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MENDELSSOHN: Lieder ohne Worte (Songs Without Words) (arr. F. Hermann for violin and piano)

Composer(s):Mendelssohn, Felix
Artist(s) Garben, Cord, piano • Strauss, Axel, violin
Period(s) Romantic
Genre Classical Music
Category Chamber Music
Catalogue 8.570213
Label Naxos
Quality   320kbps
 
 
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8.570213
 


The series of Songs without Words that Mendelssohn wrote for piano and published from 1830 onwards serve as a very personal musical diary, purely and simply expressing its own musical meaning without verbal connotation. In arranging some of them for violin and piano the Leipzig violinist Friedrich Hermann was able to create a useful addition to the repertoire of his instrument without making any significant changes to the texture and form of the original compositions.


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Review By Stephen Chin,Stringendo,December 2007

Late in life, Mendelssohn wrote a Song Without Words for cello and piano and unfortunately it was the only work of this type he wrote for strings. A generation later, Friederich Hermann, one of Mendelssohn’s students, arranged many of the Songs Without Words originally for piano for violin and piano. They work remarkably well, enhancing all the manifest lyricism and drama. Strauss’s playing is warm, refined urbane and sensitive to the many changes of moods between the songs. It would be a welcome addition to the violin repertoire if these out-of-print works were readily available. A delightful compilation.



Review By Andrew Fraser,Limelight Magazine,July 2007

Axel Strauss is an excellent violinist who plays these with wit and verve and, when required, a plaintive restraint. Pianist Cord Garben accepts his moderate role with good grace. The recording, made in Germany in 1999, is of the highest standard while the sleeve naote are typically brief for the label, but well-written. This set may well be a curiosity, but it is exactly the repertoire with which a company like Naxos can excel. Moreover when the performance is as well played as this and comes at a budget price, it merits serious consideration.




Review By David Denton, Naxos,March 2007

p >Friedrich Hermann was for a short time a composition student of Mendelssohn, though his lasting fame would be as a violin teacher and the editor of many works for use by students. Among his many arrangements was this group of twenty-two Songs without words, though the word 'arrangement' is misleading, Hermann leaving the music exactly as it was, and simply giving the melody to the violin with the remainder of the original piano piece as the accompaniment. I must confess the result sounds rather like Fritz Kreisler's pastiche pieces, the music amiable enough and well within the scope of reasonably proficient amateurs. There is really nothing to tax the German-born Axel Strauss, his tone warm, intonation never questionable, and the two more....




 

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