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23.4.16

CD Review: Braunfels Lieder


available at Amazon
W. Braunfels, Lieder, M. Petersen, K. Jarnot, E. Schneider

(released on February 12, 2016)
Capriccio C5251 | 55'40"
Charles T. Downey, CD review: The forgotten bird songs of a ‘degenerate’ composer (Washington Post, April 24)
In the 1930s, Walter Braunfels (1882-1954) ran afoul of the Nazi party in his native Germany. His music was condemned as “degenerate” because his father was Jewish, even though the composer was raised a Protestant and later converted to Catholicism. After World War II, Braunfels returned to his teaching post at the Hochschule für Musik in Cologne, but the moment for his largely tonal style of music had come and gone. Since his opera “Die Vögel,” based on Aristophanes’s “The Birds,” was revived in the 1990s, his music has enjoyed a rebirth, helped by the advocacy of his grandson Stephan Braunfels, a prominent architect in Germany. Conductors James Conlon, of the Los Angeles Opera, and Manfred Honeck, of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, are among his champions.

In addition to his operas, string quartets and symphonic music, there is now a recording of some of Braunfels’s songs, all composed before he was condemned by the Nazis, released earlier this year by Capriccio...
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