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Songs

Songs

Sommerruh (1849) WoO7

Sommerruh

Sommerruh, wie schön bist du!
Nachtigallenseelen tragen
Ihre weichen, süßen Klagen
Sich aus dunkeln Lauben zu,
Sommerruh, wie schön bist du!
Sommerruh, wie schön bist du!
Klare Glockenklänge klingen
Auf der Lüfte lauen Schwingen
Von der mondumblitzten Fluh,
Sommerruh, wie schön bist du!
Sommerruh, wie schön bist du!
Welch’ ein Leben, himmlisch Weben!
Engel durch die Lüfte schweben
Ihrer blauen Heimat zu.
Sommerruh, wie schön bist du!

Summer peace

Summer peace, how lovely you are!
The souls of nightingales send each other
From dark bowers
Their sweet and soft laments.
Summer peace, how lovely you are!
Summer peace, how lovely you are!
The clear sound of bells rings out
On the breezes’ warm wings
From the moon-bespangled precipice.
Summer peace, how lovely you are!
Summer peace, how lovely you are!
What vitality, what celestial weaving!
Angels hover through the air
Towards their blue homeland.
Summer peace, how lovely you are!
Translations by Richard Stokes, author of The Book of Lieder (Faber, 2005)

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Composer

Robert Schumann was a German composer and influential music critic. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest composers of the Romantic era. Schumann left the study of law, intending to pursue a career as a virtuoso pianist. He had been assured by his teacher Friedrich Wieck that he could become the finest pianist in Europe, but a hand injury ended this dream. Schumann then focused his musical energies on composing.

Schumann's published compositions were written exclusively for the piano until 1840; he later composed works for piano and orchestra; many Lieder (songs for voice and piano); four symphonies; an opera; and other orchestral, choral, and chamber works. Works such as KinderszenenAlbum für die JugendBlumenstück, the Sonatas and Albumblätter are among his most famous. His writings about music appeared mostly in the Neue Zeitschrift für Musik (New Journal for Music), a Leipzig-based publication which he jointly founded.

In 1840, Schumann married Friedrich Wieck's daughter Clara, against the wishes of her father, following a long and acrimonious legal battle, which found in favor of Clara and Robert. Clara also composed music and had a considerable concert career as a pianist, the earnings from which formed a substantial part of her father's fortune.

Schumann suffered from a lifelong mental disorder, first manifesting itself in 1833 as a severe melancholic depressive episode, which recurred several times alternating with phases of ‘exaltation’ and increasingly also delusional ideas of being poisoned or threatened with metallic items. After a suicide attempt in 1854, Schumann was admitted to amental asylum, at his own request, in Endenich near Bonn. Diagnosed with "psychotic melancholia", Schumann died two years later in 1856 without having recovered from his mental illness.

Taken from wikipedia. To read the rest of the article, please click here.


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