Tag Archives: Romanticism

What I’ve Been Singing: Le Spectre de la Rose: Les Nuits d’Eté: Berlioz


I had a first-time try last Friday at singing some of the songs from Hector Berlioz’ song cycle Les Nuits d’Eté (Summer Nights) the texts for which came from six poems composed by Theophile Gautier.

I’ve had a CD for some years of the song cycle recorded by the late great Janet Baker, so I was not entirely unfamiliar with it. I never thought at the time that I’d one day be singing it.

The theme of the cycle is love, its progress from innocence to loss and renewal. The second song of the cycle, Le Spectre de la Rose, began as a work for piano – Afforderung zum Tanz (Invitation to the Dance) – written, in 1819, by Carl Maria von Weber. Continue reading

Posted in Music, Opera, Romanticism, Singing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Friday Fictioneers 100 Word Flash Fiction Challenge: The Grand Tour


I went travelling. The Grand Tour, they called it. All the rich young men went and marvelled at ruins, as fashion dictated. Continue reading

Posted in Short Story Writing, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 24 Comments

What I’m Singing: Schumann’s Song Cycle Liederkreis


I’ve just started the challenging task of learning to sing Robert Schumann’s Liederkreis – a song cycle of 12 songs (liede). The song in the You Tube video is song 5 of the cycle and it’s sung by lyric soprano Barbara Bonney. She’s one of my favourite sopranos. She has a clear, sweet, natural-sounding voice and whatever she is singing, she makes sound effortless. My homework this week was to learn songs 1-3, but I think Mondnacht (Moonlit Night) (song 5 in the cycle) is going to be my favourite. Continue reading

Posted in Liede, Music, Singing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments