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Gendered voices: the Liebesfrühling Lieder of Robert and Clara Schumann Boyd, Melinda Jean 1996

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GENDERED VOICES: T H E LIEBESFRUHLING LIEDER OF ROBERT AND C L A R A SCHUMANN by M E LIN DA JEAN BOYD B.Mus., The University of Manitoba, 1994 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF T H E REQUIREMENTS FOR T H E D E G R E E OF MASTER OF ARTS in THE F A C U L T Y OF GRADUATE STUDIES (School of Music) We accept this thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA August 1996 ©Melinda Jean Boyd, 1996 In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British' Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada DE-6 (2/88) Abstract In 1841, Robert and Clara Schumann collaborated on a setting of twelve poems from Friedrich Ruckert's Liebesfhihling. Although these songs were popular in the composers' lifetime, today they are sadly neglected. Rufus Hallmark's 1990 article, "The Riickert Lieder of Robert and Clara Schumann" (19th-century Music, 14:1), draws on manuscript and diary sources, examining the cycle from various points of view, among which gender issues are touched upon from the perspective of performance practice. Taking Hallmark's article as a starting point, this thesis employs more recent feminist and cultural theories to scrutinize the Lieder, as well as the creative partnership, from a gender perspective. Chapter One concentrates on the influence of Western cultural attitudes and the role of gender in the genesis of the Lieder, followed by a detailed inquiry into the choice of texts, and the chronology of the subsequent compositions, confirming the extent of the collaboration. Chapter Two provides a close reading of the gender ambiguity inherent in the imagery and ideological content of Ruckert's poems. Chapter Three proceeds to the musical settings, examining form, harmonic language, melody, rhythm and motivic usage, and how these musical materials interact with the gender ambiguity in the texts. Chapter Four draws on the analysis of the previous two chapters in an attempt to read the Liebesfhihling Lieder as a "song cycle." The thesis concludes with an evaluation of the songs and the creative partnership, laying the foundation for a renewed interest in this unique collection of Lieder. ii TABLE OF CONTENTS Abstract ii Table of Contents iii Acknowledgement iv INTRODUCTION 1 Chapter One Gender and Class 4 Genesis of the Liebesfriihling 11 Chapter Two Riickert's Texts 18 Chapter Three The Schumann Settings 52 Chapter Four Reading the Liebesfriihling Lieder as a "Song Cycle" 113 Epilogue 120 Bibliography 123 Appendix 132 in Acknowledgement This project would not have been possible without the guidance and encouragement of many people. I would like to express my appreciation to my supervisor, Dr. Vera Micznik, and committee members Dr. Richard Kurth and Dr. David Metzer, for their expertise, criticisms, patience, and the spirit of cooperation and support lent to this project. In addition, I would also like to thank Prof. Ursula Rempel and Dr. Delores Keahey (The University of Manitoba), who sparked my interest in women composers. I dedicate this work to my parents, Bill and Lorraine Demman, to Sheila and the late Arthur Devenish, and to my daughters, Caitlin and Christine, for the inspiration and joy they have brought to my life. iv Introduction On 13 September 1841, Robert Schumann presented his wife Clara with a surprise birthday gift: the first published copied of their shared settings of twelve poems from Friedrich Ruckert's Liebesfriihling.1 A musical gift was not unusual in the Schumann household, but the collaborative effort on the part of the two composers was, in many ways, unique. Both Robert and Clara "borrowed" themes from each other in their piano compositions, before and after the Liebesfriihling settings; however, the Liebesfriihling Lieder would prove to be their only joint publication.2 As such, this collection raises a significant number of questions regarding both the compositional process and the resulting songs. My own interest in the Liebesfriihling Lieder stems from my preoccupation with women composers. Despite current research trends and the resurgent interest in women composers, little has been done in the way of formal analysis of their works. This is true for Clara Schumann in particular; long acknowledged as a pre-eminent performer, Clara's role as a composer remains under-explored. 'The Schumann settings were published as Zwolf Gedichte aus F. Riickerts Liebesfriihling fur Pianoforte mil Gesang von Clara und Robert Schumann, Op. 37/12, by Breitkopf & Hartel, 1841. See Table 1 in the Appendix for the individual song titles, order of publication, and attribution. 2See, for example, Robert Schumann's Impromptus on a Theme by Clara Wieck, Op. 5 (1833), and Clara Schumann's Variations on a Theme by Robert Schumann, Op. 20 (1853). The Schumann borrowings also extended to Brahms, Variations on a Theme by Schumann, Op. 9 (1854), which is dedicated to Clara. See Stephen James Smith, "Eloquence, Reference, and Significance in Clara Schumann's Opus 20 and Johannes Brahms' Opus 9" (D.M.A. diss., University of British Columbia, 1994). See also Eric Sams' articles "Did Schumann use Ciphers?" Musical Times 106 (1965): 584-591, and "The Schumann Ciphers," Musical Times 107 (1966): 392-400. 1 Even without this formal analysis, Clara's setting of "Liebst du um Schonheit" is firmly entrenched in the women composers' canon, but the remainder of the collection has been unduly neglected. Joint works occupy a critical wasteland outside the canon: those by a male and female composer are further marginalized. This marginalization is typified by commentators such as Eric Sams. Sams limits his discussion of the Liebesfhihling to Robert's songs, attributing any shortcomings to Clara, and conversely crediting Robert for Clara's contributions (Sams' opinions are discussed in more detail in Chapter 4).3 While researching an earlier essay on Clara's "Liebst du um Schonheit" and "Er ist gekommen," I discovered only one major article dealing with the collection of songs as a whole: Rufus Hallmark's "The Ruckert Lieder of Robert and Clara Schumann," published in 19th-century Music in 1990. Hallmark's essay provides an accurate summary of some of the problems surrounding the Liebesfhihling Lieder: Despite the unique circumstances of its origin and the attendant interest one would expect, these songs are seldom performed as a unit by the requisite two singers. The songs are unsympathetically treated by commentators, in part, I think, because the nature of the group is inadequately appreciated. And because Robert and Clara's collaboration is poorly understood, unwarranted and erroneous speculation about the compositional process has arisen.4 Hallmark addresses some of these issues by investigating manuscript and diary sources, then proceeding to musical and textual analysis. From these sources, he has developed a theory for a gender-based performance of the lieder. Taking Hallmark's theory as a starting point, my investigation of the Liebesfhihling 3Eric Sams, The Songs of Robert Schumann (London: Faber & Faber, 1993), 178-179. 4Rufus Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder of Robert and Clara Schumann," 19th-century Music 14 (1990): 4. 2 Lieder is threefold. First, I wish to examine gender issues from a different perspective than Hallmark's performance theory. Employing feminist and gender theories that have developed since the publication of Hallmark's study will allow a closer examination of nineteenth-century attitudes about gender and how those attitudes influenced Robert and Clara. The genesis of the collection also hinges on gender. Robert and Clara's attraction to Ruckert's poetry seems revealing both for their relationship and for their artistic taste: the love theme is "spoken" from the point of view of a "poet" and his beloved - either separately, alternately, or occasionally together. However, the gender affiliation of the poetic voice is often ambiguous. I believe that the Schumanns recognized that ambiguity, and in turn exploited it in their musical settings. Consequently, the second part of my investigation consists of a detailed analysis of the texts, followed by a formal analysis of Robert and Clara's musical settings. This analysis culminates in the third stage, reading the Lieder as a "song cycle." In approaching the Lieder from a broader cultural perspective, I hope to correct, at least in part, the critical imbalance and to provide a foundation for the re-evaluation and reconsideration of a unique creative partnership and the songs it inspired. 3 Chapter One When dealing with the work of women composers in the nineteenth century, the influence of Western cultural attitudes about gender cannot be underestimated. For the majority of women, access to education, specialized training, the professional ranks and public life was determined less by talent than it was by gender and class. According to Rousseau, women's roles ought to be clearly defined. As paraphrased by Moira Gatens, on his account, a woman: . . . has no need . . . of instruction in the sciences, or in political life. All these aspects of culture are to be managed by men; women's role is merely to reproduce the conditions necessary for the continuation of culture. This involves the bearing, caring, and rearing of children and the provision of the emotional and physical well being of her husband.1 In the male-dominated sphere of art music, women fared no better. Rousseau believed that "women in general do not like any art, are no judges of any, and have no genius."2 Following Rousseau's view, Schopenhauer labelled women "the unaesthetic" because: They really have no bent and receptivity either for music or poetry, or the plastic arts; but when they affect and profess to like such things, it is merely aping for the sake of their keen desire to please.3 Similarly Eduard Hanslick, who apparently admired Clara Schumann as a performer, regarded women composers as insignificant phenomena, lacking creative imagination and musical 'Moira Gatens, Feminism and Philosophy: Perspectives on Difference and Equality (Bloomington and Indianapolis: Indiana University Press, 1991), 13. 2As quoted by Arthur Schopenhauer, "On Women," Parerga andParalipomena, vol. 2, trans. E.J.F. Payne (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1974), 620. 3Schopenhauer, "On Women," 619. 4 invention, and therefore not worthwhile subjects for further discussion or exploration.4 Given these attitudes and overwhelming obstacles such as lack of education, it is remarkable that Clara, or any woman for that matter, dared to cast her hat into the artistic world. There are, of course, exceptions to every rule, as indicated by Clara's early education and later professional career. Her father, Friedrich Wieck, had determined very early in Clara's life that she would be a virtuoso pianist. As far as Wieck was concerned, gender was not a factor: as his first-born, Clara was simply an appropriate and receptive mold into which Wieck could pour his pedagogical talents, proving to the world that he was a master teacher. Wieck's two sons, Alwin (1821-85) and Gustav (1823-84), had "neither her aptitude nor her compliant personality, and were largely ignored while Clara, the eldest child and only daughter, dominated the household."5 Nancy Reich asserts that: The musical training Wieck gave his daughter was thorough and practical; and we would characterize it today as progressive. He planned to develop an all-round musician, not merely a pianist.... Formal lessons in theory, harmony, counterpoint, composition, singing, score reading, and violin began when she was eight and continued for many years. The study of languages was pursued in preparation for future trips to France and England. Several hours a day were reserved for piano lessons (from Wieck), for practicing piano, and for long walks in the fresh air.6 Lessons in composition provided a dual advantage. First, in the highly competitive performance arena, the best way to display one's technique was through music specifically 4See the foreword to Clara Schumann, Sdmtliche Lieder fiir Singstimme undKlavier, bd.l, ed. Joachim Draheim and Brigitte Hoft (Wiesbaden: Breitkopf & Hartel, 1990), 3. 5Nancy B. Reich, Clara Schumann: The Artist and the Woman (Ithaca and London: Cornell University Press, 1985), 38. 6Nancy B. Reich, "Clara Schumann," Women Making Music: The Western Art Tradition, ed. Jane Bowers and Judith Tick (Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1986), 254-255. 