Welcome to the official Singerreise webpage! Join in the discussion as we talk about the life of an opera singer, and as we learn about Schubert's masterpiece Winterreise.

Entertain, Educate, Encourage

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

#3 - Gefrorne Tränen (009)

On our march through Winterreise, for this article we get to talk about number 3, "Gefrorne Tränen." If you need to catch up, here's the first two pieces, "Gute Nacht" and "Die Wetterfahne." Here's a few interesting bits for #3!

The title of the piece is "Gefrorne Tränen," which means "frozen tears."

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Writing in a translation #3 - Old and new technology (008)

Here we have the third article in a series on writing a translation into our score. If you missed the first two articles, you can find the first one here, and the second one here.

This article deals with the last two tools on our list: a language dictionary and a laptop.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Writing in a translation #2 - Finding a good starting translation (007)

Welcome back! This is the second article in a series about writing a translation into your score. In the previous article we talked about the Why, the When, and some of the obvious tools necessary.

Now for a trickier part. We will need a starting translation at hand. There's a number of options here. Roughly, translations will fall into four types: Poetic or freeform, singable, line-by-line, and word-for-word.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Writing in a translation #1 - Why we do it, and the tools we need (006)

This is the first article in a series about the nuts and bolts of writing in a translation into a score. It's a standard part of preparing a score for that first day of an opera rehearsal, or preparing a piece to work on with a teacher. I'm going to get into some pretty boring details here, and share my habits and experience. But stick with me! You may pick up something useful here! Today we'll talk about the Why, the When, and the tools that we're going to need.

Friday, November 11, 2016

#2 - Die Wetterfahne (005)

Today's video is for Winterreise No. 2, "Die Wetterfahne." It was mercifully shorter to record than "Gute Nacht" but still had its challenges. Probably the trickiest part was that most of the time, it moved so fast that my mind had to be super focused to get a take with (almost) no mistakes in the German.

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

#1 - Gute Nacht (004)

Here we go! Today's video is the first in the Winterreise song cycle: #1 Gute Nacht. Before we get into the performance itself, I'll highlight just a few things.

Of course, I'm not a scholar. Here, at the start of the Singerreise project, I can't give you a full analysis, line-by-line of the significance of every dot and wiggle on the page. You probably wouldn't want to read that, either. If you did, you'd buy a book on the subject on Amazon. Instead, you're here for my biased, unfiltered opinions, and the opinions of anyone who leaves comments. I'm hoping that those will be far more interesting, and it that you might get more out of the experience that way.

Now that I've sufficiently lowered your expectations, here's a few thoughts on Gute Nacht:

Monday, November 7, 2016

First impressions - Background

This is the third article in a series of first impressions. Check out my remarks about music and text, too!

To put Winterreise into a context, I'm going to use two resources for now, and add more as I go. The first is the one everyone goes to first - Wikipedia - and the second, a published book on the subject.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

First Impressions - Text

Okay, now that we've talked about music, let's talk about the text in Winterreise. I'll get into the specifics of each song as we go, but I did want to get a general, unedited idea of what is going on in this poetry.

Saturday, November 5, 2016

First Impressions - music

Here's a report on some first impressions of Winterreise.

Disclaimer: Prior to starting this project, my experience with Winterreise is actually pretty limited. I've performed sung a few songs from it, taught a couple more, and listened to it once in college to pass a test, promptly forgetting all but the most common knowledge. So I'm coming into this with pretty fresh eyes, and we get to unpack it together.

For these first impressions, I'll talk about it in three parts: the music, the poetry, and the background and history of the piece.

Friday, November 4, 2016

Singerreise 003 - A word about facial hair

Greetings all! We start off Friday morning with a new Singerreise video! This one is about facial hair, and, well, maybe you should just see it.

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Singerreise 002 video posted!

Winterreise at-a-glance

Today we're going to do a quick overview of Winterreise.

Straight off, let's get the basics down. Winterreise is a song cycle in German, composed in 1827 by Franz Schubert, who used a text by the poet Wilhelm Müller. Got all that? No? Okay let's try that again.