The Songs without Words series, which Mendelssohn produced and published beginning in 1830, acts as a highly intimate musical journal in which the composer articulated very accurately musical ideas that he claimed had no language counterpart. These ideas included tone colors and relationships between them; modulation, repetition, and variation of key signatures; symmetrical structure; and many other topics.
Mendelssohn's friend Goethe called these songs "poetic prose." Others have referred to them as "pictures," "tableaux," or "vignettes." They combine poetry with music in an abstract way, using words as instruments for expressing musical ideas. The texts are by Friedrich Schiller for the first song and then various others. Mendelssohn himself wrote some of the poems for these songs.
Mendelssohn was inspired to write these songs after reading Schiller's "Ode to Joy" in which the poet uses music as a metaphor for joy. Mendelssohn wanted to do the same but use actual music rather than metaphors, so he wrote several songs with no text at all, setting phrases from Schiller's ode to music. He called this series of songs "Pictures from Poetry" to distinguish them from his other compositions.
These songs have no traditional form, but most of them do have a beginning, middle, and end.
Songs Without Words by Felix Mendelssohn/Composers The Lieder ohne Worte, or "Songs without Words," are Mendelssohn's most major addition to the solo piano canon, accounting for over forty pieces (almost one-quarter of the total number of works he created for that instrument). The composer is responsible for codifying a...
Songs Without Words (Lieder ohne Worte) is a series of short lyrical piano songs by the Romantic composer Felix Mendelssohn, written between 1829 and 1845. His sister, Fanny Mendelssohn, and other composers also wrote pieces in the same genre. These songs are often called "Mendelssohn Lieder" or "Fanny Mendelssohn Lieder".
They have been popular throughout Europe and the United States since their first publication. Many musicians, including Franz Liszt, conductors, and singers have recorded them. The songs have been used in films, television shows, and advertisements.
People sometimes say that these songs are "melodic with no lyrics", but this would be more accurately stated as "lyrical without words". They are still poems with clear subjects and themes expressed through imagery and melody.
Mendelssohn's original texts were written in German, but some are also set to music in other languages, including English, French, and Italian. A few years after Mendelssohn died, his friend, the poet Paul Heyse, wrote new words for several songs from the album Heiliger Dankgesang (Holy Songbook), which include "O Menschheit" (Oh Humanity). These words are now generally accepted as part of the standard text for Mendelssohn's songs.
Song Without Words No. 1 by Felix Mendelssohn. Songs Without Words, German Lieder ohne Worte, is a collection of 48 songs created by Felix Mendelssohn for solo piano rather than vocal. During the composer's lifetime, a portion of the collection (36 songs) was published in six volumes. The remaining 12 songs were published after Mendelssohn's death in 1847.
Mendelssohn wrote most of these songs between 1830 and 1842 while he was an apprentice with Joseph Marx at the court of King Frederick William III of Prussia. They are among his best-known compositions, often referred to as "Mendel's Dream Songs."
The songs are characterized by their simplicity and directness. They deal with various subjects such as love, grief, happiness, and freedom. Some of them have become popular hymns including "O Lord, Our God" and "Wachet Auf".
Mendelssohn did not intend these songs to be performed; they were written for himself alone to enjoy. However, some friends and family members knew some of the songs well enough to sing them on request. This may have happened when Mendelssohn played some of the songs for others. He may also have sung some of the songs himself.
Felix Mendelssohn was born on January 31, 1809 in Mönchengladbach, Germany.
Based on William Shakespeare's play of the same name, Mendelssohn composed this music composition at two stages of his life. He composed his overture, Op. 21, in 1826, at the start of his career, and incidental music, Op. 61, 16 years later, which contains his renowned Wedding March.
Mendelssohn was a prolific composer who wrote numerous pieces for orchestra, piano, voice, and other instruments. His work spans multiple genres including opera, oratorio, choral music, symphonies, concertos, anthems, and more. He is particularly known for his string quartets, which have been performed and recorded by many famous musicians such as Yehudi Menuhin, Vladimir Horowitz, Paul Kantor, and Isaac Stern.
Mendelssohn was born on January 2, 1789, in Leipzig, Germany. He died on April 4, 1847, in Berlin, Germany. Mendelssohn came from a family of prominent musicians: his father, Moses Mendelssohn, was a well-known violinist and composer in his own right while his older brother Daniel was also a notable musician.
Mendelssohn first learned to play the piano at the age of six from his father, who was then hired by the director of a local theater to provide musical accompaniment for performances there.
Songs Without Words, German Lieder ohne Worte, is a collection of 48 songs created by the German composer Felix Mendelssohn for solo piano rather than vocal. The remaining 12 pieces were published later in one volume.
Mendelssohn began writing songs without words in late 1829 when he was twenty years old. He had just returned from studying with Carl Friedrich Bachmann in Leipzig where he became friends with Robert Schumann, who would go on to be one of the leading composers of the Romantic era. Mendelssohn wrote songs without words because he wanted to write music that would not be overshadowed by those by Schumann or Beethoven. He also wanted to prove to his friend Schumann that a song could be successful without any text at all.
Felix Mendelssohn died in October 1847 at the age of 34. He had been suffering from tuberculosis since he was 19 years old and his death came as a great shock to his family and friends.
Songs Without Words has been regarded as one of the first examples of a modern song cycle. It is believed that Richard Wagner was greatly influenced by these songs when he wrote his own cycle of twelve pieces titled Die Walküre (The Valkyrie).
August of 1829 He now claims that Mendelssohn's decision to finish his overture on December 16 was "no ordinary accident." "The composer could not have seen this for himself because he visited Staffa in August 1829, but it is conceivable he heard about it through the boatmen who transported him there," he explained.
Mendelssohn wrote his overture while he was staying with a friend in Hamburg, Germany, who had a house on the Baltic Sea island of Staffa. The friend invited Mendelssohn to come and see the island, so he packed some of his belongings into a cart and set off for the ferry crossing. However, when he reached the island he decided not to go to the house because there were no rooms available and instead walked around taking in the scenery. While he was out walking one day he happened upon some fishermen repairing their net on the shore near where he was standing. The sound of the pounding surf and the rustling trees made up Mendelssohn's mind for him; he knew immediately what kind of an overture he wanted to write and went back home right away to start work on it. He finished the score in just over a week's time and then played it for his friend who was very impressed by it. After hearing how well the piece had turned out, Mendelssohn decided to send it to a publisher in Berlin but before doing so he decided to submit it to some famous people as samples.