Schubert: Winterreise, Op. 89, D. 911 (Live)

Schubert: Winterreise, Op. 89, D. 911 (Live)

Ian Bostridge

Editor's Choice

Considered one of the finest lieder singers of his generation, Ian Bostridge has earned a reputation as a master of the music of Schubert and Britten, as well as an explorer of the more unusual. His singing is marked by a particular care in conveying the colour and meaning of the text, qualities very much in evidence in his 2019 recording of Winterreise, Schubert’s imposing cycle of 24 songs on texts by German poet Wilhelm Müller. Few of Bostridge’s contemporaries can equal his authority in Schubert’s 1827 cycle; in 2014, he published an acclaimed book on the work, and he has performed the songs continually since his debut as a singer, aged 27, in 1993. His winter journey is at once spare and intense, and, in partnership with the great contemporary composer and exquisite pianist Thomas Adès, drawn in the colours of ice and snow. read more
Tracks with this symbol are accompanied by content from the Maestro Listening Guide.


Album review

“Tenor Ian Bostridge has already recorded Schubert's song cycle Winterreise, D. 911, twice, and he has described his relationship with the cycle as an obsession. This third attempt might easily have turned into an overthought disaster, but it most assuredly does not: this is a major Winterreise. There are several major virtues in its favor. Bostridge and Thomas Adès, a wonderful accompanist not at all added simply for his celebrity value, had performed the cycle live for several years before this live version from Wigmore Hall, appeared in 2019. Adès responds confidently to the small details Bostridge has teased out of the music. In his mid-50s, Bostridge's voice has acquired a burnished sound that serves him especially well in Schubert's lower register. Sample the second strain of Gefrorne Tränen with its repeated low C, and you'll find a more natural sound than in other tenor versions, including Bostridge's own. Most important of all is the care Bostridge has lavished on every phrase; and this is all without getting lost in the details. He applies plenty of tempo rubato to bring out individual ideas in the text, and at several points (including the final Der Leiermann) really takes his time, but the basic strophic structure of the songs, and the varied parallelism Schubert superimposes on it, is never lost. Pentatone's live sound is impressive, and this is a must-have Winterreise and a career-making album for Bostridge.”

Album review provided by TiVo. This content is not produced by Primephonic, and any views expressed are the review author’s own.

Record label



    9 August 2019