Friday, September 24, 2021

Gundula Janowitz sings Schubert

No. 367 of the ongoing ITYWLTMT series of audio montages is this week's Tuesday Blog. It can be found in our archives at


A few words about our new “A la Carte” series:

As we curate our Tuesday Blog playlists, and in particular the ones we explored under Project 366, we found that some fell well-short of our 60-75 minute runtime, others far exceeded that same runtime. In an effort to better fit our preferred time boxing, I decided to recast selected playlists by “mashing them up” with other playlists, or mixing and matching them with new related material..

This week’s offering is a straight “upsized” version, where I added a few tracks to an otherwise unchanged playlist.

Original posts: TalkClassical; Blogger

As I stated in the original post, Schubert's body of work includes over 600 songs for voice and piano. That number alone is vastly impressive - many composers fail to reach that number of compositions in their entire output, let alone in a single genre. But it isn't just the quantity that's remarkable: Schubert consistently, and frequently, wrote songs of such beauty and quality that composers such as Schumann, Wolf and Brahms all credited him with reinventing, invigorating and bringing greater seriousness to a previously dilletante musical form.

Gundula Janowitz officially retired from the stage in 1990 and, according to most accounts, gave occasional recitals until around the middle of that decade with her final recital –captured for posterity in a bootleg recording - in September 1999.

To her Schubert credits we have studio recordings from 1977-78 (with Irwin Gage at the piano) and a late-career recital with Charles Spencer at the piano re-issued on The Nuova Era and Brilliant Classics labels.

The filler tracks are three selections from a collection of settings of Goethe’s Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship attributed to the character Mignon.

I think you will (still) love this music too.


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