Episode 224. Handel’s Deutsche Arien

Episode 224. Handel’s Deutsche Arien



This year for Thanksgiving I bring you Handel’s glorious Neun deutsche Arien composed in the year 1725 to meditative texts by Barthold Heinrich Brockes, who ten years previous had provided Handel with the text to his Der für due Sünden der Welt gemartete und sterbende Jesus (AKA simply the Brockes-Passion). The texts, Handel’s last settings of his native German language, are from a large collection of religious poems by Brockes, many of them referencing nature. The recordings I use, made between the years 1953 and 1990 are rooted in the “old fashioned” style of baroque singing, in which full-bodied vocalism is wedded to exquisite legato singing and pinpoint diction. The singers are among the most gifted of their eras, names both familiar (Edith Mathis, Yvonne Kenny, Hermann Prey, Arleen Augér, Robert Tear, and Júlia Hamari) and less well-remembered today (Adele Stolte, Margot Guilleaume, Catarina Ligendza). Each of the arias includes an instrumental obbligato, taken on these recordings by either violin, oboe or flute, and played by some of the greatest instrumentalists of their respective generations (Iona Brown, Eduard Melkus, and Helmut Winschermann, among others). Altogether a cornucopia of vocal and musical bounty which provides a fulsome accompaniment to the holiday. Coincidentally, two of this week’s featured singers (Júlia Hamari and Yvonne Kenny) celebrate birthdays this week.

The episode begins with a brief tribute to the late David Del Tredici.


David Del Tredici (16.III.1937— 11.XI.2023)

David Del Tredici, Jaime Manrique: Matthew Shepard [excerpt] (Three Baritone Songs). Chris Trakas, David Del Tredici [2001]

All other works on this episode were composed by George Frideric Handel in 1725 to texts by Berthold Heinrich Brockes and published under the titled Neun deutsche Arien.

Singe, Seele, Gott zum Preise, HWV 206. Adele Stolte, Karl Suske, Wolfgang Iwer, Peter Klug [1968]

In den angenehmen Büschen, HWV 209. Yvonne Kenny, Sara Watkins, Martin Isepp, Jane Fenton [1990]

Süße Stille, sanfte Quelle, HWV 205. Robert Tear, Iona Brown, Simon Preston, Kenneth Heath, Neville Marriner, Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields [1969]

Das zitternde Glänzen der spielenden Wellen, HWV 203. Arleen Augér, Burkhard Glaetzner, Walter Heinz Bernstein, Matthias Pfaender [1981]

Die ihr aus dunklen Grüften den eitlen Mammon grabt, HWV 208. Margot Guilleaume, Ulrich Grehling, Fritz Neumeyer, August Wenzinger [1953]

Meine Seele hört im Sehen, HWV 207. Catarina Ligendza, Peter Ligendza, Colin Tilney, Hans Lemke, Ottomar Borwitzky [1977]

Süßer Blumen Ambraflocken, HWV 204. Júlia Hamari, Hungarian Baroque Trio [Gyula Csetényi, Ferenc Kerek, Zsolt Bartha] [1990]

Künft’ger Zeiten eitler Kummer, HWV 202. Hermann Prey, Eduard Melkus, Leonard Hokanson, Marcal Cervera [1974]

Flammende Rose, Zierde der Erden, HWV 210. Edith Mathis, Friedrich Schmidtmann, Walter Thoene, Gerhard Naumann [1962]

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