Notes & Reviews:
The Gramophone Award-winning partnership of Gerald Finley and Julius Drake turns to perhaps the most celebrated song-cycle of them all. Schubert's Winterreise is a masterpiece of despair, astonishing in its bleakness and enthrallingly mesmerizing as the journey continues. Finley brings all his considerable dramatic powers to his performance - and all but submerges them under the ice. Winterreise is the second of Schubert's two great song cycles on William Müller's poems, the earlier being Die schöne Müllerin. The work's tone echoes the composer's own mood, as it was written during a particularly melancholic period in Schubert's life.
International Record Review, March 2014
One of the finest [Winterreises] I have ever heard. The merits of Finley's singing are well known. The beauty of his voice is a good place to start, and even referring to such matters as intonation and line seems impertinent when dealing with singing such as this.
The Observer, 16th March 2014
Finley's [reading] is inward, poised, heartbreaking in holding back. The more quietude he brings to each song...the more potent his reading. Julius Drake, accompanying, is equally lyrical, fluent, expressive. Neither lets the music shout...The disc lends itself to repeated exploration.
Gramophone Magazine, April 2014
Finley can exercise his lyrical powers in such songs as 'Der Lindenbaum'...but it is not a lyrical talent alone: more to the point, it is the spectrum of tonal colouring, inflection and instinctive phrasing which lend this performance of Winterreise such an absorbing sense of inner communion with the soul.
BBC Music Magazine, May 2014
Perhaps more than any other recording the singer and the pianist are in equilibrium...if often sounds as if Julius Drake has just had an idea - and they are all good ones - and Gerald Finley picks up on it; or vice versa...This, to my mind the greatest of all bleak works of art, here receives its perfect rendering.
American Record Guide, July/August 2014
Canadian baritone Gerald Finley and British pianist Julius Drake have established themselves as an unsurpassed interpretive partnership and have recorded a magnificent array of superb song programs for Hyperion. I had eagerly anticipated their performance of Winterreise at Jordan Hall in Boston earlier this year and found it so excellent that I could hardly wait to hear their recording. I expected it also to be excellent. I was right. His beautifully burnished and lustrously clear voice projects solemnity, dignity, and expressiveness as he sings of loneliness and grief. His singing, whether in hushed phrases or full-throated splendor, shows him to be a consummate artist; and Drake proves himself once again to be the ideal collaborator.
Recording information: All Saints' Church, East Finchley, London (02/26/2013-02/28/2013).
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Works DetailsSchubert, Franz : Winterreise, D 911/Op. 89
- Performers: Julius Drake (Piano); Gerald Finley
- Notes: All Saints' Church, East Finchley, London (02/26/2013-02/28/2013)
- Running Time: 70 min. 26 sec.
- Period Time: Romantic
- Form: Vocal
- Written: 1827