The first piece I am going to discuss is the Liederkries movement from the piano concerto, No. 2 Intermezzo by Robert Schumann (1810-1856), the great composer of the Romantic era. This is a piece that is included in a twelve songs cycle, and Intermezzo is the second piece in this cycle. This cycle is called Eichendorff Liederkreis. This composition refers to the Romantic era because all of Schumann’s songs were written specifically for voice piano performance or lieder.
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I will write about this song because this composition serves the brightest representative of its epoch encompassing all features of romantic songs. While listening to this musical piece, I managed to feel an intense expression of emotion where fantasy and aspiration for adventure can be perceived. The melody was sounding quite lyrical, often chromatic, and I could hear the use of discords.
I could also hear the ambiguity in rhythm and meter, and a special focus was also made on tonality. In particular, I could hear the dissonance in voice and piano and, at the same time, it was possible to feel how the piano catches each amplified tone of the voice. Nevertheless, the music sounded much more delicate as compared with rigid voice with a wide pitch range.
The second piece I am going to consider is from the Chanson de Don Quichotte from the lieder concerto, No 1. Chanson du Depart of Jack Ibert (1890-1962), a great French composer who did not belong to any of the dominant genres of music. Therefore, he is famous for his eclectic compositions.
The composition is from the first part of a two-party Chanson de Don Quichotte. The song is written for voice and piano and has the characteristic feature of the eclectic genre in music. While listening to this composition, I could hear the notes of romanticism in the beginning. At the end of this musical piece, the song sounded even a bit frivolous and confusing. The rhythmic patterns were reminiscent of Romantic music because the voice pitch varied and piano accompanied the narrations of the performer.
Hence, the piece reminded me of the incidental music because I could predict what part would be next. The lyrical orientation of the song was sophisticatedly intertwined with ironical and even satirical features, which was quite typical of Ibert’s compositions.
Therefore, it was impossible to distinguish between the music and farce. Despite the diversity of genres and styles used in the movement, general features of the music piece could still be attained to the Classical performance since the composition was accompanied by piano. Besides, the song suggested an antique sounding with vocal melismas.
In general, the concert was significantly inspiring and touching at the same time. A combination of romantic and classical styles kept the audience in suspense.
Delicate transitions and incidental resonances precisely reflected the prominent characteristic of the style. The lyrics of the presented pieces unveiled the themes of love, suffering, passion, and remorse. The music was transferring the audience in romantic times.
I was especially captured by the performers who managed to grasp every single meaning of each intonation and word. It is not in vain that I chose the songs by Schumann and Ibert because they seemed quite similar in meaning and thematic reflection. I should also admit that the differences in styles and genres did not divert my attention from the original ideas of the songs.