The Master Singer (I/III)

Fischer-Dieskau teaches Schumann

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Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau — Teacher, baritone

Nicholas Wilson — Tenor

Yukari Koyasu — Pianist

Iztiar Real — Soprano

Karola Theill — Pianist

René Hess — Baritone

Program notes

Pull up a chair for a riveting series of 1992 master classes at Berlin's Hochschule der Künste by the one and only Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, one of the most celebrated baritones of all time, in a documentary series by Bruno Monsaingeon, man of letters and music and maker of legendary films. A peerless interpreter of German Romantic melody, Fischer-Dieskau left behind multiple benchmark recordings of works by Schubert, Schumann, Brahms, and Wagner. In addition to his remarkable performing career, he took great pleasure in teaching, taking the time to guide younger artists through difficult repertoire with perspicacity and finesse.

The first episode of this series takes us on a journey through the melancholy and passionate world of Robert Schumann, whose life was marked both by profound grief and profound love for his wife Clara. One of the most literary-minded of the Romantics, Schumann succeeded in marrying text and music through his beautiful and intense Lieder. Melodies from the Dichterliebe and Liederkreis cycles feature in this chapter, two works that still sound to our modern ears "remarkable not only for their exceptional poetic intensity, but also for their perfect fusion of text and music, and for the composer's profound psychological understanding of the very heart of poetry" (Claude Jottrand).

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