Composer: Schubert Franz

Instruments: Voice Piano

Tags: Song


Download free scores:

Complete. Original Version (for High Voice). Complete Score PDF 9 MB
Complete. Version for Low Voice. Complete Score (low voice, transposed) PDF 4 MB
Complete. Original Version (for High Voice). Complete Score (original/high voice) PDF 8 MB
Selections. Der Lindenbaum (No.5). Complete Score (German lyrics) PDF 0 MBSelections. Der Lindenbaum (No.5). Complete Score (Dutch lyrics) PDF 0 MB
Complete. Version for Medium Voice. Complete Score (medium voice, transposed) PDF 3 MB
Complete. Version for Very Low Voice. Complete Score (very low voice, transposed) PDF 8 MB
Complete. Original Version (for High Voice). Complete Score PDF 6 MB
Selections. 1st Versions. 7. Auf dem Flusse (1st version) PDF 0 MBSelections. 1st Versions. 10. Rast (1st version) PDF 0 MBSelections. 1st Versions. 11. Frühlingstraum (1st version) PDF 0 MBSelections. 1st Versions. 22. Mut (1st version) PDF 0 MBSelections. 1st Versions. 23. Die Nebensonnen (1st version) PDF 0 MB



Selections. Piano (Franz Liszt)Complete. Piano (Robert Wittmann)Der Lindenbaum (No.5). Flute + Guitar (Henk Kok)Der Leiermann (No.24). Recorder(4) (Teuling, Arnold den)Der Lindenbaum (No.5). Violin (Richard Sahla)Complete. Piano four hands (Hugo Ulrich)Complete. Piano (Thomas Beavitt)Selections. Piano (Franz Liszt)Selections. Trombone(3) + Trumpet(3) (Stefan Adams)Wasserflut (No.6). Bassoon + Guitar (Ming-Jui Liu)Wasserflut (No.6). French horn + Piano (Shishov, Ivan)Selections. Cello + Viola + Violin(2) (Büntzly, Gerd)Wasserflut (No.6). Recorder(7) (Jaap Wiebes)Der Wegweiser (No.20). Recorder(7) (Jaap Wiebes)Die Post (No.13). Guitar + Voice (Johann Kaspar Mertz)Gute Nacht (No.1). Piano (Leopold Godowsky)Gute Nacht (No.1). Piano (Leopold Godowsky)
Winterreise (Winter Journey) is a song cycle for voice and piano by Franz Schubert (D. 911, published as Op. 89 in 1828), a setting of 24 poems by Wilhelm Müller. It is the second of Schubert's two great song cycles on Müller's poems, the earlier being Die schöne Müllerin (D. 795, Op. 25, 1823).
Both were originally written for tenor voice but are frequently transposed to other vocal ranges, a precedent set by Schubert himself. The two works pose interpretative demands on listeners and performers due to their scale and structural coherence. Although Ludwig van Beethoven's cycle An die ferne Geliebte (To the Distant Beloved) was published earlier, in 1816, Schubert's cycles hold the foremost place in the genre's history.
Winterreise was composed in two parts, each with twelve songs, the first part in February 1827 and the second in October 1827. The two parts were also published separately by Tobias Haslinger, the first on 14 January 1828, and the second (the proofs of which Schubert was still correcting days before his death on 19 November) on 30 December 1828.
The text consists of poems by Wilhelm Müller. Müller, a poet, soldier and Imperial Librarian at Dessau in Prussia (present-day east-central Germany), died in 1827 aged 33, and probably never heard the first setting of his poems in Die schöne Müllerin (1823), let alone Winterreise. Die schöne Müllerin had become central to the performing repertoire and partnership of Schubert with his friend, the baritone singer Johann Michael Vogl, who introduced Schubert's songs to many people in their tours through Austria in the mid-1820s.
Schubert found the first twelve poems under the title Wanderlieder von Wilhelm Müller. Die Winterreise. In 12 Liedern in an almanack (Urania. Taschenbuch auf das Jahr 1823) published in Leipzig in 1823. It was after he set these, in February 1827, that he discovered the full series of poems in Müller's book of 1824, Poems from the posthumous papers of a travelling horn-player, dedicated to the composer Carl Maria von Weber (godfather of Müller's son F. Max Müller), "as a pledge of his friendship and admiration". Weber died in 1826. On 4 March 1827, Schubert invited a group of friends to his lodgings intending to sing the first group of songs, but he was out when they arrived, and the event was postponed until later in the year, when the full performance was given.
Between the 1823 and 1824 editions, Müller varied the texts slightly and also (with the addition of the further 12 poems) altered the order in which they were presented. Owing to the two stages of composition, Schubert's order in the song-cycle preserves the integrity of the cycle of the first twelve poems published and appends the twelve new poems as a Fortsetzung (Continuation), following Müller's order (if one excludes the poems already set) with the one exception of switching "Die Nebensonnen" and "Mut!". In the complete book edition, Müller's final running-order was as follows:
"Gute Nacht"; "Die Wetterfahne"; "Gefror'ne Thränen"; "Erstarrung"; "Der Lindenbaum"; "Die Post"; "Wasserflut"; "Auf dem Flusse"; "Rückblick"; "Der greise Kopf"; "Die Krähe"; "Letzte Hoffnung"; "Im Dorfe"; "Der stürmische Morgen"; "Täuschung"; "Der Wegweiser"; "Das Wirtshaus"; "[Das] Irrlicht"; "Rast"; "Die Nebensonnen"; "Frühlingstraum"; "Einsamkeit"; "Mut!"; "Der Leiermann".
Thus, Schubert's numbers would run 1–5, 13, 6–8, 14–21, 9–10, 23, 11–12, 22, 24, a sequence occasionally attempted by Hans Joachim Moser and Günther Baum.
