Composed in the 1880s, prior to the First Symphony, Erinnerung (“Remembrance”) is one of the early songs of Gustav Mahler. It is the second in a collection of fourteen Lieder und Gesänge (“Songs and Airs”) published in 1892. The text, by the German poet, Richard Leander (1830-1889), reflects on the intermingling of love and song.
Mahler’s setting is shrouded in dreamy melancholy and quiet anguish. The lamenting melody drifts over a hypnotic stream of triplets. One phrase anticipates the somber funeral march which opens Mahler’s Fifth Symphony. Interestingly, the song begins in F minor and concludes a whole step higher in G minor.
This 1972 recording features the German lyric baritone, Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, accompanied by Leonard Bernstein:
- Mahler: Erinnerung, Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, Leonard Bernstein Amazon