5 composed for that purpose. With the exception of only a few songs, all of Clara's published and unpublished works prior to her marriage consist of virtuosic solo piano pieces, and the Piano Concerto in A minor, Opus 7 (1833).7 Secondly, Wieck astutely noted another advantage from his daughter's compositions:: These works also provided a commercial advantage because they could be published and sold to the many amateur pianists in the concert-going public. The amateurs might not play every note of these sheets, but they could at least bring the music into their homes and fancy themselves a Herz or Kalkbrenner [or perhaps Clara Schumann] for the evening.8 The financial rewards from Clara's concerts and publications were substantial enough, but Wieck may have had other incentives as well. Anna Burton speculates that the father lived vicariously through his daughter. Clara's success allowed him to attract high-calibre pupils, thereby increasing his own reputation.9 Despite the fact that Wieck virtually ignored his daughter's "domestic" education, he did not radically militate against convention, nor were his actions without precedence. Clara's seemingly unusual upbringing can instead be attributed to her (and Wieck's) class. In a recent 7Only one published song predates the Schumann marriage. The actual date of composition and location of the autograph are unknown, but the "Walzer fur Gesang und Klavier" was published in Lyser's Liedersammlung, 1834. Nancy Reich lists three other songs, "Alte Heimath," "Der Traum," and "Der Wanderer," all composed in 1831, as lost. See Reich, Clara Schumann: The Artist and the Woman, 298, 301, & 305. It should be noted here that Reich's book, while thorough, is now somewhat dated. "Der Wanderer" has since been recovered, and published in Clara Schumann's Sdmtliche Lieder fur Singstimme und Klavier, bd. 2, ed. Joachim Draheim and Brigitte Hoft (Leipzig: Breitkopf & Hartel, 1992). 8Camilla Cai, "Clara Schumann: 'A Woman Must not Desire to Compose'," The Piano Quarterly 145 (Spring 1989): 55. 9See, for example, Anna Burton, "Robert Schumann and Clara Wieck: A Creative Partnership," Music and Letters 69 (1988): 211-228. 6 study of nineteenth-century women musicians, Nancy Reich found that: Professional women musicians were working women but did not belong to the working class. Most were married to men who accepted, even encouraged their position in the workplace...Almost all professional women musicians were born into families in which members worked together to earn a living and had done so for more than one generation. In these families, the participation of women in professional life was taken for granted.10 A low economic level and professional status also distinguished the artist-musician class women from those of the bourgeois aristocracy: non-professional musicians who, though often gifted, highly skilled, and educated, "neither performed in public, nor published their work."" Fanny Mendelssohn typifies the "bourgeois aristocracy" class. Fanny was accorded the same education and musical training as her brother, but was discouraged from pursuing a professional, public career both as a performer and composer. Members of the Mendelssohn family, particularly Felix and his father, even considered publication to be unsuited to Fanny's social status. In a letter to his mother, dated 24 June 1837, Felix explained: I cannot persuade her to publish anything, because it is against my views and convictions. We have previously spoken a great deal about it, and I still hold the same opinion. I consider publishing something serious (it should at least be that) and believe that one should do it only if one wants to appear as an author one's entire life and stick to it. But that necessitates a series of works, one after the other...Fanny, as I know her, possesses neither the inclination nor the calling of authorship. She is too much a woman, as is proper, and looks after her house and thinks neither about the public nor the musical world nor even about music, unless that primary occupation is accomplished.12 10Nancy B. Reich, "Women as Musicians: A Question of Class," Musicology and Difference: Gender and Sexuality in Music Scholarship, ed. Ruth Solie (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1993), 126. "Ibid. 1 2Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy, Brief aus den Jahren 1833 bis 1847, ed. Paul Mendelssohn Bartholdy and Carl Mendelssohn Bartholdy, 3rd. edition (Leipzig, 1875), 88-89, 7 Fanny was aware of social attitudes long before her brother's proscription. A letter to her fiance, written in October 1829, describes her situation: I now comprehend what Fve always heard and what the truth-speaking Jean Paul has also said: Art is not for women, only for girls; on the threshold of my new life I take leave of this child's playmate."13 Fanny, however, did find a more supportive audience in her husband, court artist Wilhelm Hensel. With encouragement from him and her mother, several collections of her work finally appeared in 1846 and 1847. Still, Fanny sought her brother's approval, writing to him on 9 July 1846: I hope I won't disgrace you through my publishing, as I am no femme libre....Hopefully you will in no way be bothered by it, as I have proceeded, as you see, completely independently, in order to spare you any unpleasant moment. If the venture succeeds, that is, if the compositions please [people], then I know that it will be a great stimulus to me, something I always required in order to publish anything.14 Unfortunately, this newly-found courage came too late, as only seven opus numbers and a few individual pieces were published before Fanny's death in 1847. These few works constitute only a small portion of Fanny's ceuvre, contradicting Felix's earlier statement that she "possessed neither the inclination nor the calling for authorship."15 Despite the fact that Clara had the encouragement of her father, and later of her as quoted in Marcia J. Citron, "The Lieder of Fanny Mendelssohn Hensel," Musical Quarterly 69 (1983): 572. 13Citron, "The Lieder of Fanny Mendelssohn Hensel," 571, note 2. 14Ibid., 573. 1 5 To date, Fanny's publications now total 11 opus numbers, comprised of lieder, piano solos, and the Trio pour Pianoforte, Violin, Violincelle, Op. 11. According to Marcia Citron, "at least 100 lieder are in private collections, mostly in West Germany, and thus far have been inaccessible." See Citron, "The Lieder of Fanny Mendelssohn Hensel," 574. 8 husband, she too suffered from the social pressures that faced women composers. In 1839 she wrote: I once believed I had creative talent, but I have given up this idea; a woman must not desire to compose - there never was one able to do it. Am I intended to be the one? It would be arrogant to believe that. That was something with which only my father tempted me in former days. But I soon gave up believing this.16 Clara subscribed to the belief that women betrayed themselves in their compositions. Of Fanny Mendelssohn's songs, Clara said that "a woman composer can always be recognized as such: that's true of me and others."17 This thought inspired a lack of confidence in her own compositions that would plague Clara for rest of her life. Even the Piano Trio Op. 17 (1846), arguably one of Clara's most powerful works, evoked self-abnegating responses: There is nothing greater than the joy of composing something oneself, and then listening to it. There are some pretty passages in the trio, and I think it is fairly successful as far as form goes....Of course, it is only a woman's work, which is always lacking in force, and here and there in invention. This evening I played Robert's piano quartet and my trio, which seems to me more harmless each time I play it. I received the printed copies of my trio today; but I did not care for it particularly, after Robert's D minor [no. 1, op. 63], it sounded effeminate and sentimental.18 As we shall see later, this ambivalence extended to the Liebesfriihling Lieder. Although Clara often referred to composing as an enjoyable activity, the lack of 1 6Cai, "Clara Schumann: 'A Woman Must not Desire to Compose'," 58. 17Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, Robert Schumann Words and Music: The Vocal Compositions, trans. Reinhard G. Pauly (Portland: Amadeus Press, 1988), 114. 18Carol Neuls-Bates, ed., Women in Music: An Anthology of Source Readings from the Middle Ages to the Present (New York: Harper & Row, 1982), 154-155. 9 confidence, along with the time-consuming duties of a grueling concert schedule and motherhood, pushed composition into the background. This shift was also propelled by the changing climate of the performance market: by the 1840's virtuoso performers were no longer expected to champion their own pieces, therefore the roles of performer and composer separated.19 This new arrangement suited Clara perfectly. Rather than composing out of necessity in order to maintain her career, composing became a private, personal enterprise, with the results usually intended as gifts for her husband. Clara's three songs from the Liebesfriihling Lieder would be one of those gifts. As the main recipient of these "gifts," Robert too was caught up in the conflict of Clara's many roles. On the one hand, he encouraged her creative efforts, while betraying society's views on women's roles: Clara has written a number of small pieces that show a musical and tender invention that she has never attained before. But to have children and a husband who is always living in the realms of imagination do not go together with composing. She cannot work at it regularly and I am often disturbed to think how many profound ideas are lost because she she cannot work them out. But Clara herself knows her main occupation is as a mother and I believe she is happy in the circumstances and would not want them changed.20 There is no doubt that Clara was aware of Robert's views: his remarks were recorded in their joint marriage diary (17 February 1843). Even though composition provided a creative bond that had sustained Robert and Clara through the early years of their relationship, that bond became somewhat tenuous under the stress of married life. For the newly-wed Schumanns, however, that musical bond was still strong, and the 1 9Cai, "Clara Schumann: 'A Woman Must not Desire to Compose'," 58. 20Reich, Clara Schumann: The Artist and the Woman, 228. 10 love theme of Ruckert's Liebesfhihling poems was obviously appealing. The poems, numbering some three hundred and ninety-five, were written in 1821 during Ruckert's courtship with Luisa Wiethaus-Fischer. Ruckert sent the poems along with letters to his "liebste Luisa," who in turn gathered them into a single collection. According to Hubert Grimme, the Liebesfhihling lyrics were "das Hohelied seiner [Ruckert's] Liebe."21 Robert acquired a copy of the first volume of Ruckert's collected works and gave the volume to Clara. The inscription reads: "Clara Schumann hat dies Buch geschenkt im J[ahr] 1837 von ihren damaligen Liebsten Robert."22 Although it appears that Robert was already referring to his beloved as Clara Schumann, even though they did not marry until 1840, it is possible that the inscription was added later. The idea of collaboration is a consistent thread in the Schumann letters and diaries, the seeds of this idea had been sown very early. In 1833, Clara, who was not yet fourteen years old, dedicated her Romance varie Pour le Piano Op. 3 to Robert,23 who, in a letter, expressed his thanks and "the hope that the union of our names on the title page might in future be a union of our views and ideas."24 Robert voiced this idea more concisely in 1839 when he wrote: "We shall publish a good deal under both our names, posterity shall regard us as one 21Hubert Grimme, "Liebesfruhlings Entstehung," Ruckert im Spiegel seine Zeitgenossen und der Nachwelt, ed. Wolfdietrich Fischer (Wiesbaden: Otto Harrassowitz, 1988), 292. 22Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 5. 23Reich, Clara Schumann: The Artist and the Woman, 297'. 2 4 Eva Weissweiler, ed., The Complete Correspondence of Clara and Robert Schuman, Critical Edition, vol. 1, trans, by Hildegard Fritsch and Ronald L. Crawford (New York: Peter Lang, 1994), 8. 11 heart and one soul, and not find out what is yours and what is mine."25 With these allusions to union and collaboration in mind, Ruckert's poetry was chosen as an appropriate vehicle for what would prove to be Robert and Clara's only joint work.26 Entries in the Schumann diaries and the Abschriftenbuch suggest that Robert most likely chose which texts were to be set, and by whom.27 The idea of collaboration inspired Robert: The idea, to bring out an album of lieder with Clara, has given me an enthusiasm for work. Thus from Monday to Monday the 11th, 9 lieder from the Liebesfriihling by Ruckert were completed in which I think I may again have found a special tone. Now Clara should also compose a few from the Liebesfriihling. O, do it Klarchen!28 Clara's own diary entry the following week (11-16 January 1841), provides another small clue: "Several times already I've gotten myself to work on the poems by Ruckert that Robert had copied"29 Despite Clara's assertion that Robert had copied the poems, it does not necessarily confirm that he chose the texts. Both composers, at one time or another, entered poems in the Abschriftenbuch (the Eichendorff poems of Robert's Liederkreis Op. 39, are in "Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 4. 2 6Clara had written three other songs which she gave to Robert at Christmas 1840. Robert's plan to "interweave" these songs with some of his own and publish them together never came to fruition, as it was preempted by the Liebesfriihling Lieder. See Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 5. 2 7The Abschriftenbuch was a "notebook of poetry Robert and Clara kept together for compositional ideas, designated by them as their 'Abschriften verschiedenen Gedichten zur Composition'." See Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 7 2 8Gerd Nauhaus, ed., The Marriage Diaries of Robert and Clara Schumann: From Their Wedding Day through the Russian Trip, trans, by Peter Ostwald (Boston: Northeastern University Press, 1993), 50. 29Nauhaus, The Marriage Diaries, 52. Emphasis added. 