Schubert's original group of settings therefore closed with the dramatic cadence of "Irrlicht", "Rast", "Frühlingstraum" and "Einsamkeit", and his second sequence begins with "Die Post". Dramatically, the first half is the sequence from the leaving of the beloved's house, and the second half the torments of reawakening hope and the path to resignation.
In Winterreise Schubert raises the importance of the pianist to a role equal to that of the singer. In particular, the piano's rhythms constantly express the moods of the poet, like the distinctive rhythm of "Auf dem Flusse", the restless syncopated figures in "Rückblick", the dramatic tremolos in "Einsamkeit", the glimmering clusters of notes in "Irrlicht", or the sharp accents in "Der stürmische Morgen". The piano supplies rich effects in the nature imagery of the poems, the voices of the elements, the creatures and active objects, the rushing storm, the crying wind, the water under the ice, birds singing, ravens croaking, dogs baying, the rusty weathervane grating, the post horn calling, and the drone and repeated melody of the hurdy-gurdy.
Many have attempted to explain the reason Schubert composed Winterreise. A possible explanation is documented in a book by Elizabeth Norman McKay, Schubert: The Piano and Dark Keys: "Towards the end of 1822 ... Schubert was very sick, having contracted the syphilis that inevitably was to affect the remainder of his life: his physical and mental health, and the music he was to compose." As detailed below, he worked on Winterreise as he was dying of syphilis.
In addition to his friend Franz von Schober, Schubert's friends who often attended his Schubertiaden or musical sessions included Eduard von Bauernfeld, Joseph von Spaun, and the poet Johann Mayrhofer. Both Spaun and Mayrhofer describe the period of the composition of Winterreise as one in which Schubert was in a deeply melancholic frame of mind, as Mayrhofer puts it, because "life had lost its rosiness and winter was upon him." Spaun tells that Schubert was gloomy and depressed, and when asked the reason replied,
"Come to Schober's today and I will play you a cycle of terrifying songs; they have affected me more than has ever been the case with any other songs." He then, with a voice full of feeling, sang the entire Winterreise for us. We were altogether dumbfounded by the sombre mood of these songs, and Schober said that one song only, "Der Lindenbaum", had pleased him. Thereupon Schubert leaped up and replied: "These songs please me more than all the rest, and in time they will please you as well."
It is argued that in the gloomy nature of the Winterreise, compared with Die schöne Müllerin, there is
a change of season, December for May, and a deeper core of pain, the difference between the heartbreak of a youth and a man. There is no need to seek in external vicissitudes an explanation of the pathos of the Winterreise music when the composer was this Schubert who, as a boy of seventeen, had the imagination to fix Gretchen's cry in music once for all, and had so quivered year by year in response to every appeal, to Mignon's and the Harper's grief, to Mayrhofer's nostalgia. It is not surprising to hear of Schubert's haggard look in the Winterreise period; but not depression, rather a kind of sacred exhilaration... we see him practically gasping with fearful joy over his tragic Winterreise – at his luck in the subject, at the beauty of the chance which brought him his collaborator back, at the countless fresh images provoked by his poetry of fire and snow, of torrent and ice, of scalding and frozen tears. The composer of the Winterreise may have gone hungry to bed, but he was a happy artist.
Schubert's last task in life was the correction of the proofs for part 2 of Winterreise, and his thoughts while correcting those of the last song, "Der Leiermann", when his last illness was only too evident, can only be imagined. However, he had heard the whole cycle performed by Vogl (which received a much more enthusiastic reception), though he did not live to see the final publication, nor the opinion of the Wiener Theaterzeitung:
Müller is naive, sentimental, and sets against outward nature a parallel of some passionate soul-state which takes its colour and significance from the former. Schubert's music is as naive as the poet's expressions; the emotions contained in the poems are as deeply reflected in his own feelings, and these are so brought out in sound that no-one can sing or hear them without being touched to the heart.
Elena Gerhardt said of the Winterreise, "You have to be haunted by this cycle to be able to sing it."
