Cover image for A companion to Schubert's Schwanengesang : history, poets, analysis, performance
A companion to Schubert's Schwanengesang : history, poets, analysis, performance
Chusid, Martin.
Publication Information:
New Haven, Conn. : Yale University Press, [2000]

Physical Description:
ix, 230 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm
General Note:
Includes the German words of the songs with English translations.
The origin and early reception of Schwanengesang / Walburga Litschauer -- The poets of Schwanengesang : Rellstab, Heine, and Seidl / Martin Chusid -- Repetition and correspondence in Schwanengesang / Edward T. Cone -- Texts and commentary / Martin Chusid -- The sequence of the Heine songs and cyclicism in Schwanengesang / Martin Chusid -- On singing Schwanengesang / Walther Dürr and Martin Chusid -- The three styles of Schwanengesang : a pianist's perspective / Steven Lubin -- A Schwanengesang discography / Richard LeSueur.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
ML410.S3 C65 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



Schwanengesang, collected as a song "cycle" and published shortly after Schubert's death, is one of the composer's most beloved works. In this book Martin Chusid and other distinguished Schubert scholars and performers -- Edward T. Cone, Walther Durr, Walburga Litschauer, and Steven Lubin -- provide a rich appreciation of the musical and literary qualities of these miniature masterpieces.

The Companion contains commentaries on each of the fourteen songs as well as essays on performing the song cycle, the three poets who wrote the lyrics (Rellstab, Heine, and Seidl), and issues surrounding the formal structure of the cycle and reordering of the Heine songs. Also included in the volume is the complete original German poetry with a new English translation, a critical examination of the existing literature about each song, a list by Richard LeSueur of all the complete recordings of the cycle on LP and CD, and an extensive bibliography.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

Schwanengesang ("Swan Song") is the name given by a Viennese publisher to Franz Schubert's last 14 songs (of more than 600), composed from August to October in 1828. Since Schubert created and perfected the art song, and since he has never been surpassed, these works have taken a special place in the repertory. Singers regularly perform them, either individually or as a set, and more than 50 recordings of them are available. It is good therefore to have this book of commentary, even if its tone and content do not fit the avuncular connotation of the title word "companion." The book is really a companion to Chusid's recent edition of the Schwanengesang manuscript and first edition. As such it offers insightful discussions of the work's history, text-music relationship, and performance practice. Though beginning music students and general readers will find Maurice J.E. Brown's Schubert Songs (1969) or Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau's Schubert: A Biographical Study of His Songs (Eng. tr., CH, Nov'77) more companionable than the present volume, upper-division undergraduate music majors, graduate students, and music professionals should benefit from the in-depth discussions of these songs' musical and literary qualities. M. Meckna; Texas Christian University