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Past Events > 2019

7. Carl Loewe - Master Storyteller: Christina Gansch, Martin Hässler, Richard Stokes & Laura Tunbridge

12 October 2019, 11:00 - 15:30


Study Event

Thumbnail of Jacqueline du Pré Music Building

Jacqueline du Pré Music Building

St Hilda's College,

‘For many years, Carl Loewe, our most outstanding ballad composer and quite likely the most productive one in this genre, completely disappeared from the collective memory of the public at large, this even though hardly any leading music expert would dispute his importance.’

This assessment by Walther Wossidlo is more than 100 years old – but misperceptions about the composer abide. In the 150th anniversary of his death, we explore the prolific and brilliant song composer Carl Loewe and his astonishing gift for storytelling, showing the breadth and depth of his work, and reasserting his place as one of the most important song composers.

11am - 11.45am

Richard Stokes gives an overview of the long and fruitful life of the composer, introducing key poets, influences and legacy. He also shows how Loewe was not just a storyteller, but also a composer of profound and beautiful lyric songs.

11.45am - 12.15pm

Every song tells a story, so what is it that makes a ‘ballad’? This question, key to understanding the works of Carl Loewe and their reception, is addressed by Laura Tunbridge.

12.15pm - 1.15pm

A light lunch is available for purchase in advance (£7).

1.15pm - 2.15pm

Christina Gansch and Martin Hässler perform a programme of Loewe’s glittering ballads and beautifully expressive songs, alongside works by Schubert, Robert Schumann, and Clara Schumann.

2.30pm - 3.30pm

Richard Stokes focuses on two poems by Goethe, both set by Loewe and others, offering rich contrasts and opening questions about different approaches to narrative in song. The event concludes with a general discussion of Loewe, drawing together today’s speakers and performers.

Please note: Blue Badge parking should be arranged directly with St Hilda's Lodge. Oxford Lieder is unable to allocate onsite spaces.

Artist Portrait

Christina Gansch

Christina Gansch


Austrian soprano Christina Gansch is the winner of the 2014 Kathleen Ferrier Award and is a graduate of the Royal Academy of Music and the Mozarteum in Salzburg. In the 2019/20 season Christina makes her debut at the Bayerische Staatsoper, Munich as Gretel Hansel und Gretel; Marzelline Fidelio for the Teatro Comunale di Bologna and in a new production for the Glyndebourne Festival and the title role in a new production of Rodelinda for the Händel-Festspiele Göttingen. In concert she sings Mahler’s Symphony No. 4 at the BB... Read Full Biography
Artist Portrait

Martin Hässler

Martin Hässler


German bass-baritone Martin Hässler is an alumnus of the Leipzig Academy of Music and Guildhall School of Music and Drama’s prestigious opera programme, where he studied with Rudolf Piernay and Janice Chapman, and was a two year recipient of the Guildhall Artist Fellowship. He won second prize at Thomas Quasthoff’s Das Lied – International Song Competition, first prize at Bundeswettbewerb Gesang Berlin (junior) and Best Singer’s Award at the Gerald Moore Competition London. In 2016 he made his debut at Garsing... Read Full Biography
Artist Portrait

Sholto Kynoch

Sholto Kynoch


Sholto Kynoch is a sought-after pianist who specialises in chamber music and song accompaniment. In addition to a busy performance schedule and a fast-growing discography, he is the founder and director of the Oxford Lieder Festival, the UK’s most renowned song festival, which recently won a prestigious Royal Philharmonic Society Award. In recent years he has appeared at London’s Wigmore Hall, the Palau de la Música in Barcelona, the Berliner Konzerthaus, the Victoria Concert Hall in Singapore, the Opéra de Lille... Read Full Biography
Artist Portrait

Richard Stokes

Richard Stokes

Speaker, Translator

Richard Stokes, Professor of Lieder at the Royal Academy of Music, is a regular juror at international Song Competitions. For the operatic stage he has translated Wozzeck and La voix humaine (Opera North), and Parsifal, Lulu, L’Amour de loin and Jakob Lenz (ENO). His books include The Spanish Song Companion (with Jacqueline Cockburn), J.S. Bach – The Complete Cantatas (Scarecrow Press), A French Song Companion (with Graham Johnson) (OUP), The Book of Lieder (Faber), a translation of Jules Renard’s complete Histoires Nature... Read Full Biography
Artist Portrait

Laura Tunbridge

Laura Tunbridge


Laura Tunbridge is a musicologist whose research has centred on German Romanticism, with a particular interest in vocal and chamber music and its reception through criticism, performance, and composition. She studied at Oxford (B.A.), Nottingham (M.A.) and Princeton (PhD) and taught at the Universities of Reading and Manchester before joining the Faculty of Music at Oxford in 2014, where she is now a Professor and Henfrey Fellow and tutor in music at St Catherine’s College. Laura’s books include Schumann’s Late Style (C... Read Full Biography

This event is part of a series:

Tales of Beyond - Magic, Myths and Mortals

The 18th Oxford Lieder Festival will explore life, death, and the mysterious areas between and beyond. Sprites and nymphs cause mayhem and mischief, while legends abound from Greco-Roman sagas to the Lorelei and the Erlking. Storytelling with the Crick Crack Club, a ghost tour, a magic show and more all complement the myriad concerts, masterclasses and study events over a packed fortnight....

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