In his introduction to the Peters edition (with the critical revisions of Max Friedlaender), Professor Max Müller, son of the poet Wilhelm Müller, remarks that Schubert's two song-cycles have a dramatic effect not unlike that of a full-scale tragic opera, particularly when performed by great singers such as Jenny Lind (Die schöne Müllerin) or Julius Stockhausen (Winterreise). Like Die schöne Müllerin, Schubert's Winterreise is not merely a collection of songs upon a single theme (lost or unrequited love) but is in effect one single dramatic monologue, lasting over an hour in performance. Although some individual songs are sometimes included separately in recitals (e.g. "Gute Nacht", "Der Lindenbaum" and "Der Leiermann"), it is a work which is usually presented in its entirety. The intensity and the emotional inflections of the poetry are carefully built up to express the sorrows of the lover, and are developed to an almost pathological degree from the first to the last note, something explored (along with the cultural context of the work) by the tenor Ian Bostridge in Schubert's Winter Journey: Anatomy of an Obsession. Over the course of the cycle, grief over lost love progressively gives way to more general existential despair and resignation – the beloved is last directly mentioned only halfway into the work – and the literal winter's journey is arguably at least in part allegorical for this psychological and spiritual one. Wintry imagery of cold, darkness, and barrenness consistently serve to mirror the feelings of the isolated wanderer.
The cycle consists of a monodrama from the point of view of the wandering protagonist, in which concrete plot is somewhat ambiguous. After his beloved falls for another, the grief-stricken young man steals away from town at night and follows the river and steep ways to a coal burner's hut, where he rests before moving on. He comes across a village, passes a crossroads, and arrives at a cemetery. Here being denied even the death on which he has become fixated, he defiantly renounces faith before reaching a point of resignation. Finally he encounters a derelict street musician, the first and only instance in the cycle in which another character is present. The mysterious and ominous nature of the musician, along with the question posed in the last lines, leave the fate of the wanderer open to interpretation.
The two Schubert cycles (primarily for male voice), of which Winterreise is the more mature, are absolute fundamentals of the German Lied, and have strongly influenced not only the style but also the vocal method and technique in German classical music as a whole. The resources of intellect and interpretative power required to deliver them, in the chamber or concert hall, challenge the greatest singers.
Besides re-ordering Müller's songs, Schubert made a few changes to the words: verse 4 of "Erstarrung" in Müller's version read [Schubert's text bracketed]: "Mein Herz ist wie erfroren [erstorben]" ("frozen" instead of "dead"); "Irrlicht" verse 2 read "...unsre Freuden, unsre Wehen [Leiden]" ("pains" instead of "sorrows") and "Der Wegweiser" verse 3 read "Weiser stehen auf den Strassen [Wegen]" ("roads" instead of "paths"). These have all been restored in Mandyczewski's edition (the widely available Dover score) and are offered as alternative readings in Fischer-Dieskau's revision of Max Friedlaender's edition for Peters. A few of the songs differ in the autograph and a copy with Schubert's corrections. "Wasserflut" was transposed by Schubert from F♯ minor to E minor without alteration; "Rast" moved from D minor to C minor and "Einsamkeit" from D minor to B minor, both with changes to the vocal line; "Mut" was transposed from A minor to G minor; "Der Leiermann" was transposed from B minor to A minor. The most recent scholarly edition of Winterreise is the one included as part of the Bärenreiter New Schubert Edition, edited by Walther Dürr, volume 3, which offers the songs in versions for high, medium and low voices. In this edition the key relationships are preserved: only one transposition is applied to the whole cycle.
The following table names the keys used in different editions.
Schubert's Winterreise has had a marked influence on several key works, including Gustav Mahler's Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen and Benjamin Britten's Night-piece. In 1991, Maury Yeston composed both the original music and text of December Songs, a song cycle influenced by Winterreise, on commission from Carnegie Hall for its Centennial celebration. In 1994 Polish poet Stanisław Barańczak published his poems, entitled Podróż zimowa, which – apart from one translation of a work by Müller – were inspired by Schubert's music. 2020 Deutschlandfunk presents a new production of the Winterreise by Augst & Daemgen. In the program Atelier neuer Musik it says: "Hardly any other recording of the Winterreise cycle deals with Müller's texts and Schubert's music in such a radically different way than the reading of the composers and interpreters Oliver Augst and Marcel Daemgen. The focus of the arrangements is not the brilliantly polished beautiful sound of centuries-old traditional musical tradition, but rather its strict breakthrough in order to gain a new, undisguised access to the topicality of old texts and the core of the music.
There are numerous recordings.
Some videotaped performances are also available, including mezzo-soprano Christa Ludwig with Charles Spencer (1994, Art Haus Musik), several by Fischer-Dieskau, one by Hermann Prey with pianist Helmut Deutsch, and a version by Thomas Quasthoff and pianist Daniel Barenboim filmed at the Berlin Philharmonie in 2005. Francisco Araiza tenor and Jean Lemaire (2014 Arthaus) coupled with Schumann's Dichterliebe/studio recording.