Adelaide, Opus 46

Песня «Аделаида», соч.46 на слова Фридриха фон Маттиссона возникла в 1795 или в 1796 году. Изданная в 1797 году с посвящением автору текста, она сразу же завоевала широчайшую популярность, которой заслуженно пользуется и поныне. По строению «Аделаида» приближается к оперной или концертной арии (очевидно, образцом для Бетховена послужили некоторые моцартовские арии) – недаром она в первом издании была названа кантатой.

Несколько сентиментальная лирика стихотворения получила воплощение в двух контрастирующих разделах песни – мечтательном Larghetto, близком экспозиции и разработке сонатной формы и напоминающем медленные части бетховенских инструментальных циклов (например, Adagio неоконченной боннской сонатины для фортепьяно, WoO 51), и исполненным пылкого и страстного чувства Allegro molto.

Дитрих Фишер-Дискау, баритон
Jörg Demus, фортепиано

Adelaide, the most famous of Beethoven's lieder, was composed in 1794 or 1795. Indeed, the song was apparently one of his own favorites; he identified it as such in a letter to the poet Friedrich von Matthisson, and he himself played the accompaniment in an 1815 concert in celebration of the Empress of Russia's birthday.

The song is structured like a sonata in miniature, with a middle passage that goes through several keys. While at first consideration the text seems to call for a strophic setting, Beethoven's through-composed treatment imbues the words and descriptions in the poem with an extra measure of color and expressivity. The first verse of the setting, for example, in which the poet describes wandering in a garden during a spring night, is tranquil; in the second, when he describes seeing the face of his beloved in the grandeur of nature, the music is far more stately; in the third, the piano vividly depicts both rushing waves and the song of the nightingales. Throughout, however, the overall tone, one of ecstatic contemplation, is the same. One of the song's most important unifying elements is the tender repetition of the name "Adelaide."

(All Music Guide)

The work is written for a tenor or soprano voice and piano, though it is also performed in transposed versions by other voices.

The text of "Adelaïde" is an early Romantic poem written in German by Friedrich von Matthisson (1761–1831). The poem expresses an outpouring of yearning for an idealized and apparently unattainable woman.

    Einsam wandelt dein Freund im Frühlingsgarten,
    Mild vom lieblichen Zauberlicht umflossen,
    Das durch wankende Blüthenzweige zittert,

    In der spiegelnden Flut, im Schnee der Alpen,
    In des sinkenden Tages Goldgewölke,
    In Gefilde der Sterne strahlt dein Bildnis,

    Abendlüftchen im zarten Laube flüstern,
    Silberglöckchen des Mais im Grase säuseln,
    Wellen rauschen und Nachtigallen flöten,

    Einst, o Wunder! entblüht auf meinem Grabe,
    Eine Blume der Asche meines Herzens.
    Deutlich schimmert auf jedem Purpurblättchen:

The poem clearly struck a chord with Beethoven, whose personal life often centered on his yearnings for idealized and unattainable women. The letter of thanks that Beethoven wrote to the poet testifies to his deep emotional engagement with this poem.