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Hélène Grimaud pays homage to Ukraine's greatest living composer with an album of songs by Valentin Silvestrov. Joined by the young baritone Konstantin Krimmel, winner of the 2018 International Helmut Deutsch Lied Competition, Grimaud presents the gentle music and quiet nostalgia of some of the most exquisitely beautiful poetry ever written. Silent Songs blends the voices of classic Russian, Ukrainian and English poets together to create a "harmony of mysterious power," as expressed in a line from the Baratynsky poem that opens the album. Valentin Silvestrov's Silent Songs includes contemplative settings of verse by Russian poets Pushkin, Lermontov, Tyutchev, Baratynsky, Zhukovsky, Yesenin and Mandelstam, Ukrainian lyrics by Taras Shevchenko, and Russian translations of poetry by Keats and Shelley. Grimaud discovered Silvestrov's Silent Songs almost 20 years ago when she received a recording of the complete song-cycle as a birthday gift. Enchanted by the composer's music, she soon added a number of his piano pieces to her repertoire and began a long search for the ideal voice to partner in Silent Songs. Her search came to an end when she was introduced to German-Romanian baritone Konstantin Krimmel. "It is music which I find deeply touching in its authenticity and transparency of feelings," observes Hélène Grimaud. "It is utterly poetic, never pretending to be something else. I am always happy to see how much it resonates with people."
...one can hear these songs without focusing too closely on the texts; they have a mysterious alchemy of voice and piano. This is a beautiful recording that will reveal much on multiple hearings.
- Double LP
- Recorded & Mastered by Emil Berliner Studios
- Vinyl Mastering by Sidney Meyer
- 3 Sides of Music
- Gatefold Jacket
- Made in Germany
|Konstantin Krimmel||vocals (baritone)|
Valentin Silvestrov (b. 1937)
Silent Songs (selection)
- Song can heal the ailing spirit - Yevgeni Abramovich Baratynsky
- There were storms and tempests - Yevgeni Abramovich Baratynsky
- La Belle Dame sans Merci - John Keats (transl. Wilhelm Veniaminovich Lewick)
- O melancholy time! Delight for eyes! - Aleksandr Sergeyevich Pushkin (excerpt from "Autumn")
- Farewell, O world, farewell, O earth - Taras Hryhorovych Shevchenko (excerpt from "The Dream")
- I will tell you with complete directness - Osip Emil'evich Mandelstam
- Here's a health to thee, Mary - Aleksandr Sergeyevich Pushkin (after a poem by Bryan Waller Procter)
- Winter Journey - Aleksandr Sergeyevich Pushkin
- The Isle - Percy Bysshe Shelley (transl. Aleksandr Solomonovich Rapoport)
- Autumn Song - Sergei Aleksandrovich Yesenin
- Swamps and marshes - Sergei Aleksandrovich Yesenin
- Winter Evening - Aleksandr Sergeyevich Pushkin