniment other than it being marked piano
before the interlude.
0:13 [m. 9]--Lines 3-4. There is a slight thinning
of the harmony in the right-hand triplet in the third measure
0:21 [m.15]--Lines 5-6. There is a slight change to
the right-hand harmony in the second measure (m. 16) to remove
two notes that had doubled the (now absent) alto voice.
The singer here adds a slight slowing.
0:30 [m. 21]--Lines 7-8. The piano adds a
right-hand harmony on the first beat of the third measure (m.
23) and adjusts the orientation of the notes in the right-hand
triplet of that measure to better fit the solo voice. As
in the quartet version, the interlude merges with the
introduction with a repeat from m. 25 back to m. 2.
0:38 [m. 3]--Second statement. Lines 1-2, as at
0:47 [m. 9]--Lines 3-4, as at 0:13.
0:55 [m. 15]--Lines 5-6, as at 0:21. The singer
here slides up to the high note at the beginning of the last
phrase. The soprano in the quartet version also did this
to add variety to the second statement.
1:05 [m. 21]--Lines 7-8, as at 0:30. As in the
quartet version, the second measure of the interlude is written
out, there is no fermata, and a final measure is added
to complete the cadence.
1:17--END OF SONG [27 mm.]
6. ““Röslein dreie in der Reihe blühn so rot” (“Three little
roses in a row, blossoming so red”). Vivace
grazioso. Binary strophic form with repeated “choral”
refrain. G MAJOR, 2/4 time.
Röslein dreie in der Reihe blühn so rot,
Daß der Bursch zum Mädel gehe, ist kein Verbot!
Lieber Gott, wenn das verboten wär,
Ständ die schöne weite Welt schon längst nicht mehr;
Ledig bleiben Sünde wär!
Schönstes Städtchen in Alföld ist Ketschkemet,
Dort gibt es gar viele Mädchen schmuck und nett!
Freunde, sucht euch dort ein Bräutchen aus,
Freit um ihre Hand und gründet euer Haus,
Freudenbecher leeret aus.
0:00 [m. 1]--Stanza (strophe) 1. Lines 1-2.
There is a very short two-bar introduction, two quiet right-hand
harmonies that suggest E minor instead of G major. The
tenor alone sings the first two lines to a jaunty, leaping
melody. The piano is also light and detached, alternating
left- and right-hand harmonies. In each line, the final
notes are stretched out by detached pauses. The first line
is in pure G major, but the second strongly hints at B minor
before closing on G.
0:10 [m. 11]--Lines 1-2 are sung by the top three voices
in harmony without the bass, the soprano taking over the melody
from the tenor. The melody is unchanged except at the very
end when it turns up instead of down to accommodate a motion to
the “dominant” harmony after the material hinting at B
minor. The piano adds a delightful new element, right-hand
arpeggios that rapidly ripple down at the end of each line.
0:17 [m. 19]--Lines 3-5 (refrain). With a surge in
volume, the voices, including the bass, joyously sing line 3
with a broad downward sweep. The piano, emerging out of
the last rippling arpeggio, continues with more arpeggios,
ascending off the beat, for this line over solid bass
octaves. Line 4 suddenly returns to the quiet volume and
detached character of the first two lines, the bass punctuating
more slowly and omitting the words “weite” and “längst.”
The line is highly chromatic, with a prominent minor-key tinge
lent by the note E-flat. The short last line returns to
the broad surge of line 3, its brevity allowing for even more
broadening. The piano bass has broken octaves and the
cadence is marked by punctuating chords.
0:27 [m. 19]--Lines 3-5 (refrain) repeated.
0:37 [m. 31]--The piano has a brief but powerful postlude
that echoes line 5, placing the melody a third higher.
Right-hand chords are played over broken octave figures (with
the upper note harmonized) in the left hand. The postlude
suddenly breaks off, aborting the cadence with a pause (m. 34a)
that serves as a “first ending” before the da capo
return for the second stanza.
0:41 [m. 1]--Stanza (strophe) 2. Lines 1-2.