12 the Abschriftenbuch in Clara's handwriting, for example.)30 According to Rufus Hallmark, many Ruckert poems are scattered throughout the Abschriftenbuch, but five are distinctly grouped together: "Die gute Nacht," "Er ist gekommen," "Warum willst du andre fragen," "Liebst du um Schonheit," and "O Freund! Mein Schirm, mein Schutz." These are most likely the five poems that "Robert had copied." The three poems in the middle of the group also bear a marginal note, "von Clara componiert."31 Unfortunately, Hallmark does not state if this note is in Clara's hand or Robert's. Furthermore, the note is undated and so cryptic it is of little value. Due to a lack of further evidence, the choice of texts is speculative. In contrast to the speculation about the selection of the texts, the chronology of the Liebesfhihling settings and their subsequent publication can be stated with certainty. As noted above, Robert recorded the completion of his settings in the marriage diary on 11 January 1841, and Clara began her settings the following week. Once again, though, Clara was plagued by uncertainty. Her diary entry from that week refers not only to the poems Robert had copied, but also to her difficulty in setting them: "it simply won't go at all -1 have no talent whatever for composition!"32 There is no mention of other compositional activity until early June 1841, when Clara writes: "This week I sat down a lot to compose, and finally Rufus Hallmark, The Genesis of Schumann's Dichterliebe (Ann Arbor: UMI Research Press, 1979), 21. 3IHallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 7. Clara did set "Die gute Nacht," but this song was not published until recently, in Clara Schumann, Sdmtliche Lieder fur Singstimme und Klavier, bd.2, ed. Joachim Draheim and Brigitte Hoft (Leipzig: Breitkopf & Hartel, 1992). In 1846 Robert set "Die gute Nacht" for four voices, as Op. 59, no.4. See Reich, Clara Schumann: The Artist and the Woman, 303. 32Nauhaus, The Marriage Diaries, 52. 13 succeeded with four poems by Ruckert for my dear Robert." Clara gave the songs to Robert for his birthday on 8 June, noting in the diary that: "There was little I could give my Robert....Four lieder by Ruckert gave him much pleasure."33 Robert was so pleased that he again suggested publishing the songs with some of his own.34 After Clara's diary entry (6 to 21 June 1841), however, the topic of the Liebesfriihling Lieder and publication is conspicuous in its absence from the marriage diary. From June to September 1841, Robert and Clara wrote about his work on the Spring Symphony, a much needed vacation, and the anxiously awaited birth of their first child. If publication of the Liebesfriihling Lieder was a momentous undertaking, why did the songs disappear from the marriage diary, the primary source of Robert and Clara's communication? In order to answer that question, we must turn from the marriage diaries to Robert's private correspondence for information on the publication details. It appears that Robert had planned a surprise for Clara: the desire for secrecy kept further mention of the lieder out of the joint diaries and away from Clara's eyes. He sent a letter on 22 April 1841, requesting that Kistner publish his Ruckert settings along with the three songs Clara had given him for Christmas. Robert also requested that Kistner keep the matter a secret from Clara, as the finished volume was intended as a gift. Kistner's failure to respond was fortuitous. When at last Clara completed her settings, and with time running short, Robert offered the entire Liebesfriihling package to Breitkopf and 33Ibid., 84-85. Deborah Stein and Robert Spillman, in their book Poetry into Song: Performance and Analysis of Lieder (New York: Oxford University Press, 1996), state, incorrectly, that Clara's "Liebst du urn Schonheit" was composed in 1840. Stein and Spillman date Mahler's setting of the same text as 1905, which is also incorrect. 34Nauhaus, The Marriage Diaries, 85. 14 Hartel on 23 June.35 The publishers complied with Robert's request - the advance copy was ready for Clara's birthday on 13 September. My birthday was a day filled from morning to night with enjoyment and happiness. Robert surprised me with so many things, his completed D Minor Symphony, the first printed part of the B-Flat Major Symphony, and most of all with the published Ruckert lieder, wherein a few of my feeble productions also appear. I had no inkling of this surprise.36 Yet another mystery surrounded the publication. True to his word, Robert had the lieder published under both names, as Zwo/f Gedichte aus F. Riickerts Liebesfriihling fur Pianoforte mil Gesang von Clara und Robert Schumann Opus 37/12.37 Although the first edition of the Liebesfriihling included both names and the dual opus number, it did not list the attribution of the individual songs. Other than possibly Robert's desire to be regarded as "one heart and one soul," we can only speculate as to the reasons for such ambiguity. His sense of humour and fondness for mysticism may have played a role here, as early reviewers and critics could not accurately identify the songs with their respective composers. Perhaps the mystery stems from Robert's familiarity with a similar situation: Felix and Fanny Mendelssohn also published lieder together, but Fanny's contributions to Felix's Op. 8 and Op. 9 were never attributed to her in print.38 It is also possible that he regarded the contributions of each composer as equal in quality or number, even though he composed nine of the songs and 'Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 8. 'Nauhaus, The Marriage Diaries, 109. 'Robert's Opus 37, Clara's Opus 12. 'Citron, "The Lieder of Fanny Mendelssohn Hensel," 570-594. 15 Clara composed only three. Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau suggests that "All in all, one gains the impression that Robert wanted Clara to have a place in the limelight."39 This does not appear to be true, given that Clara already was in the "limelight," arguably more famous than her husband, and well on her way to becoming one of the most respected performers of her time. Fischer-Dieskau's attitude seems to reflect the broader cultural attitude that also shaped Robert and Clara's own beliefs about gender. 'Fischer-Dieskau, Robert Schumann Words and Music, 116. 16 Chapter Two Before turning to a gender analysis of Ruckert's poems, it is necessary to discuss the basis of Hallmark's gender theory. With the exception of two duets (nos. 7 and 12), Robert and Clara did not specify the gender of the singer(s). Hallmark's purpose is to develop a viable proposal for the performance of the songs. He suggests that performance of the songs should be based on a general congruence between the gender of the performers and the gender inherent in each text. He therefore posits the following alternation of the singers:1 Song Voice Gender of Text No.l tenor precedes female song, implicit male? or gender-neutral? No.2 soprano explicit female No.3 tenor implicit male (Dichter) No.4 soprano implicit female No.5 tenor explicit male (Dichter) No.6 ten./sop. explicit male and accompanying voice No.7 sop./ten. duet No. 8 tenor implicit male (Dichter) No.9 soprano explicit male, but regular alternation calls for female No. 10 tenor explicit male No. 11 soprano implicit female? or gender-neutral? No. 12 sop./ten. duet Hallmark draws support for his argument from two sources. The first of these is Robert's letter to his publisher: "Together we have composed a number of Ruckert Lieder that are related to one another as question and answer."2 The "question and answer" implies a dialogue, which in turn implies the alternation of singers. With this idea in mind, Hallmark xThis table is reproduced from 'Figure 5 Suggested alternation of singers,' in Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 21. 2Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 21. 17 turns his attention to the texts, providing a summary of the dialogue and its dramatic content. Except for song 9, where Hallmark's theory momentarily collapses (reasons for this will be explored below), the scheme presented is workable.3 Despite the fact that Hallmark has drawn our attention to gender issues, these texts require closer scrutiny. Where gender is explicit, how is that marking produced or reproduced? To what extent does Ruckert's poetic imagery reify gender stereotypes? In cases where gender is implicit or neutral, are the underlying semiotic codes transmutable or open to reinterpretation? If indeed there is a "dialogue" here, what are the speakers saying to and about each other? To say that conjugal love is the central conceit is to rely too heavily on the Schumanns' biography and the assumption of "marital bliss," thus avoiding the tension created by gender ambiguity inherent in Ruckert's texts. 3Hallmark's scheme is not rigid - alternative plans are presented in a footnote. See "The Ruckert Lieder," 23, note 56. 4This, and all subsequent translations, are taken from Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 25-30. Emendations to the translations have been made where necessary. No. 1. "Der Himmel hat eine Trane geweint Der Himmel hat eine Trane geweint, Die hat sich ins' Meer zu verlieren gemeint Die Muschel kam und schloB sie ein: Du sollst nun meine Perle sein. Du sollst nicht vor den Wogen zagen, Ich will hindurch dich ruhig tragen. O du mein Schmerz, du meine Lust, Du Himmelstran' in meiner Brust! Gib, Himmel, da(3 ich in reinem Gemiite Den reinsten deiner Tropfen hute! Heaven wept a tear, That thought to lose itself in the sea. The mussel came and enclosed it: You will now be my pearl. You need not fear the waves, I will carry you calmly through them. 0 you my pain, you my joy, You heaven's tear within my breast! Grant, Heaven, that I with a pure heart May protect the purest of your drops! 18 If we are to think of Robert and Clara's songs as a "dialogue" between a male poet and his female beloved, then "Der Himmel hat eine Trane geweint" provides an awkward opening. There are two "voices" speaking here: the first is that of the narrator who describes the scene in lines 1-3. At line 4, the address shifts to the direct speech of what ought to be one of the main characters in the dialogue, regarded by Hallmark as an implicit male. Hallmark summarizes the text as follows: "The poet offers a recherche metaphor of his beloved as a teardrop from heaven carried protectively by a mussel; the tear in the mussel's breast (its Schmerz and Lust) is love itself."5 Contradictory cultural codes - the Schmerz and Lust embedded in the imagery - destabilize the poem, and the entire cycle, from the outset. The latent sexual imagery is also highly contradictory; the poetic voice does not translate unequivocally into one gender or another but remains ambiguous. One such contradiction is presented very early in the poem. Hallmark suggests that the teardrop is a metaphor for the female beloved: the tear's fall from Heaven is a familiar trope of female passivity. The tear, though, is also a conventional symbol for the love act, a flow of semen that fertilizes Mother Earth.6 Richard Kramer asserts that the idea of "tears as the mysterious elixir of the [love] act" caught the attention of Robert Schumann and Franz Schubert: both composers exploited the metaphor in their settings of Heine. Of the examples noted by Kramer, the strongest parallels with the present text occur in Schubert's "Am Meer" (D. 957, no. 9), and with one song from Robert's Dichterliebe, "Aus meinen Tranen 5Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 24. 6Hans Biedermann, Dictionary of Symbolism .Cultural Icons and the Meanings Behind Them, trans, by James Hulbert (New York: Meridian, 1994), 277. 19 sprieBen" (Op. 48, no. 2).7 Despite the grammatical gender of the noun (eine Trane), the tear appears to have strong masculine connotations. The mussel, on the other hand, is feminine. Again, the grammatical gender of the noun, "die Muschel," is an important marker. Although the mussel typically has an elongated, ostensibly phallic and therefore masculine, shape,8 just as often it has a vaginal shape. Symbologically, the mussel has "long been associated with female genitalia and reproductive organs."9 These feminine connotations are confirmed at the end of line 3: the love act is consumated as the mussel (vagina) encloses the tear (semen), signifying fertilization. If the mussel can be fertilized, it can also give birth. In line 4, the pearl, the offspring of this fertilization, is now safely esconced in the mussel's "womb." One can further draw a correspondence between "die Muschel" and "die Mutter" (the mother): spoken quickly the two words sound alike. Furthermore, if we consider the expression "mother of pearl," the poem may be more convincingly read as a procreation scenario - appropriately "giving birth" to the "song cycle." The pearl, too, has its own set of feminine associations. Hans Biedermann notes that it is "grouped in symbological tradition with precious stones, the pearl with its delicate shimmer 7Richard Kramer, Distant Cycles: Schubert and the Conceiving of Song (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1994), 127. 8According to S. Peter Dance "Discus- and fan-shaped shells are less common than triangular shells, such as tellins. The largest shape category of all - boat-shaped - comprises arks and other low, broad bivalves, while certain groups, such as mussels, are paddle-shaped." Eyewitness Handbook: Shells (Toronto: Stoddart Publishing, 1992), 21. Dance's illustration of the "paddle-shape" looks very much like a side-ways teardrop. 