This recital CD is a traversal of various settings of the Mignon texts from Goethe’s ‘Wilhelm Meisters Lehrjahre’, the German master’s second great bildungsroman, in which the eponymous hero is drawn to the young maid, Mignon.
The most famous verses are the words of Mignonherself, including the most well-known: ’Kennst du das Land?’ Apart from the everpopular Schubert settings, this disc includes settings by Beethoven, Schumann, Wolf,Tchaikovsky, Liszt and the youthful Alban Berg.
This recital CD is presented by German label Bella Musica Edition and distributed worldwide by Naxos. Bella Musica edition- Antes edition is one of the most powerful German discography houses winning ” Echo Klassik” awards for its productions for years . It is a German discography award for the best CD s.
Review CD “Mignon”
Davor Schopf, Croatian Radio, Third Programme, The Life of Music, 31 March, 2017
The mezzo-soprano, Nataša Antoniazzo is the only Croatian singer, aside from Dunja Vejzović, to have recorded a CD with German art songs for a foreign discography publisher. She has drawn on the invaluable several-year life and artistic experience in Berlin to achieve an album as an authentic interpreter of the Lied. Her selection, created with the pianist, Mia Elezović, encompasses four Goethe’s poems Mignon set to music by Franz Schubert, Ludwig van Beethoven, Pyotr Illych Tchaikovsky, Robert Schumann, Hugo Wolf, Alban Berg and Franz Liszt. The performances follow and suggestively express the prevailing ambience of Goethe’s verses – the longing for an ideal of peace, love and happiness, the unfulfilled desires, the yearning for hearth, solace, understanding of a kindred spirit – everything that Mignon had longed for was painted by the colours, registers and hues of Nataša Antoniazzo’s exquisite voice.
The distinction between the three Schubert’s songs and the same three by Wolf is easily noticeable; whereby the axiomatic restraint of expression, pertinent to Schubert, gives way to Wolf’s through-composed nature of poetic thought, embraced with appropriate colours of tonality, idiosyncratic harmony and rhythmicality of the piano accompaniment.
Of the four poems Kennst du das Land set to music – through vocal modulation, psychologically motivated declamation of verse and the synchronised piano accompaniment of the interprets – Beethoven’s stands out with a classicalist steadiness, Schumann’s with romanticist elegance, while the longing in Berg’s arrangement assumes dramatic proportions. Liszt’s romanticist songfulness is prominently appreciable in the piano accompaniment, as it is implied in the vocal interpretation.
The singer embellishes the distinctly emotional Nur wer die Sehnsucht kennt by Tchaikovsky (in Russian) with her own Slavic sentiment.