The short introduction is repeated before the tenor sings the
first two lines of the second stanza (about the little town of
Ketschkemet) to the same music as before.
0:51 [m. 11]--Lines 1-2 sung by the top three voices with
rippling piano arpeggios, as in stanza 1.
0:58 [m. 19]--Lines 3-5 (refrain) with new text.
1:09 [m. 19]--Lines 3-5 (refrain) repeated.
1:19 [m. 31]--Piano postlude, now with the cadence
completed on a satisfying G-major chord (m. 34b).
1:26--END OF SONG [34 mm.]
SOLO VERSION (G major, Low key E-flat major)
0:00 [m. 1]--Stanza (strophe) 1. Lines 1-2.
The solo voice sings the original solo tenor line. The
piano part is unaltered from the quartet version throughout the
song, including the tiny “E-minor” introduction.
0:14 [m. 11]--The solo voice now takes the soprano
line. The lack of variety presented by the absence of the
lower parts is compensated by the rippling piano arpeggios.
0:23 [m. 19]--Lines 3-5 (refrain), with solo voice on the
original soprano part.
0:35 [m. 19]--Lines 3-5 (refrain) repeated.
0:47 [m. 31]--Piano postlude, with “first ending” pause
breaking off the cadence.
0:52 [m. 1]--Stanza (strophe) 2. Lines 1-2 with
1:05 [m. 11]--Repetition of lines 1-2 with rippling piano
1:13 [m. 19]--Lines 3-5 (refrain) with new text.
1:25 [m. 19]--Lines 3-5 (refrain) repeated.
1:36 [m. 31]--Piano postlude with closing chord.
1:44--END OF SONG [34 mm.]
7. “Kommt dir manchmal in den Sinn, mein süßes Lieb” (“Do you
sometimes remember, my sweet love”). Andantino
grazioso. Binary form. E-FLAT MAJOR, 2/4 time.
Kommt dir manchmal in den Sinn, mein süßes Lieb,
Was du einst mit heil’gem Eide mir gelobt?
Täusch mich nicht, verlaß mich nicht,
Du weißt nicht, wie lieb ich dich hab,
Lieb du mich, wie ich dich,
Dann strömt Gottes Huld auf dich herab!
0:00 [m. 1]--Part 1. Lines 1-2. The tenor
sings the first presentation of these lines as a solo. The
melody of the first line winds upward, using gentle long-short
rhythms. The piano harmonizes the melody and includes a
steady downward bass line. After the tenor concludes the
first line in three measures, the piano trails after to complete
the four-bar phrase, echoing with similar long-short leaping
gestures. The melody of the second line is similar,
reaching higher and ending with a reverential “plagal”
cadence. The piano introduces mild syncopation. It
echoes the cadence to complete the phrase over broken bass
0:21 [m. 9]--Lines 1-2 repeated. They are now sung
by the full quartet, the vocal bass mirroring the piano
bass. The soprano takes the melodic line that had been
sung by the tenor solo. The piano here places the
right-hand harmonies after the beat, and they are marked dolce.
The inner voice in the piano’s “echoing” measure is more
active. The tenor enters in syncopation before the other
voices in the second line, in which the piano continues the
right-hand harmonies after the beat, then intensifies the
syncopation. This continues in the “echoing” measure with
thirds that trail down between the melody and the bass.
0:42 [m. 17]--Part 2. Lines 3-4. The tenor
again has a solo role for the first presentation. The two
lines are sung to downward-moving phrases, again using the
long-short rhythm. The piano now has more flowing motion,
with arching left-hand arpeggios and right-hand figures that
begin off the downbeat and seem to “echo” the vocal line with
faster notes but also double the left hand an octave
above. The end of line 4 makes a strong suggestion of the
“relative” C minor. The vocal phrase combines these
shorter lines into four measures. The piano adds a fifth
measure with flowing internal voices, still suggesting C minor.