9Biedermann, Symbolism, 40. 20 is thought of as lunar and feminine; its spherical form is associated with perfection."10 Despite the fact that these attributes compel a reading of the pearl as a metaphor for the female beloved, the pearl of this poem is also a "child" - perhaps the image of the innocent woman-child often encountered in literature. There is one interesting twist to this procreation scenario: the mussel does not actually "give birth" because the pearl is never released - it remains embedded in the mussel's "womb." The mussel's enclosure of the pearl echoes a chilling refrain repeated throughout the eighteenth to mid-nineteenth century, described by Bram Dijkstra as "the ever-increasing enclosure of women within the ornate walls of the middle-class household, and their ever-greater disenfranchisement from virtually all forms of intellectual and social choice."11 Because they were regarded as the keepers of men's souls, women were safely locked away in order to protect them from moral corruption. Like the "perfect" pearl, it was important that women remained untainted. The pearl, however, is not without its own set of contradictions. Lodged within the mussel (the poet's breast), it is both Schmerz and Lust - a large scale metaphor for the whole poem. Fertilization from "Heaven's tear" is a blessing, the Lust of the poem, and a significant creative act. Yet this creation of the pearl is also a source of pain (Schmerz); it exists as an abnormal growth within the shell, spun from the mussel's secretions to ease the irritation. Despite their strong feminine connotations, Hallmark still reads the mussel and the 10Ibid., 259. l lBram Dijkstra, Idols of Perversity: Fantasies of Feminine Evil in Fin-de-Siecle Culture (New York: Oxford University Press, 1986), 3. 21 pearl as metaphors for the male poet and female beloved respectively. Yet, as shown, the gender discrepancies between the signifiers and signifieds produce a series of conflicting meanings that disguise the identity df the poetic voice. No.2 "Er ist aekommen" Er ist gekommen In Sturm und Regen, Ihm schlug beklommen Mein Herz entgegen. Wie konnt' ich ahnen, DaB seine Bahnen Sich einen sollten meinen Wegen? Er ist gekommen In Sturm und Regen, Er hat genommen Mein Herz verwegen. Nahm er das meine? Nahm ich das seine? Die beiden kamen sich entgegen. Er ist gekommen In Sturm und Regen, Nun ist entglommen* Des Fruhlings Segen. Der Freund zieht weiter, Ich seh' es heiter, Denn er bleibt mein auf alien Wegen. [* gekommen in the song] He came In storm and rain, Anxiously my heart Ran into him. How could I have known, That his paths Would unite with mine? He came In storm and rain, Boldly he took My heart. Did he take mine? Or did I take his? They both came to meet each other. He came In storm and rain, Now the blessing of spring Has dimmed.* My friend travels on, I observe it cheerfully, For he remains mine wherever he goes. [*has come in the song] Conflict between fantasy and reality, rather than gender ambiguity, appears to be the central conceit of this text. The female speaker describes a romanticized version of her beloved's passionate arrival in "storm and rain." In the first stanza, her narration of the 22 encounter with her lover reads like a rescue fantasy, evoking the image of a heroic knight bravely charging to the aid of a fair maiden in distress, yet her description is so assured that we can accept the account as reality. However, in the second stanza, as she becomes more hesitant and reflects on the accuracy of her reporting, the encounter becomes a different type of fantasy. She imagines that the union of the two lovers may have been a mutual act: she asks "Nahm er das meine?/ Nahm ich das seine?" Although she concludes that "Die beiden kamen sich entgegen" (They both came to meet each other), this reciprocity is paradoxical - it happens only in her mind. In the final stanza, the illusion (or perhaps delusion) of reciprocity slowly dissolves. Once again, her lover comes charging in, but the sad reality is that the "blessing of spring has dimmed:" love's bloom has faded and he departs.12 Reality is never allowed to develop completely, as the poem concludes with another illusion. Even though her beloved is gone, she believes that she possesses him. It is possible that these three consecutive fantasies - rescue, reciprocity, and possession - have gender implications. The question we must ask is "whose fantasies are these?" Are all of these fantasies products of the female speaker's imagination, or, in the words of Stephen Walsh, are they perhaps "an elegant view of how the more authoritarian paterfamilias hoped to be regarded by his wife?"13 Remembering that there is a male presence (Ruckert) behind the narration, these fantasies suggest a male point of view. The 1 2The textual change, from entglommen (has dimmed) to gekommen (has come) is addressed in the next chapter. 1 3As quoted in Ruth A. Solie, "Whose life? The gendered self in Schumann's Fravenliebe Songs," Music and Text: Critical Inquiries, ed. Steven Paul Scher (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1992), 221. 23 rescue fantasy seems to fit Walsh's description. Repetition of the refrain "Er ist gekommen,/ In Sturm und Regen" keeps driving home the point. All of the action is generated by the male beloved, while the female speaker is a passive onlooker. In cultural terms, the male must be free in order to transcend, while she must, typically, remain behind. It is not unlikely that Ruckert might have unconsciously appropriated the female speaker to promote covertly a masculine fantasy. The reality of the poem is that the risk of committment is not reciprocal. Unlike the mussel of poem 1, which holds the pearl firmly in its grasp, the female speaker of this text possesses no such power to "contain" her lover. Although she assures herself that "he remains mine wherever he goes," this assurance is just another fantasy. No. 3 "O ihr Herren" O ye Lords, o ye worthy Great, rich Lords all! Have you then no need in your lovely garden For a nightingale? O ihr Herren, o ihr werten GroBen reichen Herren all! Braucht in euren schonen Garten Ihr denn keine Nachtigall? Hier is eine, die ein stilles Platzchen sucht die Welt entlang. Raumt mir eines ein, ich will es Euch bezahlen mit Gesang. Here is one, who seeks the world over A quiet little place. If one of you will take me in I will repay you with song. Hallmark suggests that whereas the first two poems set up a dialogue, the third poem breaks off into a poet's aside, in which "love prompts the poet as nightingale to sing."14 His notion of an "aside" seems reasonable: the dialogue breaks off momentarily because the poetic Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 24. 24 voice is a passive one that does not directly address or refer to the beloved. Regardless of the multifarious gender connotations of this passive voice, in light of his performance theory Hallmark speculates that this is an implicit male text. Although the poet-as-nightingale metaphor is more conventional than the poet-as-mussel metaphor, the nightingale's appearance in this group of poems further distends, rather than clarifies, the sense of gender ambiguity. Poets consider themselves disciples of the nightingale, because it represents "the human goal of producing truly melodious language."15 The roots of this representation can be traced to Greek mythology where Philomela, the daughter of Pandion, is turned into a nightingale after being raped, and having her tongue cut out. Philomela's transformation allows her to produce "poetry" (song).16 Philomela, however, is female, as is the nightingale (die Nachtigall). The metaphorical.connection between the poet and the nightingale allows gender ambiguity; we cannot say with certainty if the poet is male or female: Inasmuch as the poet-nightingale chain is ambiguous, what is of interest here is the nightingale's "song." There is a discernable contrast between the humble, possibly female nightingale and the "great, worthy Lords" (unambiguously male). These Lords oversee a "beautiful garden" - perhaps the Garden of Eden - evoking religious or biblical connotations. Interestingly, in Christian teachings, the nightingale's song was often heard as a longing for 15Biedermann, Symbolism, 237. 16Michael Grant, Myths of the Greeks and Romans (New York: Mentor, 1962), 390-391. 25 Paradise or Heaven.17 The nightingale's plea to enter the garden is therefore not surprising. From the perspective of gender, however, the image of the garden has yet another important implication: "In Christian iconography the enclosed garden represents virginity in general and that of Mary in particular."18 The garden is analogous to the mussel's shell, preserving the "purity" of its inhabitants, and thereby corroborating Dijkstra's notion of the cult of domesticity mentioned earlier. The conflation of images in poem 1 and poem 3 has an extraordinary effect. Ruckert has constructed two "feminine"spaces; the mussel and the garden. The pearl (the female beloved or child), whether by its own choice or not, already occupies one of these spaces. However, the nightingale also wishes to be kept "like a woman." By seeking entrance to the garden - the "feminized" space - the nightingale aligns itself metaphorically with the pearl, not the poet.19 Biedermann, Symbolism, 237. 18Biedennann, Symbolism, 149. 1 9 Biedermann relates an interesting parable in which a nightingale, like the mussel, is a guardian of a pearl: "A hunter, it seems, freed a nightingale that he had captured. The bird called down to him: 'A great treasure has slipped through your fingers: in my entrails is a pearl larger than an ostrich egg.'" See Symbolism, 149. No. 4 "Liebst du urn Schonheit Liebst du urn Schonheit, O nicht mich liebe! Liebe die Sonne, Sie tragt ein goldnes Haar. If you love for beauty, O love not me! Love the sun, It has golden hair. 26 Liebst du um Jugend, O nicht mich liebe! Liebe den Fruhling, Der jung ist jedes Jahr. If you love for youth, 0 love not me! Love the spring, That's young every year. Liebst du um Schatze, O nicht mich liebe! Liebe die Meerfrau, Sie hat viel Perlen klar. If you love for treasure, 0 love not me! Love the mermaid, Who has many fine pearls. Liebst du um Liebe, O ja mich liebe! Liebe mich immer, Dich lieb' ich immerdar If you love for Love, 0 yes love me! Love me always, 1 love you forever. This is the second text for which Hallmark recommends a female singer, but it is the first in which "she" is thought to directly address the male beloved. Hallmark's designation of "implicit female" seems to depend more on a rigid alternation of singers and prior knowledge of the composer's gender than on this particular text. Taken out of the context of this specific group of poems, "Liebst du um Schonheit" could possibly be adapted to either gender.20 Therefore Hallmark's summary is not entirely to the point: "She sets ephemeral qualities -beauty, youth, wealth - against her pure, reciprocal love."21 Although these qualities evoke an idealized image, because of conflicting cultural codes that image is ambiguous in terms of its gender. In turn, this ambiguity tempers the gender affiliation of the "speaker." The first conflict occurs between the image of "Schonheit" and its parallel love-object, "die Sonne." Beauty is a desirable attribute for either gender, but in this context it seems to 2 0The composer's gender can influence our perception of the gender affiliation of the text. Mahler also set "Liebst du um Schonheit." According to his wife, Alma, it was "the only love-song he ever wrote." Alma Mahler, Guslav Mahler: Memories and Letters, ed. Donald Mitchell, trans, by Basil Creighton (New York: Viking Press, 1969), 60. 21Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 24. 27 be analogous to the perfection of the "lunar and feminine" pearl. In Western cultures, the sun is traditionally thought of as masculine, dominant, and hot.22 We can be absolutely certain that both Robert and Clara were aware of this association: the conventional image is cultivated extensively in Adalbert von Chamisso's poems, set by Robert as Frauenliebe und Leben, Op. 42. 2 3 If, as Hallmark suggests, the speaker of the present text is female, then "she" has inverted this image. However, the grammatical gender of "die Sonne" is feminine. In German folklore and children's literature, the sun is frequently referred to as "Frau Sonne."24 The sun in this poem is clothed in "golden hair," a feminine attribute. Although "gold" is often associated with the sun, hair is not.25 Hair conjures up an entirely new set of disparate, gender-ambiguous images. It can be a source of masculine strength, as in the case of the Biblical hero Sampson, or a tool for seduction: Rapunzel and Medusa immediately come to mind. We might also bear in mind that Clara, who eventually set this text, had dark hair. The second diad, "Jugend" and "Fruhling," carries the same type of ambiguity in terms of gender. Youth is yet another desirable attribute for the beloved of either gender, but 22Biedermann, Symbolism, 331. 2 3Two important examples from Frauenliebe und Leben come to mind. The first is found in the second song, "Er, der Herrlichste von Allen," where an entire stanza of Chamisso's poem deals with the image of the male beloved as a "bright and splendid star." The second example, from song 5 ("Helft mir, ihr Schwestern") is even more explicit: "Bist, mein Geliebter, du mir erscheinen,/ Gibst du mir, Sonne, deinen Schein?" (Have you, my love, appeared to me,/ Do you give me, o sun, your brightness?). 