The ballade Goethe puts in the mouth of the girl “Mignon”, Kennst du das Land, wo die Zitronen blühn?… (Do you know the land where the lemon trees bloom?…) in his novel “Wilhelm Meister’s Apprenticeship” is one of the most moving poetic narrations ever written. Mignon, born in Italy, was abducted by vagabonds and taken to Germany. While held, she was forced to sing and dance in a travelling variety company. In her solitude and melancholy, Mignon yearns for her country, Italy, and sings the fantasy of its landscapes.
Goethe’s poem stimulated the creativity of many composers of his time, and other times, not just German-speaking composers drawn by the beauty of the poem, but also creators in other countries such as Poland, Russia, Spain and France, writing in their languages.
A selection is offered here of 12 masterly songs for a poetry of genius, in a subtly studied interpretation by two exceptional artists: mezzosoprano Marina Rodríguez Cusí and pianist Marisa Blanes.
CARL FRIEDRICH ZELTER (1758-1832)
Kennst du das Land, wo die Zitronen blühn…
LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN (1770-1827)
FRANZ SCHUBERT (1797-1828)
ROBERT SCHUMANN (1810-1856)
FRANZ LISZT (1811-1886)
CHARLES GOUNOD (1818-1893)
STANISLAW MONIUSZKO (1819-1872)
Mezwanie do Neapolu
PYOTR IL’YICH CHAIKOVSKI (1840-1893)
Canción de Mignon
FELIPE PEDRELL (1841-1922)
HENRI DUPARC (1848-1933)
Romance de Mignon
HUGO WOLF (1860-1903)
AMBROISE THOMAS (1811-1896)
Connais-tu le pays…?