HANS ZENDER (b.1936): Schuberts Winterreise for Tenor and Small Orchestra.
Catalogue Number: 10U059
Description: Schubert's great epic exploration of loneliness has always brought the best, and most searching, performances out of its interpreters - those equipped to do it justice at least - and this has, of course, traditionally meant a singer and a pianist. What Zender has done in this audacious and magnificent 'composed interpretation' is to assume the mantle of interpreter by bringing the full resources of music history since the work's composition to bear on it, amplifying its drama and emphasising its relevance as a contemporary composition with a timeless message. As Zender has written: " ... in some places in Winterreise one is tempted to say that the expressionism of our century is already foreshadowed." Much of the work is rendered faithfully in terms of Schubert's unsurpassable melodies and word-setting, orchestrated with great imagination and subtlety in a composite style that takes Mahler as its starting point and incorporates elements of styles that followed and were a consequence of his innovations in orchestration. In some cases, Zender contributes his own preludes, postludes and interludes, as in the desolate 'footsteps' that announce the rhythm of the first song; these and abrupt juxtapositions of harsh modern interjections serve as scene-setting illustration, but never distract from the respectful presentation of Schubert's work. Julian Prégardien (tenor), Deutsche Radio Philharmonie; Robert Reimer.