2 4I am grateful to Professor Karl Zaencker, Department of Germanic Studies at the University of British Columbia, for pointing this out. "Biedermann, Symbolism, 154. 28 "ein Jugend" is male. However, youth also implies innocence, possibly even female virginity. In this poem, Jugend perhaps addresses the "pearl-child" metaphor of poem 1. On the other hand, springtime is the season of awakening erotic desires: "der Fruhling" is often associated with virile young men. In essence, it is not clear who the speaker (presumably female) is telling the addressee (presumably male) to love. Nonetheless, the third stanza of the poem does lend credence to Hallmark's reading. The speaker suggests that if the addressee desires wealth, he (or she) should love the "Meerfrau" because "Sie hat viel Perlen klar." In legend, mermaids are usually female, and are noted for the seductive appeal of their beautiful song and their long, golden hair.26 Thus the mermaid is the only unambiguous image in the poem. Whereas in the first three stanzas the female speaker questions the validity of these idealized images by countering each image with the sardonic statement "O nicht mich liebe," in the final stanza "she" posits a different ideal: pure, reciprocal love. The notion of reciprocity, if somewhat illusory in "Er ist gekommen," is stronger here. If the previous images - beauty, youth, and wealth - express a typically masculine desire, then we might view reciprocity as a feminine antithesis to that desire. No. 5 "Ich hab' in mich gesogen" Ich hab' in mich gesogen Den Fruhling treu und lieb, DaB er der Welt entflogen, Hier in der Brust mir blieb. I drew into myself The spring taie and dear, So that it, flown from the world, Remained for me here in my heart. 26 'Ibid., 375. 29 Hier sind die blauen Lufte, Hier sind die griinen Aun, Die Blumen hier, die Dufte, Der bliinde Rosenzaum. Und hier am Busen lehnet Mit suBem Liebesach Die Liebste, die sich sehnet Den Friihlingswonnen nach. Sie lehnt sich an, zu lauschen, Und hort in stiller Lust Die Fruhlingstrome rauschen In ihres Dichters Brust. Da quellen auf die Lieder Und stromen uber sie Den vollen Fruhling nieder, Den mir der Gott verlieh. Und wie sie davon trunken, Umblicket rings im Raum, Bliiht auch von ihren Funken Die Welt, ein Fruhlingstraum. Here are the blue skies, Here are the green meadows, Here the flowers, the fragrances, The blooming bank of roses. And here on my bosom With sweet love Reclines my beloved, who longs For springtime bliss. She leans against me to listen, And hears in hushed joy Springtime's streams flowing In her poet's breast. There gush forth the songs And pour down over her The full springtime That God granted me. And as she, drunk with it, Peers around her, There also blooms from her eyes The world, a dream of spring. Whereas poems 1 and 3 carried an implicit male voice, this text is from an explicitly male point of view. Hallmark states that: "The poet has absorbed the experiences of life but it is only the beloved who inspires his creativity."27 For the poet, these experiences come in the form of a springtime dream, a metaphor for creativity that overflows with overt sexual imagery. In the first two lines the speaker states: "I drew into myself/ The spring true and dear." This speaker, in fact, "absorbs the experiences of life" in much the same manner as the mussel enclosed the pearl in the first poem. It is possible that this procreation scenario could be spoken from a female point of view. Even though spring is fleeting, the speaker is able to 27Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 24. 30 capture and maintain it within his (or her) breast. Furthermore, these experiences are drawn from nature - blue skies, green meadows, and flowers. Within the culture/nature binary, nature is closely associated with the feminine, while culture (therefore the "poet") is assumed to be masculine. The poet controls this nature, keeping the female beloved attached to him as an object, listening to what he has to say, aroused by the springtime's streams flowing in the poet's breast. It is clear from Robert's own writings that he was aware of the analogy between creation (composing) and procreation. Peter Ostwald has noted that: Clara seems to have recognized the sexual implications of his [Robert's] songwriting on some level and perhaps even suspected a competitor. "About the songs," she wrote, jokingly, "isn't there perhaps a nightingale [presumably female] inflaming you?" To which Schumann unabashedly replied, "I was completely inside you while composing them."28 Robert frequently referred to the compositional process as a form of childbirth. As completion of the Spring Symphony grew closer, he wrote: "I feel the way a young woman must feel who has just delivered a baby - so relieved, happy, and yet sick and in pain."29 Shortly before this, when Clara discovered that she was pregnant, Robert commented that he was "looking forward to the first little song and lullabye."30 Returning to the present text, this "drawing in" of creative powers is reversed in the fifth stanza. Now the songs "gush forth and pour down" over the female beloved - the "giving 28Peter Ostwald, Schumann: The Inner Voices of a Musical Genius (Boston: Northeastern University Press, 1985), 157. 29Nauhaus, The Marriage Diaries, 61. Robert's entry from 14-21 February 1841 (one month after he completed the Liebesfriihling songs). 3flOstwald, Schumann: The Inner Voices, 168. 31 birth" part of the metaphor - literally filling her. The beloved may inspire creativity, but she is also overwhelmed by it. As she listens passively, "Da quellen auf die Lieder/ und stromen iiber sie," she is drowned in the poet's creativity, drunk with it. Thus the nightingale's "song" from "O ihr Herren" takes on new meaning - from an instrument of seduction to an instrument of impregnation. No. 6 "Liebste, was kann denn uns scheiden" Liebste, was kann denn uns scheiden? Kann's das Meiden? Kann uns Meiden scheiden? Nein. Ob wir uns zu sehn vermieden, Ungeschieden Wollen wir im Herzen sein. Mein und dein. Dein und mein. Wollen wir, o Liebste sein. Liebste, was kann denn uns scheiden? Wald und Heiden? Kann die Fern' uns scheiden? Nein. Unsre Lieb' ist nicht hienieden; Ungeschieden Wollen wir im Himmel sein. Mein und dein. Dein und mein. Wollen wir, o Liebste, sein. Liebste, was kann denn uns scheiden? Gliick und Leiden? Kann uns beides scheiden? Nein. Sei mir Gliick, sei Weh beschieden, Ungeschieden Soli mein Los von deinem sein. Mein un dein. Dein und mein. Wollen wir, o Liebste, sein. Dearest, what then can separate us? Can parting? Can parting separate us? No. If we do not see each other, Unseparated Will we remain in our hearts. Mine and thine. Thine and mine. Will we, o dearest, be. Dearest, what then can separate us? Forest and heath? Can distance separate us? No. Our love is not earthly; Unseparated Will we be in heaven. Mine and thine. Thine and mine. Will we, o dearest, be. Dearest, what then can separate us? Fortune and suffering? Can both separate us? No. Whether fortune or sorrow is allotted, Unseparated Shall my fate be from yours. Mine and thine. Thine and mine. Will we, o dearest, be. 32 Liebste, was kann denn uns scheiden? HaB und Neiden? Kann die Welt uns scheiden? Nein. Niemand store deinen Frieden! Ungeschieden Wollen wir auf ewig sein. Mein un dein. Dein und mein. Wollen wir, o Liebste, sein. Dearest, what then can separate us? Hatred and envy? Can the world separate us? No. Let no one disturb your peace! Unseparated Will we be eternally. Mine and thine. Thine and mine. Will we, o dearest, be. Although this is the first poem to express firmly the notion of "we," that notion is one-sided.' ' The poet emphatically addresses his beloved as his "Liebste." There can be no mistaking the "Liebste" as anything other than female; thoughout the Liebesfriihling, Ruckert utilized "der Liebster" for the male beloved. The two voices may have coalesced into one, but that one voice is overwhelmingly male, or, as Hallmark puts it, this is an explicit male text with "accompanying voice."31 This "accompanying voice" surfaces briefly in the refrain: "Mein und dein/Dein und mein," but it is only a perfunctory nod of agreement. In "Der Himmel hat eine Trane geweint," "O ihr Herren," and "Ich hab' in mich gesogen," the poet expresses the idea of union through a sophisticated, poetic discourse. Although "Liebste, was kann denn uns scheiden" continues this idea, it does so on a more rustic level. The generic strophic form is a parody of a traditional folk-song structure, the type of song that would be sung at the "festival of spring" in the next poem. Returning again and again, the refrain "Mein un dein./ Dein und mein./ Wollen wir, o Liebste, sein," reinforces the idea of union in the simplest of terms.There are no intricate metaphorical inversions or ambiguities to cloud the issue. No. 7 "Schon ist das Fest des Lenzes' 31 Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 21. Schon ist das Fest des Lenzes, Doch wahrt es nur der Tage drei The festival of spring is lovely, But it lasts only three days. If you have a love, crown it With roses before they fade away! Hast du ein Lieb, bekranz es, Mit Rosen, eh sie gehn vorbei! Hast du ein Glas, kredenz es O Schenk, und singe mir dabei: Schon ist das Fest des Lenzes, Doch wahrt es nur der Tage drei If you have a glass, fill it 0 host, and sing with me: The festival of spring is lovely, But it lasts only three days. Hallmark's interpretation of this poem is too simplistic: "They celebrate their love."32 Who are "they?" Robert set this poem as a duet, but there is no actual hint that two voices 'speak" in this poem. By assigning this text to a non-existent "they," Hallmark avoids any discussion or designation of gender. The speaker appears to be an outsider (like the nightingale of poem 3), a voice of reason and maturity. The silent addressee is also an outsider, a "host" who is possibly a link back to the earlier poem "O ihr Herren." In terms of gender, though, both the speaker and the addressee are probably male. "They" are celebrating their love by participating in a Dionysian orgy. The "festival of spring" is another metaphor for sexual arousal, much like in the earlier poem "Ich hab' in mich gesogen." There is a subtle difference as well: in the earlier poem, although spring has "flown from the world," it remains in the poet's breast: In the present text, the festival "lasts only three days." Raising of the glass ("Hast du ein Glas, kredenz es/O Schenk, und singe mir dabei") is a masculine gesture of celebration. Thus song 7 in Hallmark's table (page 18) could be emended to read "duet, but explicit male." 32 Tbid., 24. 34 No. 8 "Flugel! Flugel!' Fliigel! Flugel! urn zu fiiegen Tiber Berg und Tal. Flugel, um mein Herz zu wiegen Auf des Morgens Strahl. Flugel, iibers Meer zu schweben, Mit dem Morgenrot, Flugel, Flugel, iibers Leben liber Grab und Tod. Flugel, wie die Jugend hatte, Da sie mir entflog, Flugel, wie des Gluckes Schatte, Der mein Herz betrog. Flugel, nachzufliehen den Tagen, Die voriiber sind, Flugel, Freuden einzujagen, Die entflohn im Wind. Flugel, gleich den Nachtigallen, Wann die Rosen fliehn,* Aus dem Land, wo Nebel wallen, Ihnen nachzuziehn. Ach von dem Verbannungstrande, Wo kein Nachen winkt, Flugel nach dem Heimatlande, Wo die Krone blinkt. Freiheit, wie zum Schmetterlinge Raupenleben reift, Wann sich dehnt des Geistes Schwinge Und die Hull' entstreift. Oft in stillen Mitternachten FuhP ich mich empor Fliigeln von des Traumes Machten Zu dem Sternentor. Wings! Wings! to fly Over mountain and valley. Wings, to rock my heart On the beams of morning. Wings, to float over the sea, With the sunrise, Wings, wings over life, Over grave and death. Wings, as youth had When it left me, Wings, as fortune's shadow That tricked my heart. Wings, to fly after the days That are gone, Wings to hunt down the joy That is gone with the wind. Wings, like nightingales, To follow the roses when they flee,* Out of the land where fog boils. Ah, from the shores of exile, Where no boat appears, Wings to my homeland, Where a crown shines. Freedom, as into a butterfly The caterpillar ripens, When the wings of its spirit stretch And burst the cocoon. Often in the stillness of midnight I feel myself winging upward Borne by the power of dreaming To the gateway of the stars. 3 5 Doch gewachsenes Gefieder In der Nachte Duft, Mir enttraufeln seh' ichs wieder An des Morgens Luft. Yet plummage full grown In the fragrance of the night, I see again undone In the morning's breeze. Sonnenbrand den Fittig schmelzet, Ikar stiirtz ins Meer, Und der Sinne Brausen walzet Ubern Geist sich her. The sun's heat melts the wax, Icarus falls into the sea, And the roar of the senses rolls Over the spirit. [* bli'thn' in the song] [* bloom in the song "Fliigel! Flugel!" presents a significant shift in this groups of poems. Hallmark states This poem is difficult to interpret, not the least because it is distinctly a soliloquy without reference to the beloved. Perhaps it can be summarized as the poet's giving voice to his romantic yearning, his unattainable desires - tinged with veiled sexual metaphors - and can be understood in context not as ignoring his beloved, but as sharing with her of his noblest, if unrealizable, personal and artistic aspirations.33 Hallmark has raised two important issues here: the idea of soliloquy, and the notion of "unrealizable" aspirations. The poem establishes a sense of self-reflection appropriate for a soliloquy, but it leaves the identity of the speaker open to speculation. This is the first appearance of this type of narrative within this particular group of poems. Consequently, it does not seem to be spoken from the point of view of any of the previous "characters." The dramatic situation and passion indicates that the speaker is male (Hallmark suggests that male is implicit).34 However, poems 1, 3, 5, 6 - all from a male point of view - offer hopeful or reassuring that: Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 24. 