0:54 [m. 22]--Lines 5-6. The tenor continues,
reaching the highest note so far at the beginning of line 5 and
continuing with two downward sweeps. These end with
poignant chromatic “leaning” notes or “appoggiaturas.” The
piano is more complex here, with arching lines passed from the
right to the left hand, and the right hand continuing with
downward arpeggios against the left-hand arches. Line 6
works its way down to a warm and comforting cadence. The
piano thins out a bit here, with the left hand moving to slower
octaves. There is another trailing fifth measure after the
four-bar vocal phrase, with the right hand working up against
another left-hand arch. This leads into the full quartet
statement of the four lines.
1:07 [m. 27]--Lines 3-4 repeated. The full choir
sings the lines with the soprano on the original tenor
melody. The lower three voices come after the soprano
starts, and they have independent counterpoint. The alto
and tenor enter a half-beat after the soprano and the bass a
half-beat after that. All three lower voices move more
slowly and omit the words “verlaß mich nicht.” The tenor
has mild syncopation. The piano figuration is different
from 0:42 [m. 17]. The arching motion is largely dispensed
with. The “echo” effect is retained, but the melodic notes
alternate with lower ones in the first two measures. The
left hand then moves to wide up-down motion. The piano’s
extra measure is unchanged. There is a new crescendo.
1:20 [m. 32]--Lines 5-6 repeated. After the
buildup, these lines are now begun forte by the quartet,
but they quiet down toward the cadence. Again, the soprano
leads with the original tenor melody, and the lower three voices
have slower independent counterpoint like the previous phrase,
with lines reflecting the chromatic notes in the melody.
They omit the words “wie ich dich.” The piano patterns
revert to nearly the same figuration as heard at 0:54 [m. 22],
with arching lines passed from right to left hand. The
piano’s trailing measure leads into a new dolce cadence
measure with a bass figure followed by an off-beat chord.
1:43--END OF SONG [37 mm.]
SOLO VERSION (E major, Low key C major)
0:00 [m. 1]--Part 1. Lines 1-2. This is the
only solo version where Brahms transposed the “high key” from
the quartet original, moving it up a half-step. The solo
voice sings the original tenor solo line. The piano part,
including the “trailing” measures is unchanged except for one
added harmony note in measure 3.
0:26 [m. 9]--Lines 1-2 repeated. The singer has the
same melody as before, now the original soprano line. The
piano retains the dolce right-hand harmonies after the
beat. A slight rhythmic shift in the piano’s main
descending line may be meant to compensate the absence of the
tenor’s early syncopated entry.
0:53 [m. 17]--Part 2. Lines 3-4. The singer
presents the melody over the same flowing piano lines heard in
the quartet version, with the added fifth measure. This
singer presents the material very broadly.
1:16 [m. 22]--Lines 5-6. The singer reaches the
highest note and sings over the more elaborate piano part as
heard in the quartet version. Again, this singer presents
the lines at a broad tempo.
1:40 [m. 17]--Lines 3-4 repeated, as at 0:53.
Brahms marks a repeat sign here for the statement where the
lower quartet voices had come in with independent counterpoint,
thus also dispensing with the changes in the piano part.
The crescendo added here in the quartet version is
indicated, presumably meant to be observed in both statements.
2:01 [m. 22]--Lines 5-6 repeated, as at 1:16. The
final dolce cadence measure is added after the repeat
sign with the bass figure and off-beat chord. The slow
performance in this recording of Part 2 in particular makes it
about a minute longer than the quartet recording above.
2:45--END OF SONG [27 mm.]
8. “Horch, der Wind klagt in den Zweigen traurig sacht” (“Hart,
the wind laments in the branches, mournful and soft”).
Andantino semplice. Binary strophic form. G
MINOR/MAJOR, 2/4 time. NO SOLO VERSION
Horch, der Wind klagt in den Zweigen traurig sacht;
süßes Lieb, wir müssen Scheiden: gute Nacht.
Ach wie gern in deinen Armen ruhte ich,
doch die Trennungsstunde naht, Gott schütze dich.
Dunkel ist die Nacht, kein Sternlein spendet Licht;
süßes Lieb vertrau auf Gott und weine nicht;
führt der liebe Gott mich einst zu dir zurück,
bleiben ewig wir vereint in Liebesglück.
