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Naxos proudly presents specially chosen packages of Songs, Mélodies and Lieder highlighting national trends in Germany, England, France, Italy, America, Russia and other countries. The packages contain recordings with such outstanding artists as María Bayo, Ruth Ziesak, Hedwig Fassbender, Felicity Lott, Philip Langridge, Sibylla Rubens and Véronique Gens. Expand your classical music library at a special price when you buy a complete package, or purchase the featured ClassicsOnline Exclusive Sampler and get a discount code you can use on ANY title in this feature.

Naxos Songs - Part I

German Songs Part 1 - German Songs of the Classical and Romantic Period

This package reflects the development from the Classical models - Mozart, Kraus and Haydn - to the late Romantic period. Also included are some fine works by The Earl of Abingdon, one of the leading English amateurs, who invited Haydn to London. Spohr’s versatile songs range from simple settings to those that require an operatic voice. The songs of Fanny Mendelssohn-Hensel reflect her distinctive musical gifts, while some of Clara Schumann’s delightful songs were even better loved by contemporaries than her husband’s.

Robert Schumann’s beloved song cycle Frauenliebe und –Leben is also included. (More of his works are presented in a separate package dedicated to this master of the genre.)

Brahms‘ Four Serious Songs, Wagner’s Wesendonck Songs, and expressive works by Mahler and Strauss which mark the culmination of late Romanticism complete this exceptional package.

Franz Schubert

Schubert is often referred to as the ‘Lieder King’. He composed more than 600 songs and significantly developed the genre from light entertainment to highly-regarded treasures that are singular masterworks. In these highly emotional, harmonically daring and beautiful works, the masterful vocal lines are underpinned by piano accompaniments that illustrate and reveal psychological aspects of the texts. Enjoy the beloved song cycles Winterreise, Die schöne Müllerin, Schwanengesang, and such individual masterworks as Der Erlkönig, Heidenröslein, Ave Maria, Gretchen am Spinnrade, Ständchen Frühlingsglaube and Die Forelle.

English Songs

Enjoy some favourite songs and rarities from the 19th and 20th centuries, including Elgar’s beloved song cycle Sea Pictures; works by Quilter based on English and Irish poems from the 15th to the 19th centuries; and beautifully melodic songs by Alwyn. Discover songs by Holst that chart his development as a composer whose interest in ancient lyrics and folk-music is balanced by his highly personal experiments with musical structures, melodies and rhythms.

Songs by Walton, Coates, Somervell, Gurney, Gibbs and Warlock complete this exquisite package.

Benjamin Britten

Britten composed most of his songs for his partner, the famous tenor Peter Pears. Spanning the greater part of his long career, the five Canticles are dramatically composed on religious themes. His many folk song arrangements reflect his live long love for folk songs and his unique gift for bringing new life to familiar lyrics with striking accompaniments. Les Illuminations for voice and string orchestra sets powerful lyrics by the French poet Arthur Rimbaud. With the Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings, this is regarded as Britten’s major orchestral song cycle. After their collaboration on some very successful films, Britten and the poet Auden completed the ambitious orchestral song cycle Our Hunting Fathers. Other song cycles and individual songs followed, including the light-hearted ‘Cabaret Songs’.

Lennox Berkeley, a close friend of Britten, also composed a number of beautiful songs to Auden’s poetry.

French Songs

Belioz’s haunting song cycle Les nuits d’été (Summer Nights) is based on poems published under the title ‘La comédie de la mort’ (The Comedy of Death) by his friend Gautier. Canteloube is best known for his folk-song arrangements, particularly the delightful Chants d’Auvergne presented here by celebrated soprano Véronique Gens. Her outstanding performance was praised as “the most creamy smooth singing you will have ever heard.”

Scandinavian Songs

With more than 180 songs, Grieg contributed significantly to the development of Nordic song tradition. Most of his songs were inspired by his wife Nina who was a singer and are based on Norwegian or Danish poems.

Although Sibelius is most famous for his orchestral music, he composed around 100 songs he described as his ‘innermost self’. These highly emotional pieces set technical and expressive demands for the singer.

Uncover some Finnish rarities by Madetoja, a student of Sibelius, and Kuula, who is highly acclaimed for his songs based on Finnish folk songs.

In his songs, Sinding early developed his very personal style using folk song like melodies and harmonies influenced by German Romanticism. Sinding was highly appreciated by Grieg: "He is berated for being too Wagnerian, but that is not right. Even in his songs he is simply himself.”

Russian & Polish Songs

Enjoy some emotionally charged Russian and Polish songs, including works by the ‘Russian Mighty Five’, Balakirev, Mussorgsky, Cui, Borodin and Rimsky-Korsakov. Tchaikovsky is best known for his large-scale compositions, but he also wrote more than 100 songs that reflect his abilities as an operatic composer and his gift for writing captivating melodies.

Szymanowski’s songs contain influences of German neo-Romanticism and reflect the composer’s deep interest in the Arab and Persian culture.

*Offer available from July 7 to August 3, 2010.

Naxos Songs - Part II (Coming in August)

German Songs Part 2 - German Songs of the 20th Century

Franz Schubert Part 3

Robert Schumann

Ralph Vaughan Williams & Gerald Finzi

American Songs

Italian Songs

Spanish Songs

Songs from Around the World



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