Schumann: Frauenliebe und -leben, Op 42; Dichterliebe, Op 48; 6 Lieder

Reviewed on Tue 08 Mar, 2016

In Alice Coote’s experienced hands Dichterliebe brings forth the full emotional range of love’s inner torments through her burnished timbre. The frisson of live performance is palpable throughout, with singer and accompanist sparking off each other to compellingly fuse Heine’s lyrics and Schumann’s music.

Mark DeVoto enthusiastically greeted Dorothea Röschmann and Mitsuko Uchida’s Decca recording of Frauenliebe und –leben (reviewed on 5 February 2015). To my ears, this live recording from Alice Coote and Christian Blackshaw is no less impressive, such is their deep feeling for both texts and accompaniment. A selection of six love songs form their own delightful entrée to the all-Schumann recital, with even the slightest Lied leaving its mark in this self-styled bouquet. In Coote’s experienced hands Dichterliebe brings forth the full emotional range of love’s inner torments through her burnished timbre. The frisson of live performance is palpable throughout, with singer and accompanist sparking off each other to compellingly fuse Heine’s lyrics and Schumann’s music. Atmospheric recording, authoritative notes from Richard Stokes, and texts and translations complete this searching yet deeply satisfying release.
–Evan Dickerson