0:00 [m. 1]--Stanza (strophe) 1. Part 1 (G
minor). Lines 1-2. The first two lines are presented
in a brief fugue/canon. The tenor enters first with the
melancholy three-bar “subject” on the first line, characterized
by its downward-swooping lines and figures with two longer notes
and four shorter ones. The piano doubles and harmonizes it
in thirds with the right hand against syncopated octave leaps in
the bass. The tenor immediately follows in the “dominant”
minor (D minor) with a “countersubject” on the second line with
upward-arching figures, sung against the alto, who enters on the
first line with the “subject” in D minor, the piano right-hand
now harmonizing in sixths. The end of the statement turns
back to G minor.
0:17 [m. 7]--The soprano now enters with the original
“subject” on line 1. The alto sings the upward arching
“countersubject.” The tenor has a new second
“countersubject” with slower downward-swooping lines against the
alto’s rising ones. Tenor and alto both sing line 2 and
the piano harmonizes in thirds. When the bass finally
enters, only the piano has the “subject” in fuller
harmony. All four voices sing line 2, forte.
The soprano has a version of the second “countersubject.”
The other three voices, including the entering bass, sing new
lines that were not part of the counterpoint.
0:33 [m. 13]--Part 2 (G major). Line 3. With
the striking shift to major, the tenor presents this line as a
solo, gently arching down and reaching up. The piano
enters off the beat in each of the three bars to support the
0:42 [m. 16]--Line 4. This line stretches the
three-bar phrase that has characterized this song to six
bars. All four voices sing it, with the soprano on a
melody that continues the tenor’s previous line. The first
text statement does not come to a complete close, and the
soprano repeats “Gott schütze dich” to close on a full
cadence. The lower three voices sing in slower quarter
notes, and they do not reach the words “Gott schütze dich” until
the soprano has already sung them the first time. Then
they join to harmonize the soprano’s second statement of the
words to the cadence, thus repeating no text themselves.
The piano has more flowing sixteenth-note arpeggios in the right
hand against solid bass octaves. It echoes the cadence.
0:57 [m. 22a]--First ending (2 measures). The piano
repeats its echo of the cadence an octave lower with new
harmonization, changing it to minor to prepare for and lead into
the second stanza.
1:03 [m. 1]--Stanza (strophe) 2. Part 1.
Lines 1-2. Tenor and alto entries in fugue/canon, as in
1:19 [m. 7]--Soprano and bass entries, piano statement of
“subject” against bass entry, as at 0:17.
1:35 [m. 13]--Part 2. Line 3. Tenor solo in
major, as at 0:33.
1:44 [m. 16]--Line 4. Longer line with soprano
melody, as at 0:42. The repeated lines in the soprano for
the cadence are “in Liebesglück.”
1:59 [m. 22b]--Second ending (2 measures). The echo
is repeated as before in the first ending, but it remains in
major, and the song is closed off with a gentle rolled chord.
2:09--END OF SONG [23 mm.]
9. “Weit und breit schaut Niemand mich an” (“Far
and wide, no one looks at me”). Allegro - Più
presto. Binary strophic form. G MINOR/MAJOR, 2/4
time. NO SOLO VERSION
Weit und breit schaut niemand mich an,
und wenn sie mich hassen, was liegt mir dran?
Nur mein Schatz der soll mich lieben allezeit,
soll mich küssen, umarmen und herzen in Ewigkeit.
Kein Stern blickt in finsterer Nacht;
keine Blum mir strahlt in duftiger Pracht.
Deine Augen sind mir Blumen Sternenschein,
die mir leuchten so freundlich, die blühen nur mir allein.
(NB: The measure numbering here follows the Breitkopf &
Härtel Sämtliche Werke, with the repetition of lines 1-2
0:00 [m. 1]--Stanza (strophe) 1. Part 1 (G
minor). Lines 1-2. All four voices plunge down in
forceful unison, doubled by the piano, which decorates the
plunge with rapid arpeggios over a downward marching syncopated
octave bass that shadows the voices. The voices break into
harmony after the first four notes. At the end of line 1,
the piano reiterates the last motion at a higher level.
