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Maria Szymanowska (1789-1831)
Ballades & Romances
AP0260 , DDD - TT: 71'54"
Copyright (R)2011, (C)III 2012
World Premiere Recording

  1. Romance de la Reine Hortense
  2. Le Départ
  3. Complainte d'un aveugle qui demandait l'aumône au Jardin du Roi a Paris
  4. Romance a Joséphine
  5. Peine et Plaisir
  6. Romance du Saule
  7. Ballade
  8. Romance a la nuit
  9. Le connais-tu
  10. Se spiegar potessi
  11. Romance du Prince Galitzine
  12. Casimir le Grand
  13. Hedwige, Reine Polonaise (1374-1399)
  14. Jean Albert, Roi de Pologne (1459-1565)
  15. Histoire du Prince Michael Gliński (1470-1534)
  16. Stefan Czarniecki (1599-1665)
  17. Chant de la Vilia
  18. Chant de la tour
  19. Alpuhara, Ballade
  20. Ondine de Świteź
  21. Cantilene a deux voix

Zapolska Elisabeth, mezzo-soprano
Oort Bart van, fortepiano Broadwood 1825

booklet: Elisabeth Zapolska (French, English, Polish)

When choosing which of Maria Szymanowska's songs to include on this disc, the guiding light was the wish to show their diversity. While remaining attached to some singing practices of the period, the composer and woman of letters started to seek a new musical language, linked more to text content and the style of expression used: lyrical, oratory, ironic, libertine and so forth. Some of them were composed after receiving a commission, notably the five Historical Polish Songs by Niemcewicz, three of which found their way into the famous collection published for the first time in 1816. Others were born in the fever of improvisations, which the writers and performers of the period liked to indulge in at artistic salons. The ballads in Polish contain a large number of verses. They are abridged on this disc in order not to tire the modern listener, while conserving the essence of the story being told. The evident understanding between Szymanowska and Mickiewicz, a close friend, and future husband of her daughter Celina, gave Polish culture a few rare jewels. Szymanowska's repertoire for voice and piano possesses the same qualities as that for piano solo: its richness and modernity is only revealed through the creativity of the performer.