FIFTEEN ROMANCES FROM L. TIECK’S “MAGELONE” (SONG
The song cycle was one of the most quintessential
products of early romanticism in music. The great examples
Schubert and Schumann, and the later French cycles by composers
Fauré, are among the most familiar of all art songs.
rather curious, then, that the spiritual follower of Schubert and
Schumann in song composition should have only composed one real
cycle.” It is even more curious that, while including much
music, it is not entirely successful. By definition, a “song
cycle” consists of songs setting a single poet, and the settings
typically of poems that were grouped together by the poet
himself. The “Magelone” romances fit that definition.
cycle is one of the major products of the “first maturity,” the
of the four periods of composition traditionally assigned to
Brahms. It is not only by far his largest group of songs,
is one of his largest single works overall. It takes nearly
hour to perform it. Not only is the cycle long as a whole,
consists of very long songs. Brahms avoided strophic forms,
opting for dramatic shifts in tempo, rhythm, and musical
material. Many of them are unusually sectional, beginning
ending with contrasting moods and content. The piano parts
also quite elaborate, and several songs have extensive
and postludes. Brahms never again wrote anything quite like
songs, and the cycle is a fine example of the temperament of the
but still youthful composer at his most romantic phase, before
the famous beard and coming to represent the preservation of
in “serious” music.
Recording: Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, baritone; Daniel Barenboim,
[DG 449 633-2]
published 1865. Numbers 7-15 published 1868-69.
Dedicated to Julius Stockhausen.
Ludwig Tieck (1773-1853) was a popular early romantic poet and
dramatist. The poems that Brahms set in his Op. 33 came not
a collection of verse. They were lyrical “interludes” in
short novel The Wondrous Love
of the Beautiful Magelone and Count Peter of Provence.
novel was a favorite of Brahms in his youth. The poems
somewhat on the action of the novel. Most of the settings
the voice of the protagonist, Count Peter, so the cycle is almost
always performed by a man, but No. 13 is in the voice of the
daughter. Brahms omitted two of Tieck’s seventeen poems
coming between No. 14 and No. 15). He clearly wanted to
the drama of the novel in the course of his cycle. This
the many large and unusual forms employed. Nos. 3, 6, and 9
a length and scope of material not otherwise seen in Brahms’s song
output, and No. 1 is also an unusually large narrative
There are shorter songs, however, such as No. 2. Brahms
world of chivalry in this song and in others. There are
imitations of Peter’s lute, suggestive galloping rhythms, and even
sweet lullaby (but on a far grander scale than the extremely
lullaby from Op. 49) in No. 9. The guides below will provide
brief outline (in italics) of the story leading to each
This outline comes from Stanley Appelbaum’s translations of the
in the Dover edition of the songs. In a later edition of the
poems alone (excluding No. 2), Tieck gave them one-word titles
a noun expressing an emotional state). The novel (which
used) included titles for only Nos. 10 and 13.
Note: Links to English translations of the texts are from Emily
site at http://www.recmusic.org/lieder.
the most part, 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
(included here) are also visible in the translation links.
SCORE FROM IMSLP (First Edition from Brahms-Institut
Lübeck--original keys; matches the revisions of Nos. 3 and 4
the complete edition described in the notes at the bottom of the
and also includes a similar discrepancy in mm. 63-65 of No. 4 that
not make it into the complete edition)
SCORE FROM IMSLP (From Breitkopf & Härtel Sämtliche
Werke--includes the revisions of Nos. 3
and 4, which Brahms apparently later rejected,
as described at the bottom of the guide)
ONLINE SCORE FROM IMSLP (Edition Peters, edited by Max
1: Keinen hat es noch gereut (original key)
2: Traun! Bogen und Pfeil sind gut für den Feind
3: Sind es Schmerzen, sind es Freuden (original
original version of the passage described in the note at the
the guide as a variant reading)
4: Liebe kam aus fernen Landen (original key--contains the
version of the passage described in the note at the bottom of the
guide, which is sung by Fischer-Dieskau in the recording)
5: So willst du des Armen dich gnädig erbarmen?
6: Wie soll ich die Freude, die Wonne denn tragen? (original
7: War es dir, dem diese Lippen bebten? (original key)
8: Wir müssen uns trennen, geliebtes Saitenspiel
9: Ruhe, Süßliebchen, im Scatten (original key)
10: Verzweiflung. So tönet denn schäumende
11: Wie schnell verschwindet so Licht als Glanz (original
12: Muß es eine Trennung geben (original key)
13: Sulima. Geliebter, wo zaudert dein irrender
14: Wie froh und frisch mein Sinn sich hebt (original key)
15: Treue Liebe dauert lange (original key)
1-15 (Low key edition, complete--includes
original versions of the passages from Nos. 3
and 4 as described in the notes at the bottom of the guide)
1. “Keinen hat es noch gereut” (“No one has yet regretted”).
Allegro. Through-composed form with rondo-like
E-FLAT MAJOR, 3/4 time (Low key C major). [Title in later
edition: Ermunterung (Encouragement)].
The young knight Peter is full of unformulated dreams until a
minstrel sings this song.
Keinen hat es noch gereut,
Der das Roß bestiegen,
Um in frischer Jugendzeit
Durch die Welt zu fliegen.
Berge und Auen,
Mädchen und Frauen
Prächtig im Kleide,
Alles erfreut ihn mit schöner Gestalt.
Wünsche in jugendlich trunkenem Sinn.
Ruhm streut ihm Rosen
Schnell in die Bahn,
Lieben und Kosen,
Lorbeer und Rosen
Führen ihn höher und höher hinan.
Rund um ihn Freuden,
Erliegend, den Held. -
Dann wählt er bescheiden
Das Fräulein, das ihm nur vor allen gefällt.
Und Berge und Felder
Und einsame Wälder
Mißt er zurück.
Die Eltern in Tränen,
Ach, alle ihr Sehnen -
Sie alle verreinigt das lieblichste Glück.
Sind Jahre verschwunden,
Erzählt er dem Sohn
In traulichen Stunden,
Und zeigt seine Wunden,
Der Tapferkeit Lohn.
So bleibt das Alter selbst noch jung,
Ein Lichtstrahl in der Dämmerung.
0:00 [m. 1]--Stanza
The piano sets up a strong opening with ascending chords blatantly
imitating a pair of hunting horns playing (the harmony is the
“horn fifths” progression of the natural horn). The
of the first two lines of the introductory first stanza continues
emphatic character. They begin with a decisive descending
arpeggio whose importance will be revealed at the end of the last
0:10 [m. 14]--The piano
tentatively begins the “galloping” rhythm that will characterize
unify much of the song. It is typically a turning figure
down to a note a half-step lower and back. The remainder of
stanza 1 is sung above the “galloping” rhythm, now in the bass.
0:18 [m. 26]--An interlude
has the “galloping” rhythm even lower in the bass while the “horn
fifth” harmonies are heard in the right hand, briefly suggesting
minor key. The entire first stanza and this interlude could
considered an “introduction” to the rest of the song, as the stage
been set, the “characters” introduced (especially the “galloping”
rhythm), and the action seems to get moving with the second
stanza. The music begins to die down in preparation for the
vocal entrance, but the “galloping” remains constant in the bass.
0:30 [m. 41]--Stanza
The vocal “hook” at the beginning of this stanza is heard
and also contributes to unifying a song with an irregular
The vocal line largely matches the prevailing rhythm with a
upbeat melody. The piano incorporates the “galloping” rhythm
thicker chords. There is some harmonic color introduced in
last two lines, which come to an incomplete close. A brief
leads to the next stanza.
0:44 [m. 60]--Stanza
The rhythm continues, but the musical material is new. The
is also shorter (the poem is obviously irregular in the length and
meter of its stanzas). The vocal line is higher at the
beginning. The entire stanza is much more quiet. The
turns to the minor at the end of the verse, and the last line
for “Wünsche”) is repeated.
0:55 [m. 75]--A more
substantial, but rather bare interlude leads to the next verse,
continuing in minor.
1:01 [m. 82]--Stanza
In the only large scale repetition in the song, the music matches
of stanza 2, although the opening vocal “hook” will again appear
stanzas 6 and 7, which veer in new directions. Although
is shorter than stanza 2 in the poem, Brahms tailors it to match
music by repeating the words “führen ihn höher.”
same brief bridge follows, as in stanza 2.
1:15 [m. 101]--Stanza
Although the contour of the melody is different, it is extremely
similar to that of stanza 3, and the piano matches stanza 3
the beginning, although the voice is louder. The first three
lines correspond quite closely to that verse. The point of
divergence is the key change, which is now to G minor instead of
“home” minor key of E-flat. The last line, together with
“beneiden” from the second, are repeated to approximate the length
the third verse. The word “Freuden” from line 1 is also
twice in succession. A brief interlude with chromatic motion
leads to the last two lines of the stanza.
1:30 [m. 121]--The last
lines are set to completely new music. The “galloping”
finally takes a break for the line mentioning the feminine
the music takes an appropriately contemplative turn. The
set twice. The first is in G major, matching the G minor of
preceding cadence. The piano left hand has leaps down to
broken octaves under right hand harmonies that follow the vocal
line. There are some chromatic notes. It does not come
complete close, and an altered version of the “chromatic”
before 1:30 modulates to E-flat, where the second statement
1:42 [m. 135]--The second
statement corresponds to the first statement, but slight
the melody place it in the home key of E-flat rather than A-flat,
would have been expected since the melody begins a half-step above
first statement. A repetition of the words “vor allen”
asserts E-flat, and a full close coincides with a return to the
“galloping” rhythm and a slightly longer version of the “brief
heard after stanzas 2 and 4.
1:57 [m. 153]--Stanza
The “galloping” rhythm having been reintroduced, it is quickly
abandoned again in favor of arching right-hand arpeggios with the
note repeated and a slower left hand mostly in octaves. The
“hook” from stanzas 2 and 4 is heard, but the melody moves in new
directions. A brief motion to minor is heard in the second
line. The music seems to be building and striving
In the last two lines, echo effects of the vocal line are joyously
introduced in the right hand, the arching arpeggios moving to the
left. On its second entrance in the last line (which is a
higher than the vocal line it echoes), the “echo” pattern
through a rather long, generally descending and receding interlude
after the singer comes to a half-close.
2:28 [m. 191]--Stanza
The final verse begins in a similar manner to stanza 6, with the
arching arpeggios in the right hand. After the first line,
however, there are divergences. The second line does not
minor, although there are colorful harmonic detours throughout the
verse, notably to A-flat. Three groups of two words are
to lengthen the stanza somewhat. The first is “der
Tapferkeit.” It is at this point that the “echo effects”
stanza 6 are heard again before the last two lines.
2:47 [m. 213]--The next
repeated words are “das Alter,” also followed by the “echo
effects.” The left-hand arpeggios enter a last time before
final line, and continue through the first statement of that line
the last group of two repeated words, “ein Lichtstrahl”). To
point, although there are differences, the stanza is relatively
to the previous one. This last line suddenly tapers off and
music seems to “put on the brakes” as the last syllable of
“Dämmerung” makes an extremely colorful turn to C-flat.
3:04 [m. 230]--The music
suddenly subdued, the final line of text is sung a second time
the repetition of “ein Lichtstrahl”). The galloping rhythm
the arching arpeggios are sacrificed for a slower-moving
and longer notes in the vocal part. The line begins in the
C-flat major, turning only at the last word to the home key.
first syllable of “Dämmerung” is sustained for three measures
before the last quiet vocal cadence.
3:17 [m. 241]--As the
finishes, the piano resumes the galloping rhythm for a rather
postlude. The former pace returns, but not the volume, which
remains quiet to the end. At fist, we hear reminiscences of
now-familiar “hook” from stanzas 2, 4, 6, and 7, but then the
hand dissolves into high, light chords. The pervasive
rhythm in the bass continues as the music dies away.
