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Thomas Hampson / Twenty Songs

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Songs I - III

The awakening of love together with the irony of love are established in the first three songs of the cycle. Despite the invocation of spring and the delightful fantasies about the rapture of love, impending doom also lurks beneath the surface of Schumann's deceptively simple melody and Heine's lush Romantic imagery: there are already dissonances in Im wunderschönen Monat Mai and among the natural symbols evoked is the nightingale, whose song symbolizes the call of death.


Im wunderschönen Monat Mai,
Als alle Knospen sprangen,
Da ist in meinem Herzen
Die Liebe aufgegangen.

In the lovely month of May,
When all the buds were blooming,
Then in my heart
Did love well up.

Im wunderschönen Monat Mai,
Als alle Vögel sangen,
Da hab ich ihr gestanden
Mein Sehnen und Verlangen.

In the lovely month of May,
When all the birds were singing,
Then did I to her confess
My longing and desire.

Twenty Songs : I-III : IV-VI : VII - XII : XIII-XVIII : IXX-XX