Franz Schubert

Im Abendrot ("O, wie schön ist deine Welt"), song for voice & piano, D. 799

    Description by Blair Johnston

    Very possibly the best-known "sunset song" in the repertoire (and justly so), Franz Schubert's Im Abendrot, D. 799 was probably composed during late 1824 or early 1825, just before his somewhat improved health allowed him to (once again) move out of his father's house into some rooms of his own. The song, of which two manuscript copies survive (one copy is a little different from the other here and there -- a slight change of tempo indication, a chord revoiced), was published by Antonio Diabelli in December 1832, just over four years after its composer had died.

    Im Abendrot (In the Evening Glow) is a setting of a Karl Lappe poem that Schubert somehow got his hands on long before it was published (Schubert set one other Lappe poem during his lifetime, Die Einsame; it, too, was still unpublished at the time of Schubert's death). The poem is in two quiet stanzas spoken directly to the Deity and set by Schubert in the kind of gentle A flat major that he reserved for some of his most intimate, self-assured Lieder. The song is marked very slow or sehr langsam); the harmonies are simple but richly spaced; a one-measure, ornamented cadence for the piano appears from time to time throughout the song both to provide the singer a chance to breathe and to serve as a kind of verse-end pendant to the appropriately hymnlike melody. The song "goes" nowhere, and in the most glorious way: the pure tone of the opening measure never once wavers, and when, during the second half of the song, some harmonic activity intrudes upon the tranquil scene, A flat major quietly and quickly makes itself visible again like some divine beacon.

    Appears On

    Year Title Label Catalog #
    2018 CAvi-music AVI 8553373
    2018 Warner Classics 9029569020
    2017 Erato 0190295769437
    2017 Wigmore Hall Live WHLIVE 0088
    2017 Oehms Classics OC 1879
    2017 First Hand Records FHR 56
    2016 Deutsche Grammophon 4796438
    2016 Champs Hill Records CHRCD 098
    2016 Wigmore Hall Live WHLIVE 0082
    2016 Deutsche Grammophon 4830394
    2016 Harmonia Mundi HMX 290875061
    2016 Capriccio Records C 5233
    2016 Deutsche Grammophon 4796418
    2016 Deutsche Grammophon 4796018
    2016 Aliud Records ACDBL 0812
    2015 Deutsche Grammophon 4795448
    2015 Warner Classics 553028
    2015 Challenge Classics CC 72645
    2015 Deutsche Grammophon 002894795229
    2013 Deutsche Grammophon 002894791780
    2013 Deutsche Grammophon
    2013 Deutsche Grammophon 4791119
    2012 Decca / Deutsche Grammophon / Universal
    2012 Deutsche Grammophon 4790371
    2012 New York Philharmonic NYP 20120103
    2012 Harmonia Mundi HMC 902141
    2012 Col Legno WWE 3CD20307
    2011 Capriccio Records 7106
    2011 Naxos 8503801
    2010 EMI Classics / Warner Classics 5099945635229
    2010 Newton Classics 8802012
    2010 Gala Records 10067
    2010 Deutsche Grammophon 4778989
    2010 Deutsche Grammophon
    2010 Deutsche Grammophon
    2009 Deutsche Grammophon 4778167
    2009 Deutsche Grammophon
    2009 EMI Classics / Warner Classics 5099926490
    2009 Sony Classical 88697451132
    2009 Haenssler 98590
    2008 Deutsche Grammophon 4777077
    2008 Whiterock / Zebralution
    2008 Deutsche Grammophon / Universal Distribution
    2008 ATMA Classique 2571
    2008 Warner Classics
    2008 Teldec 492412
    2008 RCA Red Seal 732932
    2008 Harmonia Mundi 901991
    2008 Deutsche Grammophon 463503
    2008 Brilliant 93673
    2007 Warner Classics / Warner Classics & Jazz 2564644712
    2007 Musicaphon 56877
    2007 BMG 77716
    2007 Apex
    2006 Naxos Historical 8111093
    2006 Virgin 363298
    2005 Orfeo D'Or 339050
    2005 Hyperion 44201
    2005 Angel Records / EMI Classics 65670
    2005 Warner Classics
    2005 Deutsche Grammophon 4775765
    2005 Deutsche Grammophon
    2005 Deutsche Grammophon 002894775305
    2004 Pentatone 5186132
    2004 Deutsche Grammophon 4770842
    2004 Brilliant 92394
    2003 EMI Music Distribution 67994
    2003 EMI Music Distribution 5679902
    2003 Deutsche Grammophon 4741732
    2003 Arts Music 47664
    2003 Deutsche Grammophon 000004902
    2003 Naxos 8555780
    2002 Orfeo 556021
    2002 Decca 467901
    2002 RCA 63833
    2002 Romophone 81035
    2002 Preiser Records 89239
    2001 Preiser Records 89514
    2001 History 205153
    2001 Capriccio Records 49301
    2001 Capriccio Records 49301
    2001 CRD Records CRD 3464
    2001 Brilliant 99443
    2000 Deutsche Grammophon 463500
    2000 Orfeo 450971
    2000 Orfeo D'Or 529001
    2000 EMI Music Distribution 65196
    1999 Pearl 0034
    1999 BMG 0902668763
    1999 Philips 438528
    1999 Deutsche Grammophon 431476
    1999 Deutsche Grammophon 415188
    1999 Claves 508611
    1998 Deutsche Grammophon 459027
    1998 Deutsche Grammophon 459 068-2GCC10
    1998 Preiser Records 89127
    1998 Preiser Records 89231
    1998 MDG 3210835
    1998 Hyperion 33031
    1997 Deutsche Grammophon
    1997 EMI Classics 5661502
    1997 Deutsche Grammophon 449 747-2GOR
    1997 Preiser Records 89227
    1996 Orfeo 432961
    1996 Capriccio Records 10716
    1995 Myto Records 89011
    1995 Mono Music 89216
    1995 Preiser Records 89208
    1995 Preiser Records 89203
    1995 Romophone 81013
    1995 Teldec 90873
    1995 Orfeo 1811
    1995 EMI Music Distribution 65463
    1994 RCA 62652
    1993 Philips 438511
    1993 Deutsche Grammophon 437225
    1992 VAI Audio 1005
    1992 Deutsche Grammophon 435145
    1991 Deutsche Grammophon / Universal Music Classics and Jazz
    1990 Deutsche Grammophon 431085
    1988 Deutsche Grammophon 4270172
    Deutsche Grammophon 000219202
    Symposium 1366
    Vocal Archives 1153
    Pilz 43529
    Philips 422418
    History 205157
    Hamburger Archiv 10169
    Enterprise 1179
    RCA Victor 7809
    Lys 169/170
    Brilliant 92394/33
    Brilliant 99449
    Brilliant Classics 93673/33
    History 205156
    Vox 7542
    Deutsche Grammophon 429933
    Mono Music 89203
    Deutsche Grammophon 431773
    Philips 411421
    Documents 223209303
    Capriccio Records 49303