Line 2 begins with a similar forceful unison in faster notes,
still doubled and decorated by the piano over syncopated
octaves. The harmonized ending of this line makes a
striking, unusual motion to F major. The piano uses its
trailing reiteration to move back to the “dominant” harmony in G
0:10 [m. 9]--Lines 1-2 repeated. The last
measure is changed with the piano using a “diminished” harmony
after its trailing reiteration to move toward the “relative”
major key of B-flat.
0:19 [m. 17]--Transition. Line 3
anticipation. Beginning in B-flat major, the words “Nur
mein Schatz” are sung to transition into the faster Part
2. The soprano descends from on high in long-short rhythm
over full-measure notes in the lower voices. The piano has
chords and octaves rapidly alternating between left and right
hands in a general upward motion. Under the last word
“Schatz,” the harmony shifts toward G major with slower piano
0:24 [m. 21]--Part 2 (G major). Più presto.
Lines 3-4. In bright major and at a faster tempo, with
light, detached excitement, the voices sing line 3 in harmony,
the soprano and alto beginning with an upward slide. The
words “soll mich lieben” are repeated in all voices. The
piano figuration is like the arpeggios in Part 1, now over
broken bass octaves. The longer line 4 begins with an
off-beat syncopation in which the piano anticipates the opening
“slide,” now in alto and tenor. “Gasping” pauses break up
the words expressing affection. The piano continues with
the “sliding” figures, harmonized in thirds and octaves.
After a downward motion through the pauses, an emphatic cadence
leads into a bridging piano arpeggio.
0:33 [m. 31]--Transition varied. The opening words
of line 3 are again sung with the soprano descent, but now the
harmony is in the “dominant” key of D major, and the lower
voices have slightly more motion. The piano again
alternates harmonies and octaves between the hands but does not
0:37 [m. 35]--Lines 3-4, varied repetition. Line 3
is given a subtle but effective variation in this
repetition. The soprano melody and the static vocal bass
are the same, but the alto and tenor are changed to have a more
direct descent. The tenor uses longer notes that stand out
against the texture, omitting the text repetition as well as the
word “allezeit.” The arpeggios in the right hand of the
piano are also moved up a third. Line 4 is then presented
without variation. A four-measure “first ending” for the
piano uses hammered chords and dramatic pauses to shift back to
the minor for the second stanza.
0: 51 [m. 1]--Stanza (strophe) 2. Part 1.
Lines 1-2. A da capo repeat indication leads back
to the beginning. The lines are sung beginning with the
plunging minor-key unison, as in stanza 1.
1:00 [m. 9]--Lines 1-2 repeated with new final measure
(“second ending”), as at 0:10.
1:09 [m. 17]--Transition. Line 3 anticipation, as
at 0:19. The words “Deine Augen” are one syllable longer,
accommodated in the lower parts by splitting held notes.
1:13 [m. 21]--Part 2. Lines 3-4, as at 0:24.
The repeated words in all voices are “sind mir Blumen.”
The pauses in the comparisons between the sweetheart’s eyes and
the flowers are not quite as natural as in stanza 1, but they
still work well.
1:23 [m. 31]--Transition varied, as at 0:33.
1:27 [m. 35]--Lines 3-4, varied repetition, as at
0:37. The tenor here omits the repetition of “sind mir
Blumen” and the initial words “Deine Augen” (which were just
sung in the transition). The tenor line thus begins with a
single statement of “sind mir Blumen.” The second ending
has the initial hammered chords now remaining in major, removes
the dramatic pauses, and adds a closing G-major chord. It
is one measure shorter than the first ending.
1:43--END OF SONG [48 mm. (47 mm. stanza 2)]
10. “Mond verhüllt sein Angesicht” (“The moon is veiling her
face”). Andantino. Binary strophic form with first
part repeated in each strophe (AAB). B-FLAT MAJOR, 2/4
time. NO SOLO VERSION
German Text :
Mond verhüllt sein Angesicht,
süßes Lieb, ich zürne dir nicht.
Wollt ich zürnend dich betrüben, sprich
wie könnt ich dich dann lieben?
Heiß für dich mein Herz entbrennt,
keine Zunge dir’s bekennt.
Bald in Liebesrausch unsinnig,
bald wie Täubchen sanft und innig.
(NB: The measure numbering here follows the Breitkopf &
Härtel Sämtliche Werke, with the repetition of Part 1
0:00 [m. 1]--Stanza (strophe) 1. Part 1.
Lines 1-2. The setting is characterized by entries of
soprano/alto and tenor/bass as pairs. There is a
two-measure forte piano introduction that sets up the
pervasive tremolo figures in thirds that evoke the
Hungarian cimbalom. These appear in the left hand against
sighing thirds in the right with long-short rhythms. In
the second measure, the B-flat home key is already a “dominant”
harmony in E-flat, and when the soprano and alto enter in the
third bar, they sing the first line in a mixture of G major and
minor, with minor prevalent, in expressive down and up
motion. After upward triplet arpeggios under the voices,
the piano restates the introduction in G major that becomes a
“dominant” in C.
0:13 [m. 7]--The tenor and bass now sing the first line
with the same basic motion, but moving toward F major and then D
minor. The piano’s figuration begins as it had with the
soprano/alto entry but does not break into triplet
arpeggios. Before the tenor and bass finish the line, the
soprano and alto begin line 2 in third-based harmony on a broad
arching phrase, moving back toward F major. Overlapping
with the end of the statement in the same manner, the tenor and
bass sing the second line, the harmony taking a somewhat
tortured path back to B-flat for the repetition of Part 1.
The two voices close on the opening downbeat.
0:26 [m. 13]--Part 1 repeated. The tenor and bass
conclusion overlaps with the beginning of the piano
introduction, then the soprano and alto have their initial entry
before the restatement of the introduction.
0:38 [m. 19]--Overlapping statements of tenor/bass line
1, soprano/alto line 2, and tenor/bass line 2, as at 0:13.
The tenor and bass conclusion overlaps now with the opening of
0:51 [m. 25]--Part 2. Lines 3-4. The piano
now has the “cimbalom” tremolo figures almost continuously in
the right hand against broad arches and broken octaves in
long-short rhythm. The soprano and alto enter with line 3
in B-flat. Both parts have a narrow range, but they do not
move together on the text, the alto initially moving faster,
then slowing down as the soprano completes its sighing
melody. By the end of their phrase, they have shifted the
key to E-flat. The tenor and bass enter with their
lengthened statement of the line a full measure before the
soprano and alto finish, with the same “offset” motion between
the pair of voices. Before they complete it, the soprano
and alto begin line 4 with the overlapping word “sprich.”
0:59 [m. 29]--The key has shifted again on “sprich” with
the “dominant” chord in G minor, where the soprano and alto
continue with line 4 as the tenor and bass complete line 3
(except for the overlapping “sprich”). The soprano and
alto move again, now toward F major, as the tenor and bass enter
with “sprich” and continue with their statement of line 4.
The same “offset” motion between the two voices of each pair
continues as it has been established. The soprano and alto
now join the conclusion of the tenor/bass statement of line 4,
breaking the overlapping entries and striving to bring the
harmony back home to B-flat, but a rogue A-flat in the alto
again suggests a pull toward E-flat as the voices conclude the
1:10 [m. 34]--The voices close off the strophe by
repeating “dann lieben” together in slower notes, the tenor with
a brief anticipation on the word “dich.” All voices except
the tenor break up the final word “lieben” with quarter rests,
the tenor sustaining its notes for a full half-note
length. The approach to the final cadence is unusual, with
a struggle to reach B-flat as a destination. The piano
ends its “cimbalom” tremolo on E-flat (as a
“subdominant”), and then the cadence harmony uses a “diminished
seventh” with the note G-flat borrowed from the minor rather
than the standard cadence from the “dominant.” The piano’s
slow upward figures on this cadence are played against bass
octaves on B-flat.
1:17 [m. 1]--Stanza (strophe) 2. Part 1.
Lines 1-2. The return to the beginning for the second
verse is indicated with a da capo repeat from m.
