Ian Bostridge

Schubert: The Wanderer

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AllMusic Review by

Since he made his debut as a Schubert singer in 1993 on Volume 20 of Hyperion's Schubert Edition, Ian Bostridge has gone on to record eight more discs of Schubert's songs. First there was a Die schöne Müllerin with Graham Johnson for Hyperion followed by seven discs for EMI: two volumes of stand-alone songs with Julius Drake, a second Die schöne Müllerin with Mitsuko Uchida, a Winterreise with Leif Ove Andsnes, and three discs coupling songs and piano sonatas with Andsnes as both accompanist and soloist. This 2008 two-disc set drops the sonatas and joins the songs from the latter three discs in a program of nearly seamless lyrical beauty. Bostridge is a tenor with a remarkably smooth, round voice and a delivery of consummate warmth and loveliness. Almost as much an actor as a musician, Bostridge's interpretations are intensely expressive. The joy of Ständchen, D. 889; the terror of Der Tod und das Madchen, the sorrow of Wer nie sein Brot mit Tränen ass, D. 478; the humor of Lachen und Weinen, D. 777; the ecstasy of Die Sterne, D. 939; and all the other myriad emotions contained in Schubert's songs are virtually tangible in Bostridge's performances. Andsnes is an adept accompanist who supports as well as challenges the singer. Only four things interrupt the lyrical beauty of Bostridge's singing: Andsnes' sensitive performances of the three short solo piano pieces near the end of the second disc and Bostridge's touching recitation in German of the melodrama Abschied von der Erde, D. 829, which concludes the second disc. Captured in clear, vivid sound by EMI, these recordings should be heard by everyone who enjoys great singing.

Track Listing - Disc 1

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1
13:10
2
5:44
3
2:32
4
2:47
5
3:50
6
3:15
7
2:54
8
5:19
9
2:24
10
3:31
11
6:12
12
1:26
Harfenspieler I ("Wer sich der Einsamkeit ergibt"), song for voice & piano (two versions), D. 478 (Op. 12/1)
13
3:51
14
4:03
15
1:56

Track Listing - Disc 2

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1
2:55
2
7:25
3
6:00
4
6:06
5
8:05
6
3:45
7
1:49
8
1:31
9
2:28
10
1:16
11
1:55
12
0:53
13
4:27
14
2:19
15
2:47
16
2:39
blue highlight denotes track pick