34 'Ibid., 21. 36 statements of the security and sanctity of the love relationship. Even the pedagogical aspects of "O ihr Hen-en" (no.3) and "Schon ist das Fest des Lenzes" (no.7), uphold the image of bliss and contentment. Suddenly though, in this poem, the soliloquist is diverted from this approach: an abrupt turn, from optimism to pessimism, signals a significant shift in identity. In terms of gender, the imagery in "Flugel! Flugel!" is the least ambiguously male of all twelve poems in the collection. The exclamatory "Flugel" that begins the first five verses "suggests an 'elevation' of, or improvement upon, the merely corporeal,subject as it is to earth's gravity."35 Here the "poet," an outsider, speaks not of the beloved, but of the general state of man - the struggle for transcendence, something women were believed incapable of in the contemporaneous view. Wings lift man toward the Heaven (the source of the "tear" in poem 1), rising above the earth, floating over the sea, transcending life, death, and the ephemeral youth. The ultimate goal of this transcendence is the "Heimailand" (possibly, though not necessarily, Heaven) and freedom. Notice that the power of the wings propells the butterfly from its cocoon, while the pearl of poem 1 remains enclosed in the mussel. The nightingale also reappears, but the poet emphasizes the nightingale's masculine side: wings provide an ability or potential to transcend. However, this total separation from the corporeal, while "noble," is unattainable. Stanzas 1-5 each begins with a glorification of "wings." The structure changes in stanzas 6 and 7, where the "wings" are shifted from the first to the third line. Stanzas 6 and 7 appear to be more optimistic, as the poet imagines the Heimailand. Although this optimism continues in stanza 8, another significant shift occurs as the subject "I" is introduced. In the final two 35Biedermann, Symbolism, 385. 37 stanzas of the poem, the speaker, "I," the voice of reason, testifies to man's mortality and the myth of transcendence. Attempting to escape from prison, Icarus, despite the warnings of his father Daedalus, flew too close to the sun. The sun's heat melted the wax of Icarus's wings and, unlike the pearl which fell safely into the sanctuary of the mussel, Icarus plummetted into the sea and drowned. Icarus' death is a caution against the danger of seeking the unattainable, and a praise for moderation, but it is also a metaphor for sexual frustration. By invoking the legend, the speaker aligns himself with Icarus to warn against the destructive force of sensuality, because "Der Sinne brausen walzet/ Ubern Geist sich her." No. 9 "Rose, Meer und Sonne" 1. Rose, Meer und Sonne Sind ein Bild der Liebste mein, Die mit ihrer Wonne FaBt mein ganzes Leben ein. Rose, sea and sun Are an image of my beloved, Who with her delight Encompasses my whole life. 2. Aller Glanz, ergossen, Aller Tau der Friihlingsflur, Liegt vereint beschlossen In dem Kelch der Rose nur. Every ray of light, poured down, Every drop of dew on the spring meadow, Lies united in the end In the bloom of the rose alone. 3. Alle Farben ringen, Alle Duft' im Lenzgefild, Um hervorzubringen Im verein der Rose Bild. All colors struggle, All fragrances of spring's array, To create together The rose's image. 4. Rose, Meer und Sonne Sind ein Bild der Liebste mein, Die mit ihrer Wonne FaBt mein ganzes Leben ein. Rose, sea and sun Are an image of my beloved, Who with her delight Encompasses my whole life. 38 Alle Strome haben Ihren Lauf auf Erden bloB, Um sich zu begraben Sehnend in des Meeres Schoss. Alle Quellen flieBen In den unerschopften Grund, Einen Kreis zu schlieBen Um der Erde bliihndes Rund. Rose, Meer und Sonne Sind ein Bild der Liebste mein, Die mit ihrer Wonne FaBt mein ganzes Leben ein. All streams have Their course on earth merely To bury themselves Longingly in the sea's lap. All sources flow Into the inexhausible space, To complete a cycle Around the earth's blooming girth. Rose, sea and sun Are an image of my beloved, Who with her delight Encompasses my whole life. Alle Stern' in Liiften Sind ein Liebesblick der Nacht, In des Morgens Diiften Sterbend, wann der Tag erwacht. All the stars in the heavens Are a loving glance of the night, In the blush of morning Dying, as the day awakes. Alle Weltenflammen, Der zerstreute Himmelsglanz, FlieBen hell zusammen In der Sonne Strahlenkranz. All the flames of the world, All the scattered radiance of heaven, Flow dazzlingly together In the sun's wreath of shining. 10. Rose, Meer und Sonne Sind ein Bild der Liebste mein, Die mit ihrer Wonne FaBt mein ganzes Leben ein. Rose, sea and sun Are an image of my beloved, Who with her delight Encompasses my whole life. No. 10 "O Sonn', o Meer, o Rose!" 1. 0 Sonn', o Meer, o Rose! Wie wenn die Sonne triumphierend sich Hebt iiber Sterne, die am Himmel stunden, Ein Schimmer nach dem andern leis' erblich Bis alle sind in Einen Glanz geschwunden; So hab' ich, Liebste, dich Gefunden: Du kamst, da war, was je mein Herz empfun Geschwunden In dich. 0 sun, o sea, o rose! As when the sun rises triumphant Over stars that stood in the sky, One by one the shimmers grew faint, Until all in One Radiance disappeared; So dearest, I Found you: den, You came, and all my heart ever felt Was drowned In you. 39 2. O Sonn', o Meer, o Rose! O sun, o sea, o rose! Wie wenn des Meeres Arme auften sich As when the sea's arms open Den Stromen, die nach ihnen sich gewunden; To the streams which have wound themselves thence Hinein sich diese stiirzen brunstiglich, And throw themselves passionately in, Bis sie die Ruh im tiefen SchoB gefunden; Until they find rest in the deep lap; So, Liebste, hab' ich dich So, dearest, I Empfunden: Felt you: Sich hat mein Herz mit alien Sehnsuchts wunden My heart with all its wounds of longing Entbunden Was unbound In dich. In you. 3. O Sonn', o Meer, o Rose! 0 sun, o sea, o rose! Wie wenn im Fruhling tausendfaltig sich As when the thousandfold in springtime Ein buntes Grun hat ringend losgewunden, A bright green unrolled, wrestling, Ein hadernd Volk, bis Rose, koniglich A quarrelsome folk, till Rose, kingly Eintretend, es zum Kranz urn sich verbunden; Entering, bound all as a garland around itself; So, Liebste, hab' ich dich So, dearest, I Umwunden: Wound about you: Der Kranz des Daseins muB sich bliihend runden, The garland of Being must blooming surround, Gebunden Bound In dich. In you. Although Robert and Clara chose their twelve poems from scattered locations throughout Riickert's Liebesfriihling, they did preserve Riickert's consecutive ordering of three poems: "Flugel! Flugel!," "Rose, Meer und Sonne," and "0 Sonne, o Meer, o Rose!." That the Schumanns maintained this order is not surprising, given that the three texts all deal, to some extent, with the images of rose, sea, and sun. But, whereas "Flugel! Flugel!" expresses the pessimistic point of view of an outside speaker, as we shall see, these next two poems return to the more idyllic scenario of the poet and his beloved. The textual pairing of "Rose, Meer und Sonne," and "O Sonn', o Meer, o Rose," is significant, and the two poems will, necessarily, be treated together here. Together, the two 40 texts present a quasi-palindrome structure where the order of the images is reversed.36 The second and third stanzas of "Rose, Meer und Sonne," with their references to spring, colours, and roses, are varied and compressed into the last stanza of "O Sonn', o Meer, o Rose!." Similarly, the radiance and light of the eighth and ninth stanzas provide the material for the first stanza of the latter poem. The sea is an "axis of symmmetry" within the individual poems, as the middle sections of both texts (stanzas 5 and 6 of "Rose, Meer und Sonne," and the middle stanza of "O Sonn', o Meer, O Rose!") deal with the streams and their courses, while the sun is the axis between the two poems (Ex. la below). The first line of each poem is also a palindrome, in the same manner as the texts (Ex. lb). Sophisticated manipulation of form and intricate metrical variations (as in "O Sonn', o Meer, O Rose!") are common features in much of Ruckert's poetry, due in no small part to his interest in the Orient. Hallmark has noted the parallelism in the structures of these two poems, but does not refer to it as a "palindrome." See "The Ruckert Lieder," 13-14. 41 Ex. la "Palindrome" structure Poem No. 9 Poem No. 10 I Stanzas 1, 2, 3 "rose" Stanzas 4, 5, 6 "sea" Stanzas 7,8,9 (10 "sun" Stanza 1 "sun" Stanza 2 "sea" Stanza 3 Ex. lb 'Rose, Meer und Sonne" " 0 Sonn,' o Meer, o Rose!' 42 Because of their shared content, these two poems also share the same gender affiliation. Both are fairly explicit male texts, as the poet addresses the beloved with the feminine "Liebste." Rose, sea, and sun are the carefully crafted images of the beloved that coalese into a single image: "Rose, Meer und Sonne sind ein Bild der Liebste mein," instead of "Rose, Meer und Sonne sind die Bilde der Liebste mein." Perhaps "ein Bild" is simply poetic license, but in the second stanza of "Rose, Meer und Sonne," we see that the images are indeed fused into one: "Every ray of light, poured down,/ Every drop of dew on the spring meadow,/ Lies united in the end/ In the bloom of the rose alone." Each image is, appropriately, drawn from nature; a nature that is typically characterized as feminine. However, this idea of unity - ein Bild - is undermined by the gender ambiguity of the images. Hallmark asserts that, "In Riickert's Liebesfriihling, the rose does not represent the female beloved exclusively." Furthermore, "The images of sea and sun conventionally serve as metaphors for the beloved of either sex."37 Taken within the context of the preceeding eight poems, there is indeed some dualism in these metaphors that provides a striking commentary on the beloved. In addition to the use of the rose as a general symbol of love, womens' association with flowers in the mid-nineteenth century "had orignially been intended as a tribute to woman's fragility and purity."38 Highly prized for their colour and scent, the most perfect specimens, particularly roses, had to be carefully pruned and cultivated in the private garden. Woman as rose then, in all her splendor, was also a product of this cultivation in an artificially 37Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 22. 38Dijkstra, Idols of Perversity, 240. 43 maintained nature, controlled by man. The poet has already expressed this control in "Ich hab' in mich gesogen" (no. 5) where the "blooming bank of roses" is part of the life experience captured within the poet's breast. Fragility is reflected in the form of evanescence in "Schon ist das Fest des Lenzes" (no.7). The rose is treated as an ephemeral sign of love: "Hast du ein Lieb, bekranz es/ Mit Rosen, eh sie gehn vorbei!" Ruckert pointedly marked this fleeting quality in "Flugel! Flugel!" (no.8), writing "Wann die Rosen fliehn," to match the flight of the nightingale. It is not clear why Robert changed "fliehn" to "bli'ihn'," although the metaphor of fog boiling (lifting or clearing) as the roses bloom is equally as beautiful as the fog boiling when the roses flee.39 One quality of the rose is conspicuous in its absence from this group of poems, that is, the rose's thorns. Hallmark has observed that Ruckert was aware of this "naturaf'defense mechanism, as is evident in other Liebesfhihling poems: "Sie lachle oder erbose,/ Mein Lieb ist immer die Rose:/ Wenn sie lachelt voll Zier,/ Die hundertblattige mir;/ Wenn sie grollet, die Zornige,/ Ist sie die hundertdornige."40 The absence of thorns in these two poems emphasizes the beloved's fragility and purity and, by extension, her passivity and femininity. The sea is also multivalent. Water images abound in this group of texts, constituting a tangled web of meanings that gradually build to a climax in these two poems. Heaven's tear from poem 1 is a blessing, gathering its positive associations with fertility. The tear "though Eric Sams, who has little sympathy for these particular Schumann settings, insists that "bliihrf makes no sense. See Sams, The Songs of Robert Schumann, 183. 40Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 22. The poem is no. 15 of Liebesfhihling, Dritter StrauG. "She smiles or infuriates,/ My love is always the rose:/ If she smiles full of emblishment,/ It returns hundredfold to me,/ If she complains, the wrath/ It is thorny." 