Work of the Week - Aribert Reimann: Sieben Lieder
In the 1990s, Aribert Reimann made a series of arrangements of lieder by the Romantics: Robert Schumann, Franz Schubert, Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy, and Johannes Brahms, for voice and string quartet. Now, on 22 April 2014, the world premiere of a new arrangement, Sieben Lieder - this time on seven songs by Franz Liszt - takes place at the Hamburgische Staatsoper with baritone Viktor Rud and members of the Hamburg Philharmonic.
Aribert Reimann’s idea to arrange the lieder of Franz Liszt for baritone and string quartet goes back to his collaboration with Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, recording some of these lieder for the German broadcasting company formerly known as Sender Freies Berlin (SFB). Since then, Reimann has continued to be fascinated by Liszt’s thrilling harmony and unconventional treatment of the voice. Here, he has compiled a cycle containing seven lieder from Liszt’s middle and late periods, arranged so that each song is the logical continuation of its predecessor. Liszt’s fundamental harmony has been retained, but the registers have been altered to such an extent that they appear in a completely new light.
"The Term 'lied' has evolved and shifted, new formal and aesthetic attitudes have developed (…) for me, revealing the meaning of a poem is much easier using the acoustic colour of different instruments than with the abstract, almost naked sound of a piano." - Aribert Reimann
Alongside Sieben Lieder will be performances of Reimann’s Fünf Gedichte von Paul Celan and Neun Sonette der Louïze Labé as well as his arrangement of Brahms' Ophela-Lieder.