36. Piano introduction, soprano/alto statement of line 1
and restatement of the introduction in G, as at the opening.
1:30 [m. 7]--Overlapping statements of tenor/bass line 1,
soprano/alto line 2, and tenor/bass line 2, as at 0:13.
The tenor and bass conclude the word “bekennt” as the Part 1
1:43 [m. 13]--Part 1 repeated, as at 0:26.
Introduction, soprano/alto entry, and restatement of
1:55 [m. 19]--Overlapping statements of tenor/bass line
1, soprano/alto line 2, and tenor/bass line 2, as in the stanza
1 repetition at 0:38 with the stanza 2 text from 1:30, the
conclusion overlapping with Part 2.
2:08 [m. 25]--Part 2. Lines 3-4. “Cimbalom” tremolo
in piano right hand. Overlapping entries of line 3 in
soprano/alto and tenor/bass with varied “offset” motion between
the voices of each pair, as at 0:51. The “overlapping”
word leading into line 4 is the repetition of “bald.”
2:17 [m. 29]--Overlapping entries of line 4 in
soprano/alto and tenor/bass, with soprano and alto entering at
end of tenor/bass statement, as at 0:59.
2:27 [m. 34]--Voices close with repetition of “und innig”
(the tenor anticipating with “sanft”), as at 1:10.
2:36 [m. 37]--The piano adds descending inversions of the
B-flat chord on the second beat of two added bars (the second
chord held) to close this most contrapuntally and tonally
complex of the Zigeunerlieder.
2:47--END OF SONG [38 mm.]
11. “Rote Abendwolken zieh’n am Firmament” (“Red evening clouds
drift across the heavens”). Allegro passionato.
Binary form. D-FLAT MAJOR, 2/4 time.
Rote Abendwolken zieh’n am Firmament,
Sehnsuchtsvoll nach dir, mein Lieb, das Herze brennt,
Himmel strahlt in glühnder Pracht,
Und ich träum bei Tag und Nacht
Nur allein von dem süßen Liebchen mein.
0:00 [m. 1]--Part 1. Line 1. The piano begins
with two emphatic chords in an introductory measure. The
tenor then enters with a solo presentation of the line, sweeping
down and soaring back up before cutting off on a downward
leap. The piano accompaniment is exciting, with pulsating
left-hand syncopations in the middle range. The right hand
participates in some of the syncopation, but also has internal
motion from weak beats to strong beats. Approaching the
end of the phrase, the left hand moves to the bass and the right
hand becomes less syncopated. The piano extends the phrase
by a measure. Its opening and closing measures balance the
tenor’s six-bar statement into a regular eight-measure phrase.
0:07 [m. 9]--Line 2. The key abruptly shifts up a minor
third to E major for this phrase, starting with the two emphatic
piano chords. The keys are not as unrelated as may
seem. The “relative” minor key of E major is C-sharp
minor, which is the “home” or “parallel” minor key to D-flat
major (D-flat and C-sharp being “enharmonic” or identical
pitches). After the piano chords, the tenor has a similar
vocal phrase for line 2, with a new down-up swing at the end
turning to the “relative” C-sharp minor to ease the transition
back to D-flat. The piano patterns are also mostly a
direct transposition with the modification at the end.
0:14 [m. 17]--Line 1 repeated. Back in D-flat, the
full quartet now has a statement of the line, again beginning
with the piano chords. The soprano takes the original
tenor melody. In the quartet harmonies, the tenor begins
with a longer note and shortens “Abendwolken” to “Wolken.”
The bass has a solid marching line, and the alto is especially
active. The voices extend their closing note into the
piano’s extension bar. The piano part itself is unchanged
from the statement with the solo tenor.
0:21 [m. 25]--Line 2 repeated. The piano chords
again abruptly shift to E major. The quartet sings the
second line, the soprano again taking the original tenor
melody. Again, the tenor begins with a longer note, now
omitting the words “nach dir.” Again, the piano part is
unchanged, and the voices sing into the extending measure.
0:27 [m. 33]--Part 2. Lines 3-4. The key
signature is marked as D-flat, but the piano chords help in a
shift toward its “dominant” key of A-flat. After the
chords, the tenor is again given the first statement of the
lines as a solo. Suddenly quiet, the vocal line rises
steadily in two four-measure waves, the first in the “dominant”
A-flat and the second in D-flat. The piano harmonizes the
melody in the right hand and continues with syncopated patterns
in the left, now all in the bas register and moving lower.
The volume builds at the end of the second “wave” and the piano
has a three-bar extension echoing and prolonging the end of the
vocal line, building up to forte. With the opening
chords, the entire phrase is twelve measures.
0:38 [m. 45]--Line 5. For the first time, there is
vocal participation in the opening chords, previously the domain
of the piano alone. The tenor begins the line with the
piano on those, then continues in the manner of line 1, but
extending it with a wide upward leap of a seventh on “süßen” and
broadening the downward descent. The piano part has
syncopation in both hands and internal motion like that in lines
1-2. The piano diverts and extends the cadence after the
tenor’s arrival, giving it a “plagal” character. The
tenor’s line, including the opening chords, is eight measures
with the last note held into a ninth. The piano then
extends the phrase for another measure, the delayed cadence, for
a total of ten.
0:46 [m. 55]--Lines 3-4 repeated. The piano has the
same chord shifting toward the “dominant.” The lines are
sung by the full quartet, the soprano as usual on the original
tenor melody over the two waves. The voices mostly move in
block harmonies, with one mild syncopation added in the
bass. The piano part is as at 0:27 [m. 33]. In the
three-bar extension previously taken by the piano alone, the
voices now sing along, repeating the words “bei Tag und Nacht”
and greatly increasing the power of the buildup. The
piano’s left hand, which had syncopated octave leaps in its solo
extension, now continues the pattern of pulsation.
0:57 [m. 67]--Line 5 repeated. The quartet sings
the line beginning with the chords, the soprano on the
melody. They extend the vocal presentation to participate
in the piano’s extension of the cadence. This involves
text repetition, with the alto and bass repeating “dem süßen,”
the soprano simply repeating the final word “mein” on the
cadence note D-flat. The tenor, who had originally
presented the melody, has a longer note on “allein” and trails
the others on the text, adding no repetition and joining the
alto and bass on “Liebchen” during the cadence extension.
In the piano part, only the final cadence measure is slightly
altered to conclude the song rather then propelling forward,
adding a fermata as all voices reach “mein.”
1:17 (runoff after 1:09)--END OF SONG [76 mm.]
END OF SET
SOLO VERSION--No. 8 (D-flat major, Low key B-flat major)
0:00 [m. 1]--Part 1. Line 1. The opening
piano chords are presented as in the quartet version, and there
are no alterations to the vocal part sung by the tenor in the
0:09 [m. 9]--Line 2. The key shift occurs, and the
solo voice sings the original tenor line. The piano part
is unchanged. Curiously, in the low key, the key shift is
from B-flat to the “original” D-flat.
0:16 [m. 1]--Line 1 repeated. Without the full
quartet, the section is here simply marked with a repeat sign.
0:24 [m. 9]--Line 2 repeated.
0:31 [m. 17]--Lines 3-4. Two waves with three-bar
extension. The piano bass uses the continuing pulsations
originally heard in the quartet statement, not the octave leaps
from the tenor presentation, but the voice does not sing the
extension as the quartet had done.
0:42 [m. 29]--Line 5. The singer joins the opening
chords as in the initial tenor statement. The extension of
the cadence leads into the repetition (with repeat sign) back
from m. 38.
0:51 [m. 17]--Lines 3-4 repeated.
1:02 [m. 29]--Line 5 repeated. In the one major
change from the quartet version, the piano is given a new
two-bar extension to fully round off the phrase to twelve
bars. This is done by repeating the forward-propelling
measure before the repeat (as m. 39) and then using the
concluding chord with fermata from the end of the
quartet version (as m. 40). This adds a much-needed sense
of finality that is absent without the presence of the full
quartet to sing on the final chord.
1:26 (runoff after 1:18)--END OF SONG [40 mm.]
END OF SET
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