Saturday, May 19, 2012

Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau Passes

Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau was perhaps the greatest singer of lieder of all time.

He passed away yesterday at the age of 86.

He was certainly the most important male singer of art songs of the second half of the 20th century.  He recorded all the lieder of Franz Schubert for male voice, in a legendary series with his longtime accompanist, Gerald Moore.

He sang operas and other vocal music in German, Italian, English, French, Hungarian, Hebrew and Russian.

He was the baritone soloist in many famous premieres, perhaps most notably, in Benjamin Britten's War Requiem, in 1962: I always show this amazing 1951 video of Fischer-Dieskau singing Franz Schubert's Die Erlkonig to my music appreciation classes at UAA: His earliest success with orchestra in the concert hall was with songs of Gustav Mahler.  Here he is, singing Mahler's Songs of a Wayfarer in 1960, with the NHK Orchestra of Japan, performing in Paris, and directed by Paul Kletzki:

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