Episode 66. Christmas (Art) Songs

Episode 66. Christmas (Art) Songs



In preparation for the upcoming holiday, I offer this week a cross-section of art songs and classical arrangements of folk songs, not only from Germany, which is the epicenter of the Christmas Lied, but also France, Norway, the United States, Finland, England, and Spain The performers, recorded between 1927 and 2010, include Ernestine Schumann-Heink, Régine Crespin, Hermann Prey, Claudia Muzio, Elly Ameling, Marian Anderson, Ian Partridge, Karl Erb, Wolfgang Anheisser, Jan DeGaetani, Jorma Hynninen, Bernarda Fink, Olaf Bär, Susan Dunn, Kathleen Ferrier, and Bernard Kruysen, among many others, in songs by composers including, in part, Johannes Brahms, Joaquín Nin, Hugo Wolf, Peter Warlock, Claude Debussy, Charles Ives, and Paul Hindemith. The episode features several performances by my teacher, the esteemed accompanist John Wustman, who on Christmas Day celebrates his 90th birthday.

Links to my 2019 Christmas episodes:

Episode 13: Christmas with the Tenors (including everyone from Fritz Wunderlich to Georges Thill to Roland Hayes): www:countermelodypodcast.com/episode-13-christmas-with-the-tenors

Episode 14: Christmas Potpourri (including my choices for the six most depressing pop Christmas songs ever!):  www.countermelodypodcast.com/episode-14-christmas-potpourri-ii-hard-try

John Wustman, who turns 90 on December 25, 2020


Engelbert Humperdinck: Weihnachten. Ernestine Schumann-Heink; Orchestra conducted by Rosario Bourdon [1927]

Peter Cornelius: Weihnachtsbaum (Weihnachtslieder, Op. 8/1). Ruth-Margret Pütz; Alexander Sander

Max Reger: La ninna-nanna della Vergine [Mariä Wiegenlied], Op. 76/52. Claudio Muzio; Orchestra conducted by Lorenzo Molajoli [1935]

Max Reger: Maria am Rosenstrauch, Op. 142/3. Peter Schreier, Norman Shetler [1979]

Charles Bressler

Ned Rorem: A Christmas Carol (Three Medieval Poems, No. 1). Charles Bressler; Ned Rorem [1964]

The young Ned Rorem in a photo retouched by Man Ray

Charles Ives: A Christmas Carol. Verse 1: Marni Nixon; John McCabe [1967]; Verse 2: Jan DeGaetani; Gilbert Kalish [1976]

Edvard Grieg: Sang til juletræet [Song for the Christmas Tree] (Seven Children’s Songs, Op. 61/2). Marianne Hirsti; Rudolf Jansen [1993]

Joseph Haas (1879-1960)

Joseph Haas: Weihnachtslegende (Krippenlieder, Op. 49/1). Peter Schreier; Hansjörg Albrecht [live Dresden Frauenkirche, December 2000]

Carl Loewe: Des fremden Kindes heil’ger Christ, Op. 33/3. Karl Erb; Orchestra conducted by Bruno Seidler-Winkler [1935]

Hugo Wolf: Schlafendes Jesuskind (Mörike-Lieder, No. 25). Jorma Hynninen; Ralf Gothóni [1978]

Ralf Gothóni

Hugo Wolf: Die ihr schwebet um diese Palmen (Spanisches Liederbuch, No. 4). Irmgard Seefried; Erik Werba [1959]

Erik Werba

Johannes Brahms: Geistliches Wiegenlied, Op. 91/2. Marian Anderson, William Primrose, Franz Rupp [1941]; Kathleen Ferrier, Max Gilbert, Phyllis Spurr [1949]

Elly Ameling and Dalton Baldwin

Traditional French, arr. Willem Pijper: Entre le bœuf et l’âne gris. Elly Ameling; Dalton Baldwin [1977]

Erkki Melartin: Kristuslapsen kehtolaulu [The Christchild’s Lullaby], Op. 42/2. Lilli Paasikivi; Ulf Söderblom, Jyväskylä Sinfonia [2003]

Peter Cornelius: Die Könige (Weihnachtslieder, Op. 8/3). Irmgard Seefried; Erik Werba [1952]

Paul Hindemith: Cum natus esset (13 Motets, No. 8). Irmgard Seefried; Erik Werba [1952]

Richard Strauss: Die heiligen drei Könige, Op. 56/6. Elizabeth Harwood; Norman Del Mar; New Philharmonia Orchestra [live 23 March 1968]

Régine Crespin and John Wustman

Hugo Wolf: Epiphanias (Goethe-Lieder, No. 19). Régine Crespin; John Wustman [live New York, Hunter College [11 November 1967]

John Wustman, my beloved teacher

Hugo Wolf: Auf ein altes Bild (Mörike-Lieder, No. 23). Susan Dunn; John Wustman [2010]

Peter Cornelius: Christus der Kinderfreund (Weihnachtslieder, Op. 8/5). Hermann Prey; Leonard Hokanson [1971]

Richard Trunk: Christbaum (Weihnachtslieder, Op. 61/7). Wolfgang Anheisser; Julius Severin [1969]

Richard Trunk: Idyll (Weihnachtslieder, Op. 61/6). Olaf Bär; Helmut Deutsch [1996]

Peter Warlock: The Frostbound Wood. Ian Partridge; Jennifer Partridge [1980]

Gabriel Fauré: Noël, Op. 43/1. Eileen Farrell; George Trovillo [1964]

Claude Debussy: Noël des enfants qui n’ont plus de Maisons. Bernard Kruysen; Noël Lee [1972]

Noël Lee

Maurice Ravel: Noël des jouets. Denise Duval; Francis Poulenc [live Bordeaux 16 May 1958]

Francis Poulenc and Denise Duval

Traditional French, arr. Joseph Canteloube: Noël de Basse-Auvergne [Il sommeillait, le pauvre pâtre]. Geneviève Touraine, Irène Aïtoff [1956]

Dalton Baldwin (L) and Gérard Souzay (R)

Traditional French, arr. Maurice Emmanuel: Noël Auxois. Gérard Souzay; Dalton Baldwin [live, details unknown]

Joaquín Rodrigo: Pastorcito santo (Tres Villancicos, No. 1). Bernarda Fink; Roger Vignoles [2000]

Martin Katz and Marilyn Horne

Joaquín Nin: Jesús de Nazareth (Diez Villancicos españolas, No. 9). Marilyn Horne; Martin Katz [1974]

Joaquín Nin: Villancico Vasco (Diez Villancicos españolas, No. 3). Igor Gorin [performance details unknown]

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