Academic journal article Journal of Singing

ROSENBLÄTTER (Rose Ausländer). Liederzyklus Für Mittlere Stimme Und Klavier

Academic journal article Journal of Singing

ROSENBLÄTTER (Rose Ausländer). Liederzyklus Für Mittlere Stimme Und Klavier

Article excerpt

Born in Switzerland and educated in European music conservatories, David Philip Hefti's areas of expertise are composition, conducting, clarinet, and chamber music. His compositions include works for chamber ensembles, clarinet, orchestra, and two works for solo voice, one of which is Rosenblätter. This work employs a large array of special techniques for both piano and voice that are described in two pages of instructions and explanations of markings at the front of the score. The printed score includes two full copies of the piano/vocal score, an indication that this piece is really chamber music rather than a traditional song cycle that the singer would memorize.

In the initial annotations above for each of the fifteen songs, a tessitura designation is not applicable, and the range designation is that of sung pitches only. In addition to traditional pitches, the vocal line calls for quarter tones, whispering speaking (Sprechstimme), Sprechgesang (as in Schönberg's Pierrot lunaire), singing while inhaling, striking the mouth with the palm while singing, bocca chiusa, and vocal fry. The pianist first prepares the piano with three rubber wedges damping the three lowest strings, and then follows instructions to play harmonics, pizzicato, fingertip glissandos inside the piano, depressing the damper pedal violently so that the strings begin to vibrate, striking powerfully under the keyboard with the palm of hand so that the strings begin to vibrate, striking the strings with felt mallets, striking the strings with wire brushes, making a continuous glissando with wire brushes, and shouting. …

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