44 to lose itself in the sea," which is the mussel's domain. In poem 2, the 'tear" progresses from a single drop into a storm, while the Friihlingstrome of poem 5 extends the water metaphor to symbolize the poet's creativity and sexuality. These smaller forces all culminate in the sea: "Alle Strome haben/ Ihren Lauf auf Erden bloB,/ Urn sich zu begraben/ Sehnen in des Meeres Schoss." The sea is a traditional symbol of immensity and eternity. In both "Rose, Meer und Sonne," and "O Sonn', o Meer, o Rose!," the sea is welcomed as the inevitable outcome of the stream's, hence life's, natural course. However, sexual connotations characterize the sea as feminine. The sixth stanza of "Rose, Meer und Sonne" presents an explicit intercourse scenario, where the sea is an "inexhaustible space" analogous to the womb ("blooming girth"). At the parallel moment in the following poem (first stanza, lines 8, 9, and 10), "drowning" is a metaphor for the love act. The feminine associations of the rose and the sea are reasonably clear, but the sun, as an image of the female beloved, carries both masculine and feminine connotations. This dualism, noted earlier in the discussion of "Liebst du urn Schonheit," is problematic and remains so even at the conclusion of the cycle. Ambiguity, inversion, and reversal assume the proportions of a large-scale metaphor for the whole group of poems. Peter Ostwald speculates that the Liebesfriihling Lieder were indeed a "sign of the times:" All of this was in keeping with the concept, daringly new in the romantic era, that men and women should be encouraged to relate to each other as equals. It was advocated, especially among artists, that the man be allowed to develop his feminine qualities and the woman her masculine ones.41 One might argue, as I intend to do later, that this collection is, in fact, a metaphor for Robert 41Ostwald, Schumann: The Inner Voices, 167. 45 and Clara's lives. The literal gender and dominant male point of view of these texts notwithstanding (the beloved does not "speak" in these two poems at all), Hallmark suggests that "The two [the "poet" and the beloved] find in each other much more than mere consolation for the inevitable personal and artistic disappointment before the unattainable."42 Here the relevance of Hallmark's performance-related approach shows its shortcomings. His references to gender appear to come not from the texts, but from his theory that the songs should be performed by two singers. In order to preserve the strict alternation of singers, a woman must perform "Rose, Meer und Sonne." Concentrating on performance issues, Hallmark has evaluated gender issues by working backward from the musical settings to the texts. His approach provides only a superficial analysis of gender representations without addressing larger cultural issues.43 If we are to follow Hallmark's plan to have a woman sing "Rose, Meer und Sonne," we are changing the mode of address, but not the attitude. This merely places the male "poet's" words into the mouth of the female beloved: the ultimate manifestation of male control. Since all the texts were written by a male poet, one can argue that the female persona poems are no different in that regard, that they too are the "impersonation of a woman by the "Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 24. 43Perhaps Hallmark's lack of interest in these larger issues can be attributed to the date of his study: preliminary versions appeared in 1988, followed by the published article in 1990. At that time, gender studies in music were (and still are) in their infancy - theoretical tools for a more detailed analysis continue to develop. My purpose here is not to challenge or defend Hallmark's reading, but to examine the Lieder based on more current methodologies. 46 voices of male culture, a spurious autobiographical act." No. 'Warum willst du Andre fragen" Warum willst du Andre fragen Die's nicht meine treu mit dir? Glaube nichts als was dir sagen Diese Bieden Augen hier. Why do you want to ask others Who aren't truthful with you? Believe nothing except what These two eyes tell you. Glaube nicht den fremden Leuten, Glaube nicht dem eignen Wahn; Nicht mein Tun auch sollst du deuten, Sondern sich die Augen an. Schweigt die Lippe deinen Fragen, Oder zeugt sie gegen mich? Was auch meine Lippen sagen, Sieh mein Aug' - ich liebe dich. Don't believe strangers, Don't believe your own delusions; Don't interpret my actions either, But just look into my eyes. Are lips silent to your questions, Or do they testify against me? No matter what even my lips say, Just look into my eyes -1 love you. Hallmark suggests that this text is either "implicit female" or "gender-neutral." His reading is based on the position of the poem in the 'dialogue" and the composer's gender, leading him to the conclusion that the speaker is an implicit female: "The [female] beloved reminds the poet of the truth he can read in her eyes, regardless of opinion, appearances, and actions."45 Since there are no gender-specific references in the poem, such as Liebste, or Liebster, or gendered pronouns, the reader must depend on other codes to interpret the speaker's gender affiliation. The primary code in this text is the "gaze" scenario. The gaze is a familiar cultural 'Solie, "Whose life? The gendered self in Schumann's Frauenliebe Songs," 220. Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 24. 47 trope: ...men act and women appear. Men look at women. Women watch themselves being looked at. This determines not only most relations between men and women but also the relation of women to themselves. The surveyor of woman in herself is male: the surveyed female. Thus she turns herself into an object - and most particularly an object of vision: a sight.46 To interpret the gaze in this poem, we must ask two questions: Who is "looking," and who is being "looked at?" Does the speaker control the gaze, or is he or she the object? In a group of poems where ambiguity and reversal are a central conceit, we should expect that Ruckert's gaze scenario does not take a "classic" formulation. Typically, the male holder of the gaze, not the female object, remains hidden, but in this poem there is no object being examined by either party - only the eyes are "seen." The holder of the gaze, though, appears to be male: his eyes dictate the "truth," they control the addressee by "telling" her what to believe. Ambiguity is played out in the second stanza, where the speaker states "Glaube nicht den eignen Wahn." The addressee is susceptible to gossip and delusions, but this trope has two connotations; the deluded romantic male, or the trope of female madness and hysteria associated with the "cult of invalidism."47 The speaker further states "Nicht mein Tun auch sollst du deuten." Typically, men do the actions, and this group of poems is no exception: the male character is the agent, the female beloved the passive receptor. The addressee is being 46John Berger, Ways of Seeing (London and Harmondsworth, 1972): 47. As quoted in Solie, "Whose life? The gendered self in Schumann's Frauen/iebe Songs," 227. Italics in original. 47Dijkstra, "The Cult of Invalidism, Ophelia and Folly; Dead Ladies and the Fetish of Sleep," Idols of Perversity, 25-63. 48 asked to disregard "actions," possibly infidelity or other indiscretions. "Sondern sich die Augen an" (look into my eyes) is a hypnotic command, as the speaker seeks to mesmerize the addressee. In a typical hypnosis scenario, it is the male who is in control and issues the commands. The final stanza is very much like the second. Again, the speaker asks the addressee to trust unequivocally, and "just look into my eyes." We can possibly read a connection between this poem and Robert and Clara's biography. The notion of "testifying" hints at the court battle with Wieck and his attempts to discredit Robert, in order to prevent Clara from marrying him. Rumoured indiscretions and innuendo that haunted the Schumann courtship, and speculation regarding Robert's various relationships, still persist even today. No. 12 "So wahr die Sonne scheinet" So wahr die Sonne scheinet, So wahr die Wolke weinet, So wahr die Flamme spruht, So wahr der Fruhling bltiht; So wahr hab'ich empfunden, Wie ich dich halt' umwunden Du liebst mich, wie ich dich, Dich lieb' ich, wie du mich. As surely as the sun shines, As surely as the clouds weep, As surely as the flames sparkle, As surely as the spring blooms; You love me, as I love you, I love you, as you love me. So surely have I found you, As I hold you embraced: Die Sonne mag verscheinen, Die Wolke nicht mehr weinen, Die Flamme mag verspriihn, Der Fruhling nicht mehr bliihn! Wie wollen uns unwinden Und immer so empfinden: Du liebst mich, wie ich dich, Dich lieb' ich, wie du mich. The sun may cease to shine, The clouds no longer weep, The flame may stop sparkling, The spring no more bloom! We will embrace each other And always feel: You love me, as I love you, I love you, as you love me. 49 Hallmark's summary of this poem is similar to poem 7; he states: "They pledge eternal love in defiance of the waning of sun, rain, fire, and spring."48 Although Hallmark's invocation of "they"stems from the fact this text was set as a duet, the final poem appears to be spoken by two "voices." What remains to be seen is if, in fact, these two voices are those of the "poet" and the beloved. The two stanzas of the poem recall the imagery of the preceeding texts; sun, clouds, flames, and spring. However, the attitude toward these images is slightly different in each stanza. The first stanza alludes to the erotic connotations of the previous male-persona poems: sun and flames indicate the burning passion of physical desire, while the clouds refer back to "Heaven's tear" and fertility. Spring "blooms" as the youthful symbol of male virility and sexuality. In the second stanza the imagery is the same, but the speaker addresses the temporality of the poet's desire in the first stanza. The attitude is more pessimistic, akin to that of the speaker in "Liebst du um Schonheit." Although, the idea of reciprocity is raised again ("Wie wollen uns unwinden"), but somehow it seems false. If this is indeed a female speaker, at the end of the poem she is simply repeating the "poet's" words from stanza 1. She has no "voice" of her own. Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 24. 50 In light of the ambiguity in these poems, it may be necessary to revise Hallmark's performance scheme thus: Poem/Song Voice Gender of Text No. 1 soprano implicit female (procreation, "giving birth") No. 2 soprano explicit female No. 3 soprano implicit female No. 4 soprano implicit female No. 5 tenor explicit male (1st stanza could be female) No. 6 ten./sop. explicit male and "accompanying voice" No. 7 sop./ten. or 2 tenors duet, but explicit male No. 8 tenor explicit male No. 9 tenor explicit male No. 10 tenor explicit male No. 11 tenor implicit male, but could be female No. 12 sop./ten. duet, but more male than female The "female" voice is assigned to four solo songs (nos. 1-4,) and to two of the duets (nos. 6 and 12), while the "male" voice has five solo songs (nos.5, 8-11). A second male voice would be required for one duet (no. 7). As both products and agents of culture, these poems strike a candid view of gender and gender difference. Only one poem, "Er ist gekommen," is spoken with an explicitly female voice. In other poems, particularly "Der Himmel hat eine Trane geweint," " 0 ihr Herren," and "Warum willst du Andre fragen," conventional metaphors are inverted or realigned, disguising the gender and the identity of the poetic voice. Even though this reading casts some doubt on Hallmark's "dialogue" theory, a sense of balance still remains. 51 Chapter Three In the group of poems that Robert and Clara chose to set, the multiplicity of voices, dualistic imagery, and ambiguous subjectivity combine to produce a labyrinth of meanings and readings. The composer is faced with distilling these meanings, or, as Edward Cone suggests: "he [or she] delimits one subset within the complete set of all possible forms."1 In turn, this subset "may previously have been obvious to every reader, or it may have been concealed to all except the composer."2 Given the ambiguity of Ruckert's texts, the possiblities of multiple readings are endless. Whereas the previous chapter explored two such subsets, my own and Hallmark's, the following analysis of Robert and Clara's musical settings attempts, at least in part, to elucidate the composers' readings. As we shall see, gender is not always "constituted coherently or consistently"3 in Robert and Clara's music. In light of the musical details, their settings play upon Ruckert's ambiguity, producing in turn an intricately woven fabric that displaces our perceptions of ninteenth-century Western cultural attitudes about gender and gender difference. 'Edward T. Cone, "Words into Music: The Composer's Approach to the Text," Music: A View From Delft, ed. Robert P. Morgan (London and Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1989), 119. 2Ibid. 3Judith Butler, Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity (New York: Routledge, 1990), 3. 