My knowledge of classical music is not very comprehensive – just pieces here and pieces there that I know and love. I know I’ve barely scratched the surface but I do know this artist, Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau and when news came at the weekend of his death, I listened to some of his music again.
He is most famous for his singing of Schubert lieder and thanks to the magic of libraries and the internet you can hear and see him performing still. Christchurch Libraries has a great collection of his work.
There have been many obituaries which detail his life – like this from the Telegraph. Perhaps the best obituary is to listen to him perform the beautiful song An die musik
Oh lovely Art, in how many grey hours,
When life’s fierce orbit ensnared me,
Have you kindled my heart to warm love,
Carried me away into a better world!
How often has a sigh escaping from your harp,
A sweet, sacred chord of yours
Opened up for me the heaven of better times,
Oh lovely Art, for that I thank you!
So sad. Such an amazing singer. My favourite performance – Zemlinsky’s ‘Lyric Symphony’ with Fisher-Dieskau and Julia Varady with the Berlin Philharmonic conducted by Lorin Maazel (not in the library catalogue) – a beautiful and sensuous symphonic song cycle to words by Rabindrinath Tagore.