3:41--END OF SONG [257 mm.]
2. “Traun! Bogen und Pfeil sind gut für den Feind”
(“Verily! Bow and arrow are useful against the
Kräftig (Forcefully). Alternating strophic form
(ABAB’A’). C MINOR, 3/4 time (Low key A minor).
Then Peter asks his parents to let him travel in search of
adventure. His mother gives him three rings for his future
bride. On leaving home, Peter sings what is described as
Traun! Bogen und Pfeil
Sind gut für den Feind,
Der Elende weint;
Dem Edlen blüht Heil,
Wo Sonne nur scheint,
Die Felsen sind steil,
Doch Glück ist sein Freund.
The poem is not divided into stanzas, but Brahms logically
into two groups of four lines.
0:00 [m. 1]--Verse 1 (A). No
beginning is immediately forceful and rather heavy, with thumping
bass octaves and strong dotted rhythms. There are
upward striving flourishes that lend variety to the steady
The modal-flavored minor key and the general archaic character are
reminiscent of Brahms’s ballad settings (such as Op. 14, No. 3 and
43, No. 4). The last two lines are repeated. The top
of the piano doubles the singer until the first statement of the
line, after which the piano right hand gains more character
half-beats. The key is changed to G minor at the last minute
the second statement of the fourth line, and the verse cadences
0:16 [m. 13]--An interlude
continues the forceful, heavy character, with rich chords and
thirds in the right hand. The music moves back to C minor.
0:22 [m. 17]--Verse 2 (B). The first two lines
and sixth of the poem) are set in E-flat major, a key relative to
minor. The piano becomes less active, playing rising upbeat
groups, and the voice, though now in major, seems even more
than before, moving in strong arpeggios. The last two lines
(seventh and eighth) shift abruptly to the more remote D-flat
but are set analogously. The last line is repeated on longer
descending notes, wrenching the music home to C minor.
0:37 [m. 28]--The piano
becomes more active, with three downward-moving bass octaves
an exact repetition of the text and music of verse 1 (A).
0:53 [m. 41]--The
from 0:16 [m. 13] is repeated exactly.
0:59 [m. 45]--A textual
repetition of verse 2, but the music is first transposed and then
changed (B’). The
two lines are set in the “home” major key of C instead of the
“relative” key of E-flat. Correspondingly, the last two
set in B-flat (a whole step down, as D-flat was to E-flat), but
actual musical line is changed, moving up instead of down.
piano part is also completely different, matching the rhythm of
voice with some internal motion, and sounding almost
The repetition of the last line again moves to C minor in a rather
jarring manner, but from a different key.
1:14 [m. 56]--The
downward-moving bass octaves lead to a final repetition of the
verse (A’). The
line is mostly the same, but the piano is varied, entering on
half-beats the entire time rather than doubling the voice at the
beginning. Groups of three notes and chords are followed by
rest and then a single off-beat chord. The groups of three
upward at first, then downward under the last line. The last
(line 4 of the poem) is changed on its repetition to strive
close more emphatically, and end in the home key of C minor.
piano pattern breaks at the end, with three separate off-beat
under the higher-striving close.
1:29 [m. 68]--With the
of the last word, the piano ends with a postlude that is a
the previous interludes from 0:16 [m. 13] and 0:53 [m. 41].
final cadence introduces the “picardy third” (making the final
major in a minor key), another archaic-sounding device. The
cadence is lengthened with an typical internal motion and a rising
syncopated arpeggio in the bass.
1:45--END OF SONG [72 mm.]
3. “Sind es Schmerzen, sind es Freuden” (“Are they sorrows or are
joys”). Andante--Vivace. Large multi-sectional form
(AABB’CDC’). A-FLAT MAJOR, 4/4 and 6/8 time (Low key G-flat
major). [Later title: Zweifel
In Naples, he and Magelone, the
king’s daughter, fall in love at a distance as he wins tourneys
incognito. In his ardor he sings this song.
Sind es Schmerzen, sind es Freuden,
Die durch meinen Busen ziehn?
Alle alten Wünsche scheiden,
Tausend neue Blumen blühn.
Durch die Dämmerung der Tränen
Seh’ ich ferne Sonnen stehn, -
Welches Schmachten? welches Sehnen!
Wag’ ich’s? soll ich näher gehn?
Ach, und fällt die Träne nieder,
Ist es dunkel um mich her;
Dennoch kömmt kein Wunsch mir wieder,
Zukunft ist von Hoffnung leer.
So schlage denn, strebendes Herz,
So fließet denn, Tränen, herab,
Ach, Lust ist nur tieferer Schmerz,
Leben ist dunkles Grab, -
Soll ich erdulden?
Wie ist’s, daß mir im Traum
Auf und nieder schwanken!
Ich kenne mich noch kaum.
O, hört mich, ihr gütigen Sterne,
O höre mich, grünende Flur,
Du, Liebe, den heiligen Schwur:
Bleib’ ich ihr ferne,
Sterb’ ich gerne.
Ach, nur im Licht von ihrem Blick
Wohnt Leben und Hoffnung und Glück!
0:00 [m. 1]--An unusually
piano introduction gives an idea of the large scope of this
It is sweetly expressive, with gently rolled chords and broken
suggesting Peter’s lute. The melody is mostly harmonized in
euphonious double thirds or sixths, with thicker chords in the
half, where the volume also becomes louder. The last two
introduce a brief triplet rhythm with wide leaps.
0:43 [m. 10]--Stanza 1 (A). The vocal line
the expressive melody heard at the beginning of the piano
introduction. It is characterized by turning figures on
such as the second “sind” and “Busen.” The lute-like rolled
chords continue in the piano between low octave leaps in the
bass. The harmony of the verse moves to a
last three bars of the introduction (with the leaping triplets)
at this half-cadence (triplets start a bar earlier) and lead to
repetition of the material for the second verse.
1:34 [m. 10]--Stanza 2 (A). This verse is set to
same music as stanza 1, and Brahms even indicates this with a
sign rather than notating the music twice. Again, the
half-cadence arrives with a repetition of the end of the
but the chords in the last measure are not rolled, since they now
to new material that does not include the lute imitation.
2:23 [m. 21]--Stanza 3 (B). This verse and the
are set in the home minor key (A-flat minor). The vocal line
more detached and hesitant, as is the piano, which abandons the
chords for more bare right and left hand alternations.
third line, the piano states the main melody of the introduction
the previous verses in minor, and the singer then also presents it
minor. The last line includes a very slow turn figure before
cadence, which remains in minor. A brief bridge continues
piano pattern, but again includes rolled chords.
3:11 [m. 33]--Stanza 4 (B’). Essentially set to
same music as stanza 3 with several slight alterations (including
upbeats) due to text declamation. The piano part is varied
last two lines. Line 3 has the piano harmonize a third above
voice, whereas in verse 3 it had doubled the vocal line (this is
minor-key version of the opening melody). The last line
a new descending four-note figure in the right hand. The
bridge at the end is the same as before.
3:58 [m. 45]--Stanza 5 (C). This stanza of the
has two more lines and a completely different meter than the
verses, not to mention a sudden contrast of mood. Brahms
by suddenly changing the meter and tempo. Now in 6/8 time,
speed is the lively “Vivace” in contrast to the much slower
“Andante.” Upper neighbor note figures become prominent in
piano. The third, fourth, and fifth lines move strongly
D-flat major. At that point, the voice and piano become
boisterous, their figures resembling hunting horn calls. The
line moves to a half cadence.
4:11 [m. 57]--The text and
music of stanza 5 (C) are
repeated with a slightly varied piano part and vocal line.
repetition is best considered part of the first C in the larger form since
no new text, and since the later C’
also includes both statements of the material. The first
the voice part is set a third higher. The words “auf and
are repeated twice in the fifth line, adding an extra
The last line is drawn out in longer notes than before and now
a full cadence in A-flat major. Three bare piano octaves
downward, leading to the next section.
4:26 [m. 71]--Stanza 6,
1-3 (D). The tempo
still “Vivace,” but Brahms suddenly and unexpectedly moves back to
meter and yet more new material. The right hand of the piano
thumps out octave G’s on the half-beats as the left hand strides
down in the low register, also in octaves. The voice arches
and up in a disjunct line suggesting the key of C minor (as do the
octave G’s in the piano). Before line 3, the drumming
abandoned in favor of more breathless figures. The voice
the disjunct line in favor of a steadily upward stepwise
striving. Line 3 is stated twice, and the music moves back
4:44 [m. 82]--Lines 4 and
suddenly arrest the motion and move freely over long, sustained
chords. They come to an expectant half-cadence, not in
but in D-flat (a key associated with much of C). The two lines could
considered a transition from D
back to the C material,
indeed, they occur in the following C’
section. They are also the emotional goal of the poem.
4:55 [m. 86]--Stanza 6,
6-7, incorporating lines 4-5 (C’).
return to 6/8 meter, where the song will end. The difference
from the first C section
primarily at the beginning, which replaces the first four measures
two new ones reiterating the word “Ach!” (which is heard three
succession) and including piano figures in the “hunting-horn”
vein. The music also begins in D-flat rather than moving
there. With the third “Ach!” the music closely follows that
stanza 5 (from line 3). The words “nur im Licht” are
compensate for the different amount of text leading to the last
line. Since line 7 of this verse is longer than line 6 of
5, an extra measure is added to this line.
5:06 [m. 97]--This music
matches that at 4:11 [m. 57]. A repetition of lines 4 and 5
the poetic stanza (previously heard in the “transition” at 4:44
82]) replaces the reiterated “Ach!” (which had in turn replaced
first two lines of “poetry” as heard in stanza 5). “Sterb’ ich
is set a third higher than “soll ich erdulden” in the
spot of the first C.
the repetition of lines 6-7, not only are the words “nur im Licht”
stated twice, but also the words “von ihrem” (corresponding to the
repeated “auf und nieder” in stanza 5). The final statement
line 7 is an even more emphatic cadence than at the end of the
first C section,
including a new terminal
turn figure and other new notes because of the longer line.
short postlude in the mood of the C
section, including an emphatic final rolled chord, brings this
diverse song to a close in a completely different mood from the
lyrical lute imitations of the beginning.
5:37--END OF SONG [115 mm.]
4. “Liebe kam aus fernen Landen” (“Love came from a far-off
land”). Andante--Poco vivace e sempre animato. Large
ternary form with abbreviated return (ABA’-CDC-A”). D-FLAT
4/4 time (Low key C major). [Later title: Hoffnung
He sends Magelone two of the
one with this song...
Liebe kam aus fernen Landen
Und kein Wesen folgte ihr,
Und die Göttin winkte mir,
Schlang mich ein mit süßen Banden.
Da begann ich Schmerz zu fühlen,
Tränen dämmerten den Blick:
Ach! was ist der Liebe Glück,
Klagt’ ich, wozu dieses Spielen?
Keinen hab’ ich weit gefunden,
Sagte lieblich die Gestalt,
Fühle du nun die Gewalt,
Die die Herzen sonst gebunden.
Alle meine Wünsche flogen
In der Lüfte blauen Raum,
Ruhm schien mir ein Morgentraum,
Nur ein Klang der Meereswogen
Ach! wer löst nun meine Ketten?
Denn gefesselt ist der Arm,
Mich umfleucht der Sorgen Schwarm;
Keiner, keiner will mich retten?
Darf ich in den Spiegel schauen,
Den die Hoffnung vor mir hält?
Ach, wie trügend ist die Welt!
Nein, ich kann ihr nicht vertrauen.
O, und dennoch laß nicht wanken,
Was dir nur noch Stärke gibt,
Wenn die Einz’ge dich nicht liebt,
Bleib nur bittrer Tod dem Kranken.
The larger ternary form is superimposed on two smaller ternary
forms. The first section comprises three stanzas that are in
simple ABA form. The same applies to the middle section in a
faster tempo (whose parts will be labeled CDC). The form is
rounded with a return to one statement of A. The seven
all have the same meter, rhyme scheme, and length (unlike No. 1
0:00 [m. 1]--Stanza 1 (A). With no
singer begins the gentle, attractive melody opening with two
leaps. The first three lines are accompanied by a simple
with right-hand chords on half-beats. The top part in the
hand doubles the voice under the first line, then dips to lower
for the second. In the third line, the left hand
the opening vocal melody by two beats as the second line ends.
0:23 [m. 7]--The fourth
stated twice, as in all stanzas using the A material. The first
statement oscillates between two notes, but includes an octave
(and piano echoes with rolled octaves). The second contains
distinctive “sigh” figures in the vocal line (already introduced
overtly in line 2). Under these, the middle voice in the
hand still has vestiges of the opening downward leaps. The
echoes the sigh figures in a two-bar bridge passage. Despite
full cadence, the vocal and piano lines are questioning, ending a
above the tonic (home key) note.
0:44 [m. 13]--Stanza 2 (B). In its only
the music of B is
B-flat minor (relative to the home key of D-flat), and is somewhat
darker in tone. It begins with the “sigh” figures. The
piano part consists mostly of chords and low octaves on the
but in the third and fourth lines (which are somewhat warmer), the
piano doubles and harmonizes the vocal line. Most of the
line is repeated (without the words “klagt ich”). The final
cadence is again questioning, and includes a turn figure. A
simple piano arpeggio, still in the minor key, leads to the return
1:30 [m. 25]--Stanza 3 (A’). While the vocal
identical to that of stanza 1, the accompaniment is “turned
with the left hand notes now on the half-beats. The piano
in line 3 move up instead of down, and the echoes in the first
statement of line 4 are now higher as a result. The piano
echoing the sigh figures, is the same, but an extra measure is
move the music to the new key of F major for the middle section of
song. There is a brief buildup in this extra measure.
2:15 [m. 38]--Stanza 4 (C). The tempo changes to
vivace,” noticeably faster, and the key is the much brighter F
major. The melody is exuberant, with several leaps and
motion. The accompaniment consists of descending arpeggios
triplet rhythm (three notes to a beat), and echoes the voice in
first two lines. A top voice with a long-short rhythm is
above the arpeggios. No part of the fourth line is repeated,
breaking the pattern of the first (slower) section. A short
one-measure bridge continues the descending arpeggios.
2:36 [m. 48]--Stanza 5 (D). This is the most
harmonically active stanza so far. In the beginning it
minor, but it moves as far afield as A major and F-sharp minor
keys relative to each other). The character is similar to C, and moves at the same
it is more breathless and agitated, rapidly increasing, then
in volume. The right hand of the piano now plays punctuating
upbeat chords, but the left hand figures retain the triplet rhythm
of C off the beat.
ends with a half-cadence in F minor, and another one-measure
continues the accompaniment pattern of the verse, moving back to
major. Again, the fourth line is not repeated.
2:58 [m. 59]--Stanza 6 (C). The C material returns virtually
unchanged, save that the accompaniment pattern of D persists for the first
The original accompaniment returns with the second line.
3:19 [m. 69]--Three
are added to the original bridge, which slows the arpeggios down
in the last measure, eliminates the triplets. The music
back home from F to D-flat major.
3:28 [m. 72]--Stanza 7 (A”). The final return of
opening material restores the left hand to its “on-beat” position,
the vocal line is again unchanged. The right hand, however,
much more decorative, and the triplet rhythm of the middle section
enters at the second line, often going against the grain of the
straight duple rhythm. This is especially apparent in the
figures in the repeat of the last line.
4:04 [m. 82]--The familiar
bridge echoing the “sigh” figures now incorporates the triplet
into the sighs. These are extended an extra measure before
settling to the close in quiet chords.
4:40--END OF SONG [86 mm.]
5. “So willst du des Armen dich gnädig erbarmen?”
then, on a poor man graciously take pity?”). Allegro.
Expanded ternary form (ABB’A). F MAJOR, 2/4 time (Low key D
major). [Later title: Glück
...and one [ring] with this song
the form of written poems.
So willst du des Armen
Dich gnädig erbarmen?
So ist es kein Traum?
Wie rieseln die Quellen,
Wie tönen die Wellen,
Wie rauschet der Baum!
Tief lag ich in bangen
Nun grüßt mich das Licht!
Wie spielen die Strahlen!
Sie blenden und malen
Mein schüchtern Gesicht.
Und soll ich es glauben?
Wird keiner mir rauben
Den köstlichen Wahn?
Doch Träume entschweben,
Nur lieben heißt leben;
Wie frei und wie heiter!
Nicht eile nun weiter,
Den Pilgerstab fort!
Du hast überwunden,
Du hast ihn gefunden,
Den seligsten Ort!
0:00 [m. 1]--Stanza 1 (A). A very brief
lead-in consists of rapidly descending thirds and fourths.
voice almost instantly enters, and at that point the piano right
shifts to a breathless pattern of double notes and chords in a
rhythm, with many repetitions and reiterations. The left
plays mostly solid octaves at a slower pace, often echoing the
“lead-in.” The contour of the accompaniment loosely follows
vocal line, despite clashing with its straight rhythm. The
line itself is exuberant and extroverted. Lines four and
take a brief detour to “sharp keys” (A, D, G) before being
wrenched back to F in the soaring last line, whose words “wie
are repeated. The bridging lead-in from the opening begins
the voice is finished, and is extended two measures to a brief
0:22 [m. 23]--Stanza 2 (B). This stanza is
harmonically unstable and chromatic. The singer is more
as the verse at first suggests a motion to two minor keys (F and
then toward A-flat major/minor. The accompaniment is simply
alternating left and right hand chords and octaves. The last
is repeated, first in E major and then in E-flat, where it comes
cadence. The accompaniment chords continue for three
move back to the point where B
0:42 [m. 46]--Stanza 3 (B’). The first three
the same as in stanza 2 (B),
magically, the third line is repeated in a sudden move back home
F major. The last three lines are very joyous. The
hand responses are now in triplet rhythm, the left hand playing
solid low octaves on the beat. The last line (“Willkommene
Bahn!”) is repeated in longer notes, and the accompaniment moves
repeated triplet chords under both statements of the words.
opening “lead-in” enters before the verse is finished and comes to
half cadence, as after stanza 1.
1:03 [m. 70]--Stanza 4 (A). The last stanza is
the same music as the first. The word “seligsten” is
the last line. The descending “lead-in” does not begin until
vocal line is finished, however, shifting it forward a beat.
is offset by eliminating the last harmonized third of the first
descending patterns. Only a slight change of direction is
to change the half-cadence to a solid full close to end the song.
1:30--END OF SONG [89 mm.]
6. “Wie soll ich die Freude, die Wonne denn tragen?” (“How
endure the joy, how can I then endure the bliss?”).
sostenuto--Poco animato--Vivace, ma non troppo. Large
multi-sectional through-composed form (AA’BCC’DEE’). A MAJOR, 4/4,
and 2/4 time (Low key G major). Later title: Erwartung
Finally granted a personal
he sings this song.
Wie soll ich die Freude,
Die Wonne denn tragen?
Daß unter dem Schlagen
Des Herzens die Seele nicht scheide?
Und wenn nun die Stunden
Der Liebe verschwunden,
Wozu das Gelüste,
In trauriger Wüste
Noch weiter ein lustleeres Leben zu ziehn,
Wenn nirgend dem Ufer mehr Blumen erblühn?
Wie geht mit bleibehangnen Füßen
Die Zeit bedächtig Schritt vor Schritt!
Und wenn ich werde scheiden müssen,
Wie federleicht fliegt dann ihr Tritt!
Schlage, sehnsüchtige Gewalt,
In tiefer, treuer Brust!
Wie Lautenton vorüberhallt,
Entflieht des Lebens schönste Lust.
Ach, wie bald
Bin ich der Wonne mir kaum noch bewußt.
Rausche, rausche weiter fort,
Tiefer Strom der Zeit,
Wandelst bald aus Morgen Heut,
Gehst von Ort zu Ort;
Hast du mich bisher getragen,
Lustig bald, dann still,
Will es nun auch weiter wagen,
Wie es werden will.
Darf mich doch nicht elend achten,
Da die Einz’ge winkt,
Liebe läßt mich nicht verschmachten,
Bis dies Leben sinkt!
Nein, der Strom wird immer breiter,
Himmel bleibt mir immer heiter,
Fröhlichen Ruderschlags fahr’ ich hinab,
Bring’ Liebe und Leben zugleich an das Grab.
One of the biggest and widest ranging of all Brahms’s songs, it
unusual amount of text repetition.
0:00 [m. 1]--A full,
harmonized 4-measure introduction sets up the generally joyous
the song. The left hand plays triplet rhythms against the
two-note figures in the right hand, in a typical Brahms clash of
0:11 [m. 5]--Stanza 1 (A). The singer continues
happy mood of the introduction. Small pauses lend an air of
excitement. Of special note are the figures in the left hand
the piano with their distinctive trills. The triplet rhythm
against them (but the first part of each group of three is a rest,
a note), now in the right hand. After the third line, the
reverse, with the right hand playing trills and the left hand
the triplet rhythm. This alternation happens four times in
succession. The words “dem Schlagen” and “die Seele” are
twice. The verse closes on a half-cadence.
0:24 [m. 11]--The
is repeated (the triplets shifting to the left hand again).
0:33 [m. 15]--Stanza 2 (A’). This begins as had
1, but diverges quickly as the music changes to a minor key
minor, relative to the home key of A major). To deal with
longer stanza, the text repetitions are dispensed with and the
extended by three measures. The alternation between the
triplets and trill figures still happens four times after the
line (now in the new minor key), the last time without the trill,
anticipating the last line. At this last line, the
changes to an ominous left-hand counter-melody in octaves while
right hand plays octaves and chords on the half-beats. This
changes the mood considerably. The accompaniment pattern
continues in a brief two-measure bridge to the next section after
singer comes to a full cadence in F-sharp minor.
0:59 [m. 25]--Stanza 3 (B). The change in
reflects the text graphically. The left hand melody in
continues from the end of the last verse. It illustrates the
“tarrying feet” (the word “bleibehangnen” literally means “laden
lead”). The voice presents a tentative line in dotted
still in the key of F-sharp minor.
(Note: the translation of
first line should read “With what
tarrying feet…” instead of “Which what.”)
1:12 [m. 29]--In the
the third line, the music suddenly changes back to the mood of A. Rather abruptly, the
shifts to F-sharp major (not modulating back to A). The
distinctive figure with the trills is heard first in the right
with triplet rhythms in the left. As in the other verses,
hands switch roles four times. The trills in the right hand
to suggest the “feather-light” step. The last line is
and the music slows slightly as it comes to a half cadence in
1:28 [m. 35]--The tempo
to “Poco sostenuto,” the time signature to 3/4, and the key
is formally changed to F-sharp major (the key of the last stretch
music). A piano interlude introduces these changes with four
measures of “sigh” figures and low bass broken octaves.
1:40 [m. 39]--Stanza 4 (C). The mood has now
completely changed. The 3/4 meter is slow, but has a certain
“swing.” The vocal line continues the sigh figures of the
interlude, as does the piano right hand. The left hand plays
low notes in block and broken octaves. Despite some
inflections, the music remains rooted in F-sharp major. The
“vorüberhallt” is “echoed,” which is in fact what the word
(though “echoes” is translated as a noun, the word is actually
a verb in the original--the translation is quite accurate,
however). The fourth line comes to a satisfying and warm
2:14 [m. 51]--As this
arrives, the music changes somewhat, the piano introducing a
triplet rhythm that alternates between the hands, the right hand
largely harmonized in thirds and sixths. The singer echoes
words “ach, wie bald” in a distinctive downward leap. The
“der Wonne” are also repeated. After another complete
the last two lines are presented again (with “ach, wie bald” and
Wonne” again stated twice in succession). This time they
a half cadence leading to a three-measure interlude that continues
alternation between hands of the slowly “swinging” triplet rhythm.
2:47 [m. 66]--Stanza 5 (C’). The first four
presented to the same music as the previous stanza, at least in
vocal line. The piano is changed, with the left hand now
incorporating the “swinging” triplet rhythm introduced at the end
the last stanza in wide leaps. The words “aus Morgen Heut”
repeated in the spot of the previous “echo,” but the text doesn’t
this gesture as nicely. The words “von Ort” are repeated
the line is shorter than the corresponding line in stanza 4.
3:18 [m. 78]--The
triplet” rhythm now alternates hands as before, but the voice is
heard immediately. The entrance of the fifth line is
“delayed” with no repetition of words. Because there are
lines to set at this point instead of two (as at the analogous
stanza 4), there is no wholesale repetition of text. The
length of the lines also means that the relatively unimportant
“wie es” are the only ones repeated at all (compare the twofold
repetitions of “Ach, wie bald” and “der Wonne” in the
verse). The “delayed” entry of the fifth line also
the relative lack of text repetition here. The vocal line is
changed somewhat at the seventh line, abandoning the downward leap
associated with “ach, wie bald.” The rhythm is suited to the
text, causing slight variations throughout the section. The
comes to a complete cadence as a result of a slight change to the
cadence heard before 2:47 [m. 66].
3:42 [m. 90]--A long
continues the pattern of “swinging triplets” alternating between
until a first weak cadence (after four measures). Then the
triplets in the right hand are changed to “straight” rhythms (two
to a beat). This gives the illusion of a slowing tempo where
really exists. The key is still F-sharp major, with several
inflections of chromatic, or “color” notes. The arrival of
next section, aborting the expected cadence, is rather jarring.
3:59 [m. 98]--Stanza 6,
1-4 (D). Suddenly,
meter changes back to 4/4 and the tempo is close to the original
(marked “Poco animato”). The mood of the A section returns, as do its
gestures, particularly the distinctive left hand figure with the
trills. Here, the chords in triplet rhythm are in the right
and remain there with no alternation. The left hand states
“trill” gesture four times total (including the passage marked at
4:06), twice each under lines 1 and 3. Broken octaves are
under lines 2 and 4. The passage is harmonically unstable,
each line moving to a new key area. Line 1 continues in
minor, changing mode from the previous music. Line 2 shifts
suddenly to D major.
4:06 [m. 102]--Lines 3 and
continue to move away from the “sharp” key areas (F-sharp, A, D)
“flat” ones. Line 3 is analogous to line 1, but the vocal
is different. It is set in G minor, a half-step higher than
1. Similarly, line 4 is the same as line 2, but is a
higher, in E-flat major, quite distant from home. Line 4 is
repeated, and skillfully drawn back down the half-step to D, where
2 was heard, coming quickly from a distant point back toward the
key. This time, there is a subtle inflection toward minor on
word “Leben.” The succeeding 2-measure interlude also shifts
toward minor at the very end.
4:20 [m. 109]--Stanza 6,
5-8 (E). A magical
change brings us finally back home to A major. The tempo is
even faster (“Vivace, ma non troppo”), and the meter is cut in
2/4. 8 measures of interlude set up the new material, with
breathless piano figures shifting between the hands. These
generally four notes or double-notes long, with the first two
4:28 [m. 117]--The voice
over this new piano material. The melody is extroverted and
jubilant, full of leaps and light embellishments. The
groups continue in the piano through the climax at the end of the
(seventh) line, which is somewhat stretched out. Then, for
last line, the accompaniment is again in triplets (and single
which creates an illusion of slowing down. “Liebe und Leben”
then “zugleich” are repeated before the singer reaches a half
cadence. A four-measure interlude in the triplet rhythm
the repetition/expansion of this material (E’).
4:51 [m. 143]--Second full
statement of stanza 6, lines 5-8 (E’).
initial statement of the first three lines (5-7) is the same as at
4:28 [m. 117].
5:05 [m. 159]--The music
diverges from the first statement at 4:28 [m. 117], bringing back
material from the first stanza. The triplet rhythm enters as
before at the last line, but the single notes are abandoned in
full chords. And most importantly, the “trill” figure from
first part of the song returns yet again in the left hand, its
home. Brahms marks the music “animato” at this point.
Rather than moving straight to the last line, the third (seventh)
now excitedly repeated. When the last line enters, its
presentation is greatly expanded. It is stated a total of
times, none of them set the same way. On the first one, the
familiar alternation of the trill and triplet figures between the
is heard again, but this does not continue past the second
5:15 [m. 171]--The triplet
figures move to the left hand before the third statement.
first syllable of “Liebe” is sustained for two measures in this
statement. The clinching final statement rockets
the piano bass shoots downward in octaves--and adds an extra
of the word “zugleich.” The cadence is emphatic, temporarily
arresting the motion, which resumes with a very brief postlude
the last musical phrase of this highly varied song.
5:40--END OF SONG [187 mm.]
7. “War es dir, dem diese Lippen bebten?” (“Was it you for
these lips trembled?”). Lebhaft (Lively)--Animato.
ternary form (AA’BA”). D MAJOR, 3/4 time (Low key B-flat
major). [Later title: Erinnerung
At the tryst he presents the
ring and vows eternal fidelity; they kiss. Back in his
he sings this song.
War es dir, dem diese Lippen bebten,
Dir der dargebotne süße Kuß?
Gibt ein irdisch Leben so Genuß?
Ha! wie Licht und Glanz vor meinen Augen schwebten,
Alle Sinne nach den Lippen strebten!
In den klaren Augen blickte
Sehnsucht, die mir zärtlich winkte,
Alles klang im Herzen wieder,
Meine Blicke sanken nieder,
Und die Lüfte tönten Liebeslieder.
Wie ein Sternenpaar
Glänzten die Augen, die Wangen
Wiegten das goldene Haar,
Blick und Lächeln schwangen
Flügel, und die süßen Worte gar
Weckten das tiefste Verlangen;
O Kuß, wie war dein Mund so brennend rot!
Da starb ich, fand ein Leben erst im schönsten Tod.
0:00 [m. 1]--Stanza 1 (A). No
After a single chord, the singer begins the restless, agitated
which freely mixes steps and leaps. While the right hand
chords doubling the voice, the faster-moving left hand is
notable. Its figures are mainly oscillating neighbor notes
a few low bass notes thrown in), but the distinctive rests on the
part of the third beat in many of these figures increase the
mood projected by the voice.
0:13 [m. 11]--The quieter
line takes a brief harmonic detour to F major. In line 4,
words “wie Licht” are dramatically repeated over a rise in volume
help bring the rest of the verse home using a near repetition of
music of the first two lines. The entire last line is also
repeated to new music with new bass broken octaves, and comes to a
broad cadence where the first syllable of “Lippen” is sustained
five beats. This happens over a syncopation in the
Most of the stanza consists of irregular five- and seven-bar
0:42 [m. 34]--Stanza 2 (A’). A one-bar
leads to the first two lines, which are rather static and subdued
comparison to what has gone before. The restless left hand
figures remain anchored to a low D, whereas in stanza 1 they
hovered around a high and more harmonically active A. The
line tries to move to new harmonies, but the static left hand
undermines this. The word “zärtlich” is
repeated. The accompaniment pattern continues in
0:59 [m. 47]--From this
the last three lines of stanza 2 follow the last three lines of
1 exactly, using the music from 0:13 [m. 11]. The strange
“hybrid” construction means that the new material in the first two
lines of stanza 2 could be called a small “b” section and the last three
abbreviated a’. The
words “alles” and “meine Blicke” are repeated to compensate for
different poetic meter, and the word “sanken” is stretched over
notes. The last line is repeated in its entirety, as in
1. The first syllable of “Liebeslieder” is set to the long
1:29 [m. 70]--A quiet
interlude similar to the beginning of stanza 2, with the left-hand
figures on the low D. Like many phrases in both stanzas, it
irregular five-bar phrase.
1:35 [m. 75]--Stanza 3,
1-6 (B). The change
poetic structure inspires a change in the music. The section
set in the key of G major and marked “Animato.” Although the
motion is quick and light, the music is quiet and even
Similar to the first two lines of stanza 2, this quiet music sets
reference to the eyes. The accompaniment is simpler,
of chords on beats 2 and 3 of each bar. The phrases are more
regular, all in four bars until the last phrase is stretched to
with the elongation of the word “Verlangen” using a turn
The five phrases only approximately correspond to the six lines of
text. The third and fourth phrases hint at A minor and
a dissonant “diminished seventh” on “gar.” A three-bar
follows the last elongated phrase.
2:02 [m. 99]--Unexpectedly,
4-6 of the stanza are repeated, to nearly the same three phrases.
The only variation is on the three notes beginning with “tiefste,”
which continue to move up by steps instead of skipping down to the
note in the word “Verlangen.” As a result, this long note is
approached by a single downward octave leap. The three-bar
interlude is reduced to two, which suddenly increase in volume and
return home to D major, leading to the abbreviated return of A.
2:22 [m. 114 (113)]--Stanza
lines 7-8 (A”). The
“O Kuß” establish the mood and material of A again, and from “wie war
Mund” (with “dein Mund” repeated), the music is analogous to a
just after the beginning of line 4 of stanzas 1 and 2. This
appropriate, as the music from that point also set two
Instead of an entire line being repeated, the words “ein Leben”
schönsten Tod” are repeated in succession, including a third
statement of the word “schönsten.” Although the music
follows the melody and harmony closely, the lengths and placements
certain notes are changed to fit the meter of the text. The
syllable of the third “schönsten” is set to the long note.
NOTE: This guide
what is sung in the recording. Some
editions repeat “o Kuß” rather than “dein Mund,” shifting
text so that a large descent is on “o Kuß, wie war” instead
“wie war dein Mund.”
2:46 [m. 132]--The piano
postlude is very similar to the interlude at 1:29 [m. 70],
two measures. Like that interlude, it is quiet. It
the end, finally putting the brakes on the general exuberance and
restlessness of the song.
3:11--END OF SONG [138 mm.]
8. “Wir müssen uns trennen, geliebtes Saitenspiel” (“We
part, beloved lute”). Andante--Allegro--Andante.
ternary form (ABA’CDC’D’A”). G-FLAT MAJOR, 4/4 and cut time
[2/2] (Low key E-flat major). [Later title: Entschluss
Threatened with an unwanted
bridegroom, Magelone asks Peter to run off with her to his
homeland. Before meeting her he sings this song.
Wir müssen uns trennen,
Zeit ist es, zu rennen
Nach dem fernen, erwünschten Ziel.
Ich ziehe zum Streite,
Zum Raube hinaus,
Und hab’ ich die Beute,
Dann flieg’ ich nach Haus.
Im rötlichen Glanze
Entflieh’ ich mit ihr,
Es schützt uns die Lanze,
Der Stahlharnisch hier.
Kommt, liebe Waffenstücke,
Zum Scherz oft angetan,
Beschirmet jetzt mein Glücke
Auf dieser neuen Bahn!
Ich werfe mich rasch in die Wogen,
Ich grüße den herrlichen Lauf,
Schon mancher ward niedergezogen,
Der tapfere Schwimmer bleibt obenauf.
Ha! Lust zu vergeuden
Das edele Blut!
Zu schützen die Freude,
Mein köstliches Gut!
Nicht Hohn zu erleiden,
Wem fehlt es an Mut?
Senke die Zügel,
Spanne die Flügel,
Daß über ferne Hügel
Uns schon der Morgen lacht!
0:00 [m. 1]--A short piano
introduction sets up low, slow-moving, and slightly dissonant
figures in the right hand, with syncopated bass notes after the
in the left.
0:11 [m. 3]--Stanza 1 (A). The melody is smooth
subdued, but wide-ranging. The right-hand accompaniment is
steady, consisting of rising four-note groups evoking the lute
first and third notes of each are harmonized with a note
The left hand notes after the beats continue from the
the first two measures echo the harmonies of the introduction.
0:21 [m. 5]--The last two
of the stanza move steadily downward, with some chromatic notes
introducing a motion to the related key of D-flat (which is also
lowest note). The last line (without the word “nach”) is
repeated, with the vocal line reaching upward as the music subtly
shifts to the dark G-flat and D-flat to the brighter and rather
F and B-flat.
0:40 [m. 9]--Stanza 2 (B). The second stanza
in B-flat minor. It is characterized by the continuing sigh
figures in the left hand with fast “drum-roll” figures in the
right. The sighs and drum rolls switch hands every
The vocal line is very rhythmic, and echoes the piano’s drum rolls
long-short figures. The last two lines move the music back
home key of G-flat. There is a one-bar transition that
last vocal measure.
1:00 [m. 14]--Stanza 3 (A’). The vocal line
that of stanza 1 closely, including the motion to D-Flat, F, and
B-flat. The difference is in the text repetition.
the fourth line is shorter than that of stanza 1, the words “die
from the third line are repeated before it is heard, both in its
and second statements. There are also some small differences
declamation and rhythm. The second statement begins as in
1 (reaching upward), but changes direction and settles on an
pause. The accompaniment for the stanza is not the same as
of stanza 1. It continues the “drum roll” effects from
in the right hand against more steady motion in the left.
last “drum-roll” coincides with the pause (on F) in the vocal line
completes the smaller three-part form of the first part.
1:31 [m. 20]--Stanza 4 (C). After the expectant
a change of tempo to Allegro and the reduction of the 4/4 meter to
time [2/2] heralds the arrival of the middle section of the larger
ternary form. Like stanza 2, the key of B-flat follows
from the pause, but now it is B-flat major, complete with an
key signature change. The piano right hand, in chords and
octaves, introduces the basic short-long-short rhythm beginning on
upbeat. The left hand typically enters during the longer
hand notes. The pattern continues when the voice enters
measures. The melody is light and joyful, incorporating
(long-short) rhythms within the larger short-long-short
The voice breaks off suddenly after hinting at a move to G minor,
the piano gains strength and continues to a half-cadence in
1:45 [m. 32]--Stanza 5 (D)--The vocal line now rises
steadily and with ever more exuberance. The last line,
the words “der tapfere Schwimmer,” reaches another half-cadence in
B-flat, but this one is filled with tension, reaching an expectant
pause on a high note. The piano accompaniment for the stanza
introduces full chords in a distinctive triplet rhythm (three
a beat), but with the first note of each triplet absent, replaced
either with a rest or with a tie from the last group. These
played against the continuing straight two-note rhythm in the left
and the voice. They continue until the pause.
2:05 [m. 49]--Stanza 6,
1-4 (C’)--The piano part
follows the notes and harmony of stanza 4, but now incorporates
triplet rhythms of stanza 5 in both hands (but the first note of
group is now present). After the piano plays its lead-in
triplet rhythm using broken octaves, the vocal line follows that
stanza 4 quite closely, but does away with the dotted rhythms
of the shorter poetic lines. It now follows the more
“short-long-short” pattern throughout, contrasting with the
the piano (which comes to the same half-cadence in B-flat after
voice breaks off).
2:18 [m. 61]--Stanza 6,
5-6 (D’)--Because of the
shorter lines, a full statement of the two lines corresponds
the first line of stanza 5 (including the triplet rhythm with
first notes in the piano), but adds two notes to the end.
lines are repeated, corresponding to the second line of stanza 5,
before that, Brahms shifts the harmony so that the line is sung a
half-step lower than in stanza 5. This causes the line to
the key of F-sharp (the same as G-flat, notated differently--they
“enharmonic” keys). This is a very clever way to return to
home key. The last two musical lines of stanza 5 are cut,
piano continues with a descending transition firmly establishing
F-sharp. The music slows and settles down as the triplet
comes to an end.
home key (now notated as G-flat), Brahms now restores the 4/4
restates the two-bar introduction from the opening of the song for
abbreviated return (consisting only of A”)
of the opening section.
2:46 [m. 74]--Stanza 7 (A”)--Up through the fourth
vocal line matches that of stanzas 1 and 3, moving to the low
D-flat. The accompaniment is similar to that of stanza 1,
rising four-note groups are split between the hands. Each
plays a three-note figure, the right hand entering as the left
plays its second note (and the left hand resting as the right hand
plays its last note) so that the second and third notes of each
are played by both hands. This pattern remains steady
stanza, and the previous left hand after-beat notes are obviously
3:07 [m. 78]--Because the
stanza has five lines instead of four, the fifth line takes the
of the repetitions in stanzas 1 and 3. The music is quite
different. The line is set to a soaring, slowly moving vocal
now returns quickly to G-flat after a striking but short diversion
B. It is stated twice. The second statement begins on
syncopated dissonance and is stretched even further, repeating and
lengthening the words “der Morgen” before a closing cadence.
3:30 [m. 82]--The piano
postlude changes the preceding pattern slightly. The right
still plays three-note groups (resting on the first note of the
pattern), but the left hand now plays with the first, third and
notes of the pattern instead of the first, second, and third,
the right hand alone on the second. The left hand
wide leaps after its initial (now longer) notes of the
The pattern continues for three measures, introducing several
dissonances before the last questioning cadence.
4:05--END OF SONG [84 mm.]
9. “Ruhe, Süßliebchen, im Schatten”
(“Rest, my love, in the shade”). Langsam--Animato.
strophic form with refrain on the last three lines of each
strope. A-FLAT MAJOR, 6/8 time (Low key F-sharp
major). [Later title: Schlaflied
In the course of their escape,
rest in a forest and he sings this song.
Ruhe, Süßliebchen, im Schatten
Der grünen, dämmernden Nacht:
Es säuselt das Gras auf den Matten,
Es fächelt und kühlt dich der Schatten
Und treue Liebe wacht.
Schlafe, schlaf ein,
Leiser rauscht der Hain,
Ewig bin ich dein.
Schweigt, ihr versteckten Gesänge,
Und stört nicht die süßeste Ruh’!
Es lauschet der Vögel Gedränge,
Es ruhen die lauten Gesänge,
Schließ, Liebchen, dein Auge zu.
Schlafe, schlaf ein,
Im dämmernden Schein,
Ich will dein Wächter sein.
Murmelt fort, ihr Melodien,
Rausche nur, du stiller Bach.
Sprechen in den Melodien,
Zarte Träume schwimmen nach.
Durch den flüsternden Hain
Schwärmen goldne Bienelein
Und summen zum Schlummer dich ein.
Outside of the cycle, this song is considered one of the three
Lullabies” (the others are Op. 49, No. 4 and Op. 91, No. 2).
There are superficial similarities with Op. 91, No. 2.
0:00 [m. 1]--The piano
introduction anticipates the “refrain” that will be heard at the
each verse, a gently rising figure whose fourth note is
dissonant. The left hand begins the song a beat before the
full bar and continues in a gentle syncopation (playing the same
on beats three and six of each bar). The chord is the highly
anticipatory and unstable dominant seventh, which wants to pull to
home chord, but avoids doing so.
0:11 [m. 5]--Stanza
1. The vocal line is a gently rocking, generally descending
melody. While the right hand plays simple chords and notes
main beats, the left hand continues its gentle syncopation on the
dissonant chord. After the verse begins, the chord finally
changes and loses its dissonant character, but the low bass note
remains the same. The middle note of the chord moves down,
back up, then gradually down.
0:26 [m. 11]--From the
line, preceded by a two-measure bridge, the bass note begins to
oscillate, at first only moving a half-step above the previously
constant low note, but gradually incorporating a few other
From this point, the bass is no longer in chords and consists of
notes and octaves, but the syncopated, constant reiterations on
and 6 remain. Lines three and four are identically set and
to the remote key of C-flat major, but line five, in a slow
comes back to the territory of the home key, while avoiding a full
close there. The target key is the same pitch (E-flat)
the pervasive bass notes of the opening.
0:55 [m. 23]--At the point
the cadence, the unstable dominant seventh chords from the
return, as does the music of the introduction. It leads to
actual refrain (lines 6-8 of the stanza). The voice echoes
piano’s rising line, after which the piano left hand again moves
other chords and the right hand rises higher. The following
is a downward near inversion of the first line, again with a
dissonant fourth note suggesting the key of D-flat. Rising
higher, the piano becomes somewhat excited.
1:17 [m. 33]--The last
again abandons chords in favor of octaves in the left hand.
a descending figure, set higher than the preceding line and moving
entirely by steps and toward G-flat. The following bridge is
quite static and begins to settle down. The line is repeated
bit lower, starting on a long note held over a bar line and moving
to A-flat. It includes an extra reiteration of the word
and an even longer note on the word “bin.” This descending
leads to the first full cadence in the home key. Only at the
point of that cadence is the constant syncopated rhythm in the
hand finally abandoned.
1:37 [m. 41]--An extremely
tender, rocking interlude begins with the vocal cadence and firmly
finally) establishes the home key while leading to the next
strophe. The bass, moving between higher chords or fifths
octaves, is no longer syncopated.
1:59 [m. 49]--Stanza
2. The syncopation in the bass is now replaced by
chords and single notes in both hands (the right hand usually has
rest before each group until the third line, where it introduces
and vocal line doubling). The structure of the vocal line is
similar to that of strophe 1 with some rhythmic variation, but the
are different. It begins in the key of F minor (relative to
A-flat), moving to G-flat major in the second line and back to F
in the third. The fourth line reaches a half-cadence in
minor (relative to G-flat major, just heard). A shift to
line 5 (which now moves upward before leaping downward), leads to
same cadence on the note E-flat and a return to the refrain.
2:40 [m. 67]--The refrain
virtually the same as at 0:55 [m. 23], with a nearly identical
line and right hand. Even the left hand introduces the same
harmonies as before (including the pervasive dominant seventh at
beginning), as well as the former syncopation. The
that the chords of the left hand are now broken, in keeping with
oscillating motion of the preceding music. Now the left hand
plays on beats 2, 3, 5, and 6, holding one or two notes over the
beats, 1 and 4. This pattern continues throughout the
refrain. Obviously the words are different, and the rhythm
slightly altered to match the declamation.
3:01 [m. 77]--The last
one syllable longer than that of stanza 1 at 1:17 [m. 33], so on
second repetition, no word is reiterated. Instead, the first
“ich” is stretched over two notes. The first syllable of
“Wächter” gets the long note.
3:20 [m. 85]--The tender
interlude from 1:37 [m. 41] is repeated, but with flowing broken
in the left hand.
3:39 [m. 93]--Stanza
3. Very suddenly, the tempo speeds up (“Animato”) and the
is strikingly bumped up a half-step to A major (complete with a
signature change to three sharps). The accompaniment is now
upward-thrusting arpeggios, which give way to wave-like figures in
left hand under right hand chords playing with the first two lines
also bridging them. These are quite different from their
in the first two stanzas, and consist of forward-thrusting,
lines that finally settle at the end of line 2 with a repetition
3:51 [m. 100]--The
arpeggios return for the last two lines and remain in force
rest of the stanza and most of the refrain. The top voice of
piano, after a one-bar anticipation, doubles the voice in line 3,
diverges. The settings of lines 3-5 return to the familiar
descending lines of the first two verses. Line 3 shifts
dramatically to the bright C major, leaving it to line 4 (where
signature changes back to 4 flats) to return home to A-flat
major. Line 5 is more decorative and set higher than in the
two verses, but comes to the same cadence on the note E-flat as
4:07 [m. 111]--The final
statement of the refrain continues the animated motion of the
verse. The former syncopated block chords (including the
dissonant dominant seventh) are now rolled upward in the pattern
preceding music. The piano line, imitated by the voice,
the same outline and shape. The rhythm is more animated to
accommodate the wordier text of these lines. Before the
repetition of the last line, the thrusting arpeggios become slower
more stretched out, and the music becomes softer. That
(which reiterates the words “zum Schlummer”) returns to the quiet
character of the first two verses as it reaches its cadence.
4:40 [m. 129]--In a sort
“coming around full circle,” the tender interlude, now a postlude,
returns to the left hand syncopation of the opening (2 notes,
octaves, played on beats 3 and 6). In its first two
the left hand rhythm had not been syncopated. Since strophe
mostly straight rhythm, even in the refrain, this postlude seems
a bit of a role reversal and helps to close and unify the
It is only briefly extended and stretched for the final chords,
left hand remaining syncopated until the end. Brahms
that it should gradually and steadily slow down, since the
tempo of strophe 3 is still in force as it begins.
5:25--END OF SONG [138 mm.]
tönet denn, schäumende Wellen” (Despair--“Resound, then,
waves”). Allegro. Expanded ternary form (AA’BA).
MINOR, 3/4 time (Low key A minor).
A raven flies off with the three
rings while Magelone sleeps and, trying to recover them when
into the sea, Peter is blown far from shore in a small boat; he
So tönet denn, schäumende Wellen,
Und windet euch rund um mich her!
Mag Unglück doch laut um mich bellen,
Erbost sein das grausame Meer!
Ich lache den stürmenden Wettern,
Verachte den Zorngrimm der Flut;
O, mögen mich Felsen zerschmettern!
Denn nimmer wird es gut.
Nicht klag’ ich, und mag ich nun scheitern,
Im wäßrigen Tiefen vergehn!
Mein Blick wird sich nie mehr erheitern,
Den Stern meiner Liebe zu sehn.
So wälzt euch bergab mit Gewittern,
Und raset, ihr Stürme, mich an,
Daß Felsen an Felsen zersplittern!
Ich bin ein verlorener Mann.
0:00 [m. 1]--The piano
introduction sets up the character of the song. The fast,
turbulent arpeggio and scale figures of the right hand are played
against starkly syncopated octaves in the left.
0:06 [m. 5]--Stanza 1 (A). While remaining
and intense, the piano arpeggios become quieter and basically only
upward now, while the left hand usually plays after the
The first line of the stanza is a rather broad, arching
After another measure echoing the end of the phrase, the second
sung to a similar, but less arching phrase that ventures
toward B minor. The second line is repeated to another
downward moving phrase, without the one-measure break and moving
0:20 [m. 15]--The third
introduces a new rhythmic figure in triplets, heard in full chord
harmony and bass octaves in the piano, and then taken up by the
voice. The line is set twice to a pair of two-measure
(shorter than those of the first two lines), the second higher
first. The triplet rhythm continues in the piano under the
line, which is stretched to five measures by a longer-breathed
descending line and the punctuating repetition at the cadence of
words “das grausame Meer.” (under which the triplets slow down to
0:34 [m. 23]--At the vocal
cadence, the piano introduction is repeated with the left hand
syncopation placed in a higher octave and sounding somewhat more
0:38 [m. 27]--Stanza 2 (A’)--The stanza is an
version of stanza 1. The first two lines are set to
phrases similar to the third line of stanza 1, with the triplet
in the voice. The piano, however, continues with the faster
figures in regular rhythm rather than introducing the full chord
harmony heard at 0:20. The stanza suggests the key of F
these two lines.
0:44 [m. 31]--The third
set in a very similar manner to that of stanza 1, and with similar
harmony, but it is not repeated at the higher level. The
of the fourth line begins like the third-line repetition in stanza
but quickly turns to the music of that stanza’s fourth line and is
same length. The stanza effortlessly moves to the same
cadence as stanza 1. Because line four is shorter in this
the words “denn nimmer” are repeated at first, and then the entire
is stated again.
0:55[m. 37]--The music of
introduction is heard again, this time with the hands reversed,
running arpeggios and scales in the left and the syncopated
the right. It begins as an exact reversal, but as the
ending approaches, it is changed and extended for a modulation to
key, with the running figures remaining in the left hand.
music becomes quiet as the key changes.
1:04 [m. 43]--Stanza 3 (B)--This verse is quieter and
restrained. The piano left hand moves in smooth
arpeggios while the right remains in the regular straight (duple)
rhythm. The vocal line, entering after two measures, is
moving and is characterized by “sigh” figures. The stanza
in the dark key of A-flat minor (but with the four-flat key
of A-flat major).
1:18 [m. 51]--From the
line, the stanza moves to major, initially suggesting D-flat, but
approaching a cadence back in A-flat. The third line is very
expressive and more hopeful, including a sustained, rising vocal
line. The fourth line transfers the triplets to the right
harmonizing above the voice. The “straight” rhythm
the left hand with distinct climbing figures The singer
and settles before the piano slows down and moves to the implied
1:37 [m. 58]--The agitated
music and tempo of the introduction suddenly return. It is
similar to the previous statements, but it begins in A-flat and
move back home to C minor. It is extended by a measure,
maximizing the tension before the return of the A music.
1:44 [m. 64]--Stanza 4 (A)--The music is virtually
to that of stanza 1 with minor adjustments for textual
1:57 [m. 73]--The third
introduces the rhythmic triplet figure, as at 0:20 [m. 15].
pattern of text repetition is the same, with the words “ein
Mann” repeated at the end.
2:13 [m. 81]--At the final
vocal cadence, the introduction music is heard a last time, with
arpeggios now extended higher and then reaching to the lowest
of the keyboard, slowing as a final, emphatic chord is approached.
2:31--END OF SONG [84 mm.]
11. “Wie schnell verschwindet so Licht als Glanz” (“How
disappear light and radiance”). Etwas langsam (Rather
slowly). Modified strophic form with bridge
MINOR, 3/8 time (Also F minor in low key edition).
[Later title: Trauer
Magelone rides on sadly and goes
live in the hut of an old shepherd and his wife; she sings this
Wie schnell verschwindet
So Licht als Glanz,
Der Morgen findet
Verwelkt den Kranz,
Der gestern glühte
In aller Pracht,
Denn er verblühte
In dunkler Nacht.
Es schwimmt die Welle
Des Lebens hin,
Und färbt sich helle,
Hat’s nicht Gewinn;
Die Sonne neiget,
Die Röte flieht,
Der Schatten steiget
Und Dunkel zieht.
So schwimmt die Liebe
Zu Wüsten ab,
Ach, daß sie bliebe
Bis an das Grab!
Doch wir erwachen
Zu tiefer Qual:
Es bricht der Nachen,
Es löscht der Strahl.
Vom schönen Lande
Zum öden Strande,
Wo um uns Nacht.
0:00 [m. 1]--A
wonderful piano introduction establishes the musical material and
the phrase structure of the song. A melancholy two-bar
line is repeated with the first note inflected upward. These
answered by a consequent four-bar phrase with rich, chromatic
ending on a half-close.
0:19 [m. 9]--Strophe 1 (A). The strophe sets two
stanzas of the poem. The setting of the first stanza matches
piano introduction closely (without the upward inflection on the
line), coming to the same half-close. One line is set to
two-bar phrase, and two to the four-bar phrase. The piano
hand moves mostly in octaves, the right hand in slow chords.
0:38 [m. 17]--The setting
the poem’s second stanza also follows the 2+2+4 measure phrase
structure, but the voice is less active, the piano taking the more
flowing line in beautiful double notes (thirds). The first
phrases are similar, but the second is set a third higher.
four-measure phrase features sets of three-note figures that leap
then up. There are three of these figures, moving
downward. The entire stanza moves away from the home key,
with on a very warm D-flat major.
0:57 [m. 25]--A two-bar
interlude reestablishes F minor and the opening gesture.
1:01 [m. 27]--Strophe 2 (A’). This strophe only
one stanza (the third), but cleverly reaches the same length of
first strophe. The first two lines are set to the same
phrases, but the second includes the upward inflection of the
introduction. The third line matches the opening two
the four-bar phrase from the introduction and first stanza.
fourth line, however, rather than approaching the half-close,
the third line a half-step lower, resulting in two additional
phrases instead of a four-bar phrase. The third and fourth
are then repeated completely to a new four-bar phrase,
the “down-up” motion from the end of the second stanza and coming
full cadence in the home key.
1:29 [m. 39]--The piano
this last new four-bar phrase. If this interlude is
part of strophe 2, then strophe 2 is the same length as strophe 1,
despite only setting one stanza and only repeating half of it.
1:38 [m. 43]--Bridge (B). Shifting to the
of the home key (F), the music reaches a very tender and quiet
passage. The first two lines of the poem’s fourth stanza are
to a sweetly descending four-bar phrase, extended by the piano
reaches a very low bass) to six bars. The last two lines
dramatic harmonic shift to D-flat (the key heard at the end of
1). After their two-bar piano extension, the piano plays an
additional four bars (a total of ten measures, six in the piano),
returning to the home key and the melancholy mood. The piano
measures and the vocal measures each total eight, making the
bridge the same length as the other strophes, though setting only
stanza with no repetition.
2:15 [m. 59]--Strophe 3 (A”). Like strophe 1, it
two poetic stanzas (the fifth and sixth). While generally
following strophe 1 closely, it does incorporate the upward
on the second line as heard in the piano introduction and strophe
2. The setting of the fifth stanza comes to the familiar
half-close, but the vocal line reaches lower. The
is new and more active, with descending figures passed between the
right and left hands, sometimes in double notes (mostly thirds).
2:31 [m. 67]--The setting
the sixth stanza is close to that of the second, but now the
participates in the flowing line and thirds previously heard only
the piano for the first two lines. This is the emotional
of the song, indicated by an increase in volume. The last
lines gradually return to the previous vocal phrase, but the piano
hand continues the more active motion in broken octaves. As
before, the stanza moves to D-flat major. The piano extends
verse an extra bar as the music settles down.
2:50 [m. 76]--The two-bar
interlude from 0:57 [m. 25] is played, reestablishing F minor.
2:55 [m. 78]--Strophe 4 (A’). The strophe,
seventh and final stanza of the poem, matches strophe 2 exactly,
the last two lines repeated as before. The full cadence in
home key is again reached.
3:26 [m. 90]--The piano
the last four-bar phrase, as at 1:29 [m. 39], and it serves as a
postlude, with fuller harmonies in the last two chords.
structure of this song is complex, the emotional affect is that of
straightforward and poignant lament.
3:44--END OF SONG [93 mm.]
12. “Muß es eine Trennung geben” (“Must there be a
parting”). Poco Andante. Modified strophic form.
MINOR, 6/8 time (Low key E minor). [Later title: Trennung
Peter is found by Moors, who
to the Sultan; he sings this song
Muß es eine Trennung geben,
Die das treue Herz zerbricht?
Nein, dies nenne ich nicht leben,
Sterben ist so bitter nicht.
Hör’ ich eines Schäfers Flöte,
Härme ich mich inniglich,
Seh’ ich in die Abendröte,
Denk’ ich brünstiglich an dich.
Gibt es denn kein wahres Lieben?
Muß denn Schmerz und Trennung sein?
Wär’ ich ungeliebt geblieben,
Hätt’ ich doch noch Hoffnungsschein.
Aber so muß ich nun klagen:
Wo ist Hoffnung, als das Grab?
Fern muß ich mein Elend tragen,
Heimlich bricht das Herz mir ab.
0:00 [m. 1]--Stanza
A one-measure prelude establishes the sadly flowing downward
arpeggios passed between hands that characterize the piano
accompaniment for most of the song. They are quiet, but
agitated. Each is introduced with a low bass note. The
vocal line is characterized by a long note followed by a rising
in each of the four lines, all of which are set to three-measure
phrases. A characteristic embellishment is the anticipation
the note before the second syllable of “geben,” and another is the
figure on “Herz.” The second line comes to a half cadence.
0:20 [m. 8]--The third
the strophe is the same as the first, but set a step higher, in A
minor, subtly approached from the half cadence of line 2.
fourth line returns to G in an equally subtle manner, reaching
than before, but the music is now in major. The harmony
a close on a G major chord, but the voice finishes on the note B,
third above, lending the phrase a questioning character.
0:35 [m. 13]--At the vocal
cadence, the piano echoes the last six notes of the fourth line in
harmony, the arpeggios being transferred entirely to the left
hand. These echoes are in longer note values, some of them
syncopated. This allows the three-measure phrase to be
(the first overlapping with the last bar of the vocal
The echoes remain in major, with minor-key inflections in the
0:44 [m. 2]--Stanza
This is set to the same music as stanza 1, and Brahms indicates
with repeat signs. The closing interlude after stanza 1
the one-measure prelude. Everything, including that closing
interlude, is included in the repeat signs except for the first,
1:25 [m. 16]--Stanza
Although it contrasts with the preceding verses, it uses the same
material and even retains the three-measure phrases. The
line begins as before, but the harmonies quickly move toward the
E-flat major. The second line begins “early,” not allowing
first to complete its third measure. This allows the words
“muß denn Schmerz” to be repeated. The word “Schmerz”
therefore takes the long note where the line “should” have
This line varies significantly from the preceding verses, and
over a crescendo to the song’s climax.
1:39 [m. 22]--The last two
lines of the verse are quite surprising. Both of them begin
“early,” as had the second, and introduce new material, with long
being held across bar lines. The “surprise” is in the piano,
which suddenly abandons the pervasive downward arpeggios and plays
main opening melody, harmonized in thirds while the left hand
reiterates the note D in the third phrase and G in the
The phrases are harmonically active, the third sounding as if it
moving back home to G minor, but the fourth taking a diversion
to the related C minor. In both cases, the piano completes
three-bar phrase. The third line is the climax of the song,
the fourth is a sort of echo, completing the bleak thought.
1:58 [m. 28]--Stanza
It follows stanza 3 with no interlude other than the piano’s
of the last three-bar phrase. It is essentially the same as
first and second stanzas (strophes), with a subtle difference at
beginning. Although the vocal line is exactly the same from
outset, the piano arpeggios, re-entering after their only
retain the harmony of the preceding C minor from the foregoing
first, only matching the previous strophes in the third
The motion from C minor back to G minor is thus smoothly handled
the beginning of the verse, and the vocal line easily matches this
2:30 [m. 39]--As at 0:35
13], the vocal cadence introduces the “echo” in the piano of the
six notes in harmony. However, at the third of these (the
measure), the voice overlaps it with a repetition of the entire
line. The first three notes are a half-step lower,
return to minor. But the last six are now stated in the
note values, as they had been in the piano. The first of
arrives with the last note of the piano phrase. The piano
continues the pattern, though, with the chords now more directly
harmonizing with the voice. The second of these last notes
of the entire phrase) makes another hint at minor before the last
notes again establish the major mode. The voice includes a
“hemiola,” or implied 3/4 measure. The final vocal phrase
its strangely questioning character. The longer notes
to four measures, for a total of five with the first piano measure
before the “overlap.”
2:44 [m. 43]--The piano
postlude, arriving with and overlapping the vocal cadence,
the pervasive arpeggios, moving steadily downward and continuing
waver between major and minor before major is finally settled upon
the end. It is essentially another three-measure phrase,
final chord added in a last extra measure.
3:10--END OF SONG [46 mm.]
zaudert dein irrender Fuß?” (Sulima--“My love, where tarries
your wandering [wrongly-treading] foot [feet]?”). Zart,
(Tenderly, secretively). Vivace. Large two-part
form (AAB form in each strophe). E MAJOR, 2/4 time (Low key
C major). [Later
title: Lockung (Allurement)].
After nearly two years, Sulima,
Sultan’s daughter, asks him to run away with her and he agrees,
on the chance of reaching home again. Repenting, he sets
alone in a small boat as Sulima sings this song in the distance.
Geliebter, wo zaudert
Dein irrender Fuß?
Die Nachtigall plaudert
Von Sehnsucht und Kuß.
Es flüstern die Bäume
Im goldenen Schein,
Es schlüpfen mir Träume
Zum Fenster hinein.
Ach! kennst du das Schmachten
Der klopfenden Brust?
Dies Sinnen und Trachten
Voll Qual und voll Lust?
Beflügle die Eile
Und rette mich dir,
Bei nächtlicher Weile
Entfliehn wir von hier.
Die Segel, sie schwellen,
Die Furcht ist nur Tand:
Dort, jenseit den Wellen
Ist väterlich Land.
Die Heimat entfliehet,
So fahre sie hin!
Die Liebe, sie ziehet
Gewaltig den Sinn.
Horch! wollüstig klingen
Die Wellen im Meer,
Sie hüpfen und springen
Und sollten sie klagen?
Sie rufen nach dir!
Sie wissen, sie tragen
Die Liebe von hier.
Note: The first
the song (a direct translation would be “beloved man”) and the
character of Sulima suggest that the song should be sung by a
however, the entire cycle is usually taken by one singer, usually
man, reflecting Peter’s voice in most of the poems.
0:00 [m. 1]--The piano
introduction is rather long. It consists of three phrases,
first two shorter and identical, and the third more varied and
than the first two combined. This reflects the structure of
large strophe. The first two phrases introduce the playful,
skipping dotted rhythm present in the accompaniment (and the
much of the song. The third, longer phrase introduces the
“color” notes (usually flattened a half-step from where they are
home key--an inflection toward the minor) that appear throughout
song, graphically suggesting the exoticism associated with Peter’s
captivity and the character of Sulima. The music finally
on a repeated note (B), preparing the entry of the voice.
0:09 [m. 12]--Stanza 1 (A). The vocal line
the playful, skipping dotted rhythm of the introduction, which
continues in the piano. The persistence of this rhythm also
conveys a sense of restlessness or impatience. The “color”
are noticeable, particularly when the last line is repeated in a
slowly drawn concluding phrase. A short, vamp-like interlude
0:20 [m. 12]--Stanza 2 (A). A repetition of the
of stanza 1, indicated with a repeat sign. The last line is
course repeated to the slower phrase, and the “vamp” is heard
0:31 [m. 26]--Stanza 3 (B). The longer section
rounding out the strophe begins. Stanza 3 is set to a
rising line, still in the persistent skipping dotted rhythm.
top notes of the phrases are flattened “color” notes. The
line is NOT repeated.
0:37 [m. 34]--Stanza 4 (B continued). This
rounds out the strophe. It moves generally downward, coming
opposite direction from stanza 3. “Color” notes are heard at
end of lines 1 and 2. Lines 3 and 4 leap gradually downward
(chromatically, by half-step). Lines 3 and 4 are repeated as
clinching, climactic phrase that rises again and is more drawn out
the end. Under this repetition, the left hand finally
from the persistent “skipping” rhythm for a strong descent in
0:47 [m. 47]--The long
introduction from the beginning is repeated.
0:56 [m. 58]--Stanza 5 (A). Repetition of the
stanzas 1 and 2, with the last line repeated and the vamp-like
1:07 [m. 58]--Stanza 6 (A). Repetition of the
stanzas 1, 2, and 5 (indicated with a repeat sign from the end of
stanza 5), with the last line repeated and the vamp-like
1:17 [m. 72]--Stanza 7 (B’). Varied statement of
music of stanza 3. Lines 1 and 2 are the same, but the
lines 3 and 4 (not the rhythm or general direction) is subtly
to lend more of a “minor” flavor.
1:24 [m. 80]--Stanza 8 (B’ continued). A mostly
unchanged repetition of the music from stanza 4, with the
lines 3 and 4 over a strong “straight” rhythm descent in the left
hand. There is a very slight alteration under the first
of the word “Liebe,” (analogous to the second syllable of
in stanza 4) where the “color” note enters a beat later in the
1:33 [m. 93]--The long
introduction begins as in the interlude between the large strophes
0:47 [m. 47]), but changes direction halfway through to settle
a quiet, but still playful ending. The pervasive dotted
remains in force to the end. A remarkable aspect of this
its complete lack of any departure from the home key (the bright E
major) other than the isolated “color” notes. There is no
1:49--END OF SONG [104 mm.]
14. “Wie froh und frisch mein Sinn sich hebt”
(“How happy and fresh my thoughts soar”). Lebhaft
Rondo form (ABACA). G MAJOR, 3/4 (9/8) time (Low key E
major). [Later title: Neuer
Sinn (Fresh Thoughts)].
As his voyage gets underway, he
Wie froh und frisch mein Sinn sich hebt,
Zurück bleibt alles Bangen,
Die Brust mit neuem Mute strebt,
Erwacht ein neu Verlangen.
Die Sterne spiegeln sich im Meer,
Und golden glänzt die Flut.
Ich rannte taumelnd hin und her,
Und war nicht schlimm, nicht gut.
Sind Zweifel und wankender Sinn;
O tragt mich, ihr schaukelnden Wogen,
Zur längst ersehnten Heimat hin.
In lieber, dämmernder Ferne,
Dort rufen heimische Lieder,
Aus jeglichem Sterne
Blickt sie mit sanftem Auge nieder.
Ebne dich, du treue Welle,
Führe mich auf fernen Wegen
Zu der vielgeliebten Schwelle,
Endlich meinem Glück entgegen!
Note: Brahms indicated
meter of the song as 3/4 (9/8). Both of these are triple
but 3/4 has a “straight” division of the beat into two parts,
has a “triplet” division of the beat into three. While there
exceptions (notably at the very beginning), the vocal line is
in the 3/4 “straight” meter against the piano’s 9/8 “triplet”
0:00 [m. 1]--Four bright,
strong chords, beginning on an upbeat (partial measure), prepare
0:05 [m. 3]--Stanza 1 (A). The vocal line soars
happiness. The first two lines are set to two-measure
the last two to three-measure phrases. The rapid arpeggios
accompaniment are in a “divided” triplet rhythm (9/8). They
brilliant and virtuosic, featuring many rapidly repeated notes
double notes) at the tops of lines. The vocal line is in a
“straight” rhythm, but the subtle “triplet” feel appears at the
beginning on “froh und” and “Sinn sich.” The verse begins on
upbeat, which is absent for stanzas 3 and 5. Note the
harmonies under “hebt,” “Bangen,” and “erwacht.” The words
neu” are repeated as the line reaches its highest pitch.
0:23 [m. 13]--A piano
continues the brilliant arpeggios, highlighting the rapid repeated
notes at the top. It also modulates to the key of D major.
0:30 [m. 17]--Stanza 2 (B). This stanza is more
gentle. The brilliant arpeggios give way to more subdued,
undivided triplets in the piano with smooth left hand
The voice retains the “straight” rhythm. The first two lines
set in the closely related D major in two-measure phrases.
second line (without the word “und“) is repeated in longer note
stretching it to a three-measure phrase, followed by a measure of
0:45 [m. 25]--The last two
lines of the stanza move back to G and are set in the minor
that key. It is a very slight melancholy turn in this
song. Line 3 is set to a two-measure phrase. Line 4
it somewhat, but lengthens the last notes, stretching it to three
measures. A short interlude introduces rising triplet
a strong descent in slower notes, preparing the return of the
passionate, joyous A
0:59 [m. 33]--Stanza 3 (A). A repetition of the
from stanza 1, but with significant rhythm adjustments to fit the
text. The opening upbeat is gone, and in fact the verse
slightly after, rather than before the downbeat. The
feel at the opening is straightened out. Conversely, the
“schaukelnden” is set to a triplet where there was not one
before. There are other slight shifts. Most notably,
final cadence is slightly stretched out, ending on the downbeat of
next measure, since the poetic line ends on a strong, rather than
weak syllable. There is no text repetition at the highest
(as there was before), but the word “ersehnten” is stretched over
1:15 [m. 43]--An interlude
enters at the final downbeat of the extended vocal cadence.
piano arpeggios are now all rising and decrease in volume,
down to the tender music of stanza 4. As the key changes to
several colorful harmonies are introduced.
1:22 [m. 47]--Stanza 4 (C). Set in the “open”
key of C
major, this stanza is more gentle and tender than stanza 2
The piano makes its most significant departures from the 9/8
playing several decorative phrases in the straight 3/4 as it
with and echoes the voice. The first two lines are set to a
beautiful four-bar phrase with a single “color” note borrowed from
minor on “rufen.”
1:30 [m. 51]--This phrase
echoed almost exactly in the last two lines, but line four
couple of notes. The word “Sie” is set to a longer note
(significantly the one with the minor “color” inflection), as is
first syllable of “sanftem.” This stretches the four-bar
to five measures. This fourth line is repeated with even
lengthening and stretching, creating its own new four-bar phrase
more of the decorative 3/4 motion in the piano. This happens
more “color” notes move the music back to G and the music
volume for the final return of the exuberant A music. There is a
interlude continuing the piano figuration from the repetition of
1:48 [m. 61]--Stanza 5 (A). Again, this is a
repetition with rhythmic adjustments for the text. This is
only statement of the material that begins right on the downbeat
(stanza 1 began before it, stanza 3 after it). A triplet
heard on “Ebne,” but not on “treue.” An “extra” statement of
word “endlich” at the beginning of line 4 fills in a space where
existed before. There is no stretched out word on several
at the high point, as there was in stanza 3.
2:04 [m. 71]--The last
repeated in an extended cadence phrase. The word “endlich”
again stated twice in longer note values, the second with a color
on the last syllable. The final word “entgegen” is
the high point is again reached with very colorful harmony (Brahms
indicated a possible simplified version of this difficult last
word--Fischer-Dieskau sings the more difficult version). The
lengthening expands the phrase to five measures. The final
downbeat introduces a last measure of upward-striving piano
that conclude the song with a flourish.
2:23--END OF SONG [76 mm.]
15. “Treue Liebe dauert lange” (“True love
lingers long”). Ziemlich langsam (Rather slowly)--Lebhaft
(Lively)--Tempo I. Ziemlich langsam. Rondo form
(ABA’CA”). E-FLAT MAJOR, 4/4, 3/4, and cut [2/2] time (Low
key C major).
[Later title: Treue (Fidelity)].
Eventually fishermen lead him to
shepherd’s hut, where he discovers
Magelone. Back in Provence,
the three rings have been found by the royal cook in a fish’s
stomach. On every anniversary of their reunion, Peter and
Magelone sing this song.
[Note: Brahms omitted two
Tieck’s poems between Nos. 14 and 15.]
Treue Liebe dauert lange,
Überlebet manche Stund‘,
Und kein Zweifel macht sie bange,
Immer bleibt ihr Mut gesund.
Dräuen gleich in dichten Scharen,
Fordern gleich zum Wankelmut
Sturm und Tod, setzt den Gefahren
Lieb’ entgegen, treues Blut.
Und wie Nebel stürzt zurücke,
Was den Sinn gefangen hält,
Und dem heitern Frühlingsblicke
Öffnet sich die weite Welt.
Von Lieb’ ist das Glück,
Sie fliehen zurück;
Und selige Lust,
Die trunkene, wonneklopfende Brust;
Entschwinde die liebliche, selige, himmlische Lust!
0:00 [m. 1]--A four-bar
introduction with an upbeat introduces a three-note figure that
up and steps down. It will become prominent throughout the
song. The mood is fervent and hymn-like, with a chromatic
color-note twinge on the top note of the third figure. The
figure moves straight down in longer notes. The initial
4/4. The key of E-flat was also that of the first song, one
several elements that will here bring closure and unity to the
0:14 [m. 5]--Stanza 1 (A). The first line is
set to a
slowly upward and downward leaping line. The music of the
introduction is repeated underneath the vocal line in the
The second line has shorter note values, and the piano
becomes more active and syncopated after the restatement of the
introduction under the first line. The word “manche” is
0:40 [m. 13]--At the last
of the second line, the meter subtly changes to 3/4. A
three-note arpeggio in dotted rhythm is heard in octaves from the
bass while the right hand plays repeated triplet chords. The
voice echoes the bass arpeggio as it begins the third line.
bass arpeggio is heard one more time at a lower level after the
line begins. The fourth line is set to a forward-striving
line, with the piano adding an echoing melody over its constant
chords. The line is repeated (including an “extra”
“immer bleibt”) as the music descends to a warm cadence. At
cadence, the bass repeats the three-note arpeggio as the right
states the opening three-note figure again leading into the next
1:03 [m. 23]--Stanza 2 (B). The piano figuration
the end of stanza 1 continues, with the three-note leaping bass
arpeggios in the left hand and the triplet chords in the
The stanza begins with a dramatic and striking modulation over a
of minor-key harmonies. The vocal line steadily rises toward
dissonant climax in the rather remote B minor at the third line,
speaks of “storm and death.” Beginning with a syncopation,
fourth line suddenly becomes quiet and is set to a very sweet and
tender line in a rich B major. The triplets in the right
shift from repeated block chords to more gentle arpeggios.
cadence, an interlude utilizing the bass arpeggios modulates back
to E-flat major.
1:37 [m. 36]--Stanza 3 (A’). The music of stanza
repeated. The first two lines are now in the prevailing 3/4
rather than the opening 4/4. Surprisingly, this change does
affect the music as much as expected. The piano
with a shorter first note on each three-note group, is still heard
under the first line, and the syncopated music is still heard
second. The vocal line simply shortens the length of some
(usually the last ones in the measures). Line 3 and most of
4 are set to the same music as in stanza 1. The repetition
line 4 also begins the same, stating the words “öffnet sich”
twice. From that point, as “weite” is repeated, the line
and reaches higher to a loud, dramatic half cadence instead of
the soft and warm full cadence of stanza 1. The
last chord of the piano is marked with a fermata (hold).
2:28 [m. 54]--Stanza 4 (C). The tension is
the arrival of the new “Lebhaft” tempo and the quick 2/2 (cut
meter. The short lines of the stanza lend themselves well to
breathless setting. The first three lines are an ingenious
transformation of the piano introduction with its three-note
figures. The piano plays in a swinging triplet rhythm.
interjects a dramatic outburst after these lines, coming to
tension-filled fermata. The music remains in the home key of
2:38 [m. 61]--Lines 4-10
set to even more breathless music. The vocal line sweeps
generally downward in each measure, usually turning up on the last
note. The piano accompaniment also uses similar figures, but
are twice as fast as the vocal ones. Line 10 finally strives
upward to another held chord on A-flat major, the voice reaching
highest note of the song (A-flat) as it resolves upward.
2:54 [m. 74]--Lines 11-15
resume the quick motion, but the vocal line moves in longer notes
beginning with the chromatic descending line 13 (“auf immer”)
The direction of the fast piano figures is reversed. The
become even longer at line 14 (“und nimmer”). The piano
play long upward arpeggios at the first “nimmer.” The line
nimmer” is stated twice in long notes before a third statement
introduces the first word of line 15 (“entschwinde”) in faster
notes. The piano introduces a fast syncopated rhythm under
line, the right hand playing mostly in double notes (usually
sixths). “Und nimmer entschwinde” is repeated again (the
statement of line 14) before line 15 is finally completed, all
new syncopated piano figures. Two piano-only measures lead
expanded restatement of “die himmlische Lust.” There are
“color” notes throughout this passage.
3:18 [m. 96]--Lines 11-15
stated again in their entirety with no internal repetition, the
syncopated figures in the piano being replaced by the pattern
lines 4-10, with the left hand playing in a slower triplet
rhythm. The rhythm of the vocal line matches that of the
statement of lines 11-12 (which is the same as that of lines
1-3). Under the longer line 15, the hands reverse material,
the fast figures that are now in the left hand reverse
The voice again reaches its highest note (A-flat) on the word
but it leaps down and the music comes to one last tense fermata on
3:35 [m. 105]--A”. The final section
first line of stanza 1 followed by lines 11-12 and 14-15 of stanza
4. It resolves the tension of the last fermata by returning
the long-absent opening 4/4 meter and the slower tempo. The
setting matches the first two lines of stanza 1 (the 4/4 section)
until the last measure of that passage. To this music is set
1 of stanza 1 (after which there is a pause) and lines 11, 12, and
of stanza 4.
4:02 [m. 112]--The final
statement of the last line is to new music that continues the
of the first part of stanza 1. The cadence of the last
from that section is avoided. The word “entschwinde” moves
pattern of “und nimmer” (which matched the first “manche” in
up a step. The words “liebliche selige” introduce
downward-sweeping arpeggios over the continuing piano
syncopation. “Selige” once more reaches the highest A-flat,
is the final climax of the song. There is a pause after this
word. “Himmlische Lust” is finally set to another slowly
downward-sweeping arpeggio. As it is heard, the descending
three-note bass arpeggio from the beginning of the 3/4 section at
[m. 13] is heard, again over the triplet chords. The notes
to match the last vocal arpeggio This reminiscence only
measure and Brahms instructs a very fast quieting for the final
It turns out that this last descending arpeggio setting
Lust” nearly exactly matches the opening vocal gesture of the
song of the cycle, “Keinen hat es noch gereut.” By
three-note dotted-rhythm bass arpeggio first heard at 0:40 [m. 13]
also derived from that gesture. Thus by a very simple
Brahms brings the long, diverse cycle full circle. The
a sort of “heroic” motto.
4:37--END OF SONG [116 mm.]
END OF CYCLE
There is confusion over a certain passage of No. 3. In the
passage at 4:26 [m. 71], the first two lines of stanza 6 (here
marked D), Brahms
originally created a
different setting (line 3 was the same). He had a rising
line that echoed the piano bass. He later changed it to the
down-up C-minor arpeggio described in the guide. Late in his
life, he asked the publisher to change the passage back to the
rising scale, calling the revision “a great idiocy.” Many
editions retained the revision (including the first complete
reprinted by Dover) and that is what Fischer-Dieskau recorded, so
is what is described in the guide.
There is similar confusion in a passage of No. 4. It
third line of stanza 4 (which begins at 2:15 [m. 38]), here marked
the original setting, which consists of an upward leap beginning
second beat of the measure, matching the analogous passage of
at 2:58 [m. 59]. The first complete edition has a different
setting for this line that leaps down and begins on the first beat
the measure. This is apparently another revision that was
rejected by Brahms in favor of the original setting, which in this
is what this recording presents.
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