52 • No. 1 "Der Himmel hat eine Trane geweint" - Robert Schumann Robert's setting reflects the tension of the gender ambiguity of this text. In part, tension arises out of a conflict between musical and poetic form. Ruckert's textual division is asymmetrical: although the poem consists of a single ten-line stanza, there is an internal division of six lines plus four lines: (3+3) + 4. In contrast, the musical form itself is relatively symmetrical, divided equally in two sections (mm. 1-14, mm. 15-30), each consisting of three uniform four-bar phrases. The composer remained true to the textual division, though, placing the first six lines in the first section and the last four lines in the second section. Repetition of the last line, with longer note values on the final "Tropfen," enables the phraseology to continue unchanged while preserving a sense of balance between the relative length of the two sections. A further subdivision of the text occurs within the first section of the song, effected by a sudden and striking harmonic change. Within the main tonality of the song, Ab major, the mussel's appearance at m. 6 is greeted by the voice's unexpected semitone inflection to C b (from B b), together with a new key area - F b major (b VI). The modulation is eased in as an E b in the bass (from V of A b major, m.5) is carried across the bar line while the remaining voices proceed in semitone motion to V 6 / b VI (Fig. 1). Fb major arrives convincingly with a half-cadence at the word "kam" (came) on beat 3 of measure 6. Although this tonal shift heralds the entrance into a new and "special" world, of even greater significance is what happens in this new world. As the singer announces "Du sollst 53 nun meine Perle sein" (m.8), the piano swallows the voice, literally and figuratively, by climbing an octave above the vocal line (Fig.2). This registeral shift emphasises the enclosure of the pearl and the consummation of the love act, and seems to provide a metaphorical connection between the piano and the mussel, and between the voice and the pearl. In the remainder of the setting, however, Robert manipulates this metaphorical connection, using motivic material to heighten Riickert's ambiguity. Eric Sams notes that "the bass [the piano] sings 'Clara' at bars 21-22, the poem's hidden and flawless pearl"4 (Fig. 3a). Transliteration of names into musical notes is not a singular phenomenon in Robert's oeuvre: Sams has expended a considerable effort tracing Robert's use of ciphers.5 The motive consists of a five-note group C-B-A-G-A (Fig. 3b). C and A are aligned with the same letters in Clara's name, while the other two pitches, B and G, are substituted as musical equivalents for the letters L and R. Various chromatic inflections of those pitches, such as B b or G#, along with transpositions, also occur frequently. Stephen Smith has also noted that: Schumann used this motive frequently between the years 1834 and 1841: in songs like "Die Lotusblume" (op. 25 no. 7) and "Mit Myrthen und Rosen" (op. 24 no.9), in the Davidsbundlerianze, and the op. 47 Piano Quartet, and culminating in the Fourth Symphony, which Schumann referred to as his "Clara" symphony.6 In "Der Himmel hat eine Trane geweint, the "Clara" theme is used four times in the body of the song, not once, as Sams suggests. The occurrence cited by Sams is indeed the symphonic 4Sams, The Songs of Robert Schumann, 180. 5Eric Sams has devoted two articles to this topic. See "Did Schumann Use Ciphers?" Musical Times 106 (1965): 584-591, and "The Schumann Ciphers," Musical Times 107 (1966): 392-400. 6Smith, "Eloquence, Reference, and Significance," 12. 54 Figures 1-3 "Der Himmel hat eine Trane geweint" - Robert Schumann Fig. 1 Mm. 5-6 Fig. 2 Mm. 7-8 registeral shift Fig. 3 "Clara" motives a) Mm. 21-22 b) "pure" Clara motive c) "symphonic" form o: bi , ) — j - , ) # * *—4 d)Mm. 10-13 55 version of "Clara" (Fig. 3 c), transposed up one semitone to D b . However, a more emphatic utterance of the "Clara" motive appears at mm. 10-13 (Fig. 3d), where it is presented simultaneously in the vocal line and the bass. The vocal line, albeit slightly decorated, outlines the basic interval relationships and contour, C b -B b -A b - G - A b . At the same time, the first interval of the bass theme is expanded, from a semitone to a whole tone (E b -D b -C b-B b - C b ) to fit the harmonic progression. The ending of this dual statement overlaps with the beginning of the next, as the motive from the vocal line is transferred to the bass at measure 12 (Fig. 3e). These appearances of the motive lead Eric Sams to the conclusion that Clara is the poem's "hidden and flawless pearl." If we examine the placement of the motives solely in relation to the text, then the connection seems plausible. The pearl is the "du" of this text: "Du sollst nun meine Perle sein." Although the motive is only remotely connected with this statement - one might argue that C b - G b - A b is simply a truncated version - two subsequent complete statements of the motive are coupled with "du" (Du sollst nicht vor den Wogen zagen - motive in the vocal line and the bass), and "dich" (ich will hindurch dich ruhig tragen). The final statements of the motive, acknowledged by Sams, accompany the text "reinsten deiner Tropfen hiite." In conjunction with the text repetition, the motive appears first in the bass (shown at Fig. 3a), then in the vocal line (mm.23-24). Whereas the earlier connections between the piano and mussel, voice and pearl are still valid, to say that the motive "is" the pearl is not the same as saying that Clara "is" the pearl. If the song is "about" giving birth, remembering that Clara was the pianist in the relationship (and possibly pregnant at the time the song was written), it seems possible that there is a connection between Clara and the mussel. 56 Stephen Smith argues that "the ciphers were not primarily intended as a means of communication: [Robert] Schumann clearly used them as a pre-compositional device - a way of limiting his thematic and compositional choices."7 Yet Robert often wrote that his music "mourns for Glara, cries for her, calls her name; or that it is Clara herself."8 Despite the fact that the practice of encipherment is not explicitly mentioned in Robert's diaries, and that his contemporaries were apparently unaware of the practice, certainly Clara, the person most familiar with her husband's music, must have known about it. The pearl of this song is not just any pearl, but the most perfect of Heaven's teardrops - emphasised by the repetition of the text and motive at the end of the song. In essence, there is a double performative meaning at work. We might view this as a fitting tribute to Clara, the ultimate expression of Robert's love and respect for her. However, the song also establishes a disturbing cultural ideology; a mythic definition of the perfect, passive woman. Recalling the ornate walled garden from Dijkstra's "cult of domesticity," such a lofty pedestal becomes less appealing. As Ruth Solie has suggested, "nineteenth-century listeners expected music to carry messages," therefore songs "would have been understood in their own time to be doing cultural work."9 • No. 2 "Er ist gekommen in Sturm und Regen" - Clara Schumann Clara's passionate setting of this text provides a striking contrast to the placid reverence of the first song. The accompaniment is the most virtuosic of all twelve songs in 7Smith, "Eloquence, Reference, and Significance," 12. 8Sams, The Songs of Robert Schumann, 22. 9Solie, "Whose life? The gendered self in Schumann's Frauenliebe songs," 219. 57 the collection, in no small measure due to Clara's skills as a pianist. As we shall see, the tempestuous nature of the F minor setting, along with certain aspects of form, refutes any notion of "Clara as pearl" that may have been established in the first song. In this song, Clara has placed the three parallel stanzas of Ruckert's poem into a bar form (AAB), framed by a four-measure introduction and a six-measure postlude. By doing this, she avoided the simplicity of a strophic setting, while alluding to it by setting the beginning of the B section identically to the two A sections, only later diverging from the original. The bar form is almost symmetrical; the Slollen (AA) comprised of thirteen measures (repeated), the Abgesang (B) twenty-three measures. Thus she emphasizes the special meaning of the last stanza. Although bar form is commonplace in song composition, Clara's handling of the internal structure and tonal plan of the individual sections is unusual. In the Stollen, the first four lines of the text are set in F minor. A two-measure piano interlude (mm. 9-10) carries the modulation through to 111 (A b) for the last three lines of the text (mm. 11-15). The division in the Abgesang is different: the grouping of the lines is changed by the repetition of the first two lines of the text, on the melody of A that comprised four lines of text, set again in F minor. After the piano interlude (mm. 22-23) and modulation to III, the final section is expanded, again with repetition of the last five lines of the text. The tonal shift from F minor to Ab major marks a recurring metric shift in the text (from a mixture of iambic and amphibrach in the first four lines, to a mixture of dactylic and trochaic in the last three lines) and underscores 58 the larger sectional divisions.10 We might speculate that this tonal shift also reflects an ambiguous stance to the poem. Three times in the song, the passionate arrival of the male lover - the "rescue" fantasy - is aptly portrayed in F minor; perhaps Clara considered this as a subtle tonal connection with "Aufschwung" or "In der Nacht," from Robert's Fantasiesliicke Op. 12. The "storm" builds through rapid arpeggiation in the right hand of the accompaniment, the steadily rising vocal line, shared forte dynamic markings, and paired crescendi and diminuendi (Fig. 4). In measure 8 (21), at the height of the storm, the stage is set for a perfect authentic cadence: i 6 -iv 7-ii 5 - V( 6 4 ) 5 3 - i, in F minor. Just like the speaker's assured description of the encounter, the pull toward F minor is so strong that the listener is led to expect tonal closure in that key. However, the leading tone of the dominant, E \\, slips down to E b, while the C in the bass descends a whole tone to B b; the result is V 4 3 of A b major rather than F minor (reduction shown at Fig. 5), producing a sensation of relaxation or release of tension. When the speaker reflects on the accuracy of her reporting (mm. 11-15), then imagines her own fantasies of reciprocity and posession (mm. 11-15, 24-40), the music is in A b major. Although it is conceivable that F minor and Ab major serve to differentiate between the "male" and "female" point of view in the poem, that difference is undermined by the fact that the two keys are closely related. The ambiguity of this tonal fluctuation is intensified by the fact that the song begins in one key but ends in the other. In tonal compositions of this period, this type of ending is the 10Consult Table 3 in the Appendix for a general survey of the rhythmical characteristics of the Liebesfriihling poems. 59 exception rather than the rule. Remembering that Clara, the composer, was not among the musical avant-garde, makes the effect that much more striking.11 Clara could easily have altered the text: a final refrain of "Er ist gekommen in Sturm und Regen" would produce the inevitable return to F minor and a satisfactorily "correct" close. Even though the song begins in F minor, a case can be made in support of Ab major as the tonic. This first part of this argument hinges on two text changes that Clara did make. The final stanza of Ruckert's poem originally read: "Er ist gekommen/ in Sturm und Regen/ Nun ist entglommen/ Des Friihlings Segen." In the Abgesang, the text "Er ist gekommen/ In Sturm und Regen" is repeated at the beginning of the section (mm. 18 - 21).12 The repetition pushes the remainder of the poetic stanza away from the F minor key area and into Ab major (Fig. 6). Thus the final, and largest, section of the song begins with the text "Nun ist gekommen" (m. 24). Clara changed "entglommen" (has dimmed) to "gekommen" (has come), perhaps feeling that "entglommen" was too pessimistic given her recent marriage. Possibly, though, "gekommen" signals both the arrival of "spring's blessing" and the "arrival," or unveiling, of the tonic. Although this unveiling occurs slowly, the remainder of the Abgesang reaffirms Ab major (mm. 24-30, reduction shown at Fig. 7). A brief encounter with IV (D b major, mm.30 [Fig. 7] and again at mm. 33-34) challenges this identity momentarily, only to have Ab reestablished by a perfect authentic cadence, V 6 4 - V 7 -1 (mm. "One of Robert's biographers insists that Clara's conservatism was "bad for Robert's art because she was a timid reactionary whose musical development lagged far behind her forward-looking husband's." See Robert Haven Schauffler, Florestan: The Life and Work of Robert Schumann (New York: Henry Holt & Co., 1945), 160. 12This may explain why Clara did not repeat "Er ist gekommen" again at the end of the song. 60 39-40, Fig. 8). Whereas Clara has established a firm tonal "identity" in the last section of the song, she has also added an interesting twist. In measures 28-29, with the text "ich seh' es heiter" (I observe it cheerfully), we find the "Clara" motive embedded in the bass line, carefully veiled by the figuration in the left hand of the accompaniment (Fig. 9, bracketed in Fig. 7). This could be a coincidence, however, Clara uses the motive again later in the cycle, intertwining her own creative "voice" with that of her husband's. Considering what the future held for Robert and Clara, it is perhaps bitter irony that she chose to use the motive at that particular moment, in answer to the departing male lover. 61 Figures 4-9 "Er ist gekommen" - Clara Schumann Fig. 4 Mm. 1-9. Fig. 5 Reduction mm. 8-11. 62 Fig. 6 "Er ist gekommen" Mm. 16 -27. 63 Fig. 7 "Er ist gekommen" Reduction mm. 24-30. S5^  * — # • Sus * g 4 * * 9 -0—0—*-# * * f ii t f to 4 3 6 7c # Fig. 8 Reduction mm. 38-40. • * * 11 -0 i » -# » t ! S % % b Fig. 9 Mm. 28-29. —1 r1—^~ Firund zirht wei . tor, ii-li si'h es Lei - tc^di-no 64 No. 3 "O ihr Herren" - Robert Schumann Robert