Schubert Schwanengesang, D. 957

Schwanengesang (Swan song) D. 957, is the title of a posthumous collection of songs by F. Schubert. Named by its first publisher Tobias Haslinger, presumably wishing to present it as Schubert's final musical testament to the world. Unlike the earlier Die schöne Müllerin and Winterreise, it contains settings of three poets, Ludwig Rellstab (1799–1860), Heinrich Heine (1797–1856) and Johann Gabriel Seidl (1804–1875). Schwanengesang was composed 1828 and published in 1829 just a few months after the composer's death on 19 November 1828. In the original manuscript in Schubert's hand, the first 13 songs were copied in a single sitting, on consecutive manuscript pages, and in the standard performance order. All the song titles are by Schubert, as Heine did not give names to the poems. Franz Liszt later transcribed these songs for solo piano. Schubert also set to music a poem named Schwanengesang D. 744 by Johann Senn, unrelated to this collection. The original names of the pieces, and their common translations, are:

  1. Liebesbotschaft (Message of Love)
  2. Kriegers Ahnung (Warrior's foreboding)
  3. Frühlingssehnsucht (Longing in spring)
  4. Ständchen (Serenade)
  5. Aufenthalt (Dwelling place)
  6. In der Ferne (In the distance)
  7. Abschied (Farewell)
  8. Der Atlas (Atlas)
  9. Ihr Bild (Her image)
  10. Das Fischermädchen (The fisher-maiden)
  11. Die Stadt (The city)
  12. Am Meer (By the sea)
  13. Der Doppelgänger (The doppelganger)
  14. Die Taubenpost (also D. 965a, Pigeon post) 
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Recordings

Schwanengesang, D.957 - 8. Der Atlas
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Schwanengesang, D.957 - I. Message of Love
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Schwanengesang, D.957 - 10. Das Fischermädchen
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Schwanengesang, D.957 - II. Warrior's foreboding
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Schwanengesang, D.957 - 9. Ihr Bild
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Schwanengesang, D.957 - III. Longing in Spring
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Schwanengesang, D.957 - 11. Die Stadt
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Schwanengesang, D.957 - IV. Serenade
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Schwanengesang, D.957 - 12. Am Meer
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Schwanengesang, D.957 - V. Dwelling Place
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Schwanengesang, D.957 - 13. Der Doppelgänger
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Schwanengesang, D.957 - VI. In the distance
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Schwanengesang, D.957 - Complete performance
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Schwanengesang, D.957 - VII. Farewell
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Schwanengesang, D.957 - VIII. Atlas
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Schwanengesang, D.957 - IX. Her Image
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Schwanengesang, D.957 - X. The Fisher-maiden
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Schwanengesang, D.957 - XI. The City
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Schwanengesang, D.957 - XII. By the Sea
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Schwanengesang, D.957 - XIII. The Double
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Schwanengesang, D.957 - XIV. Pigeon Post
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Schwanengesang, D.957 - IV. Serenade (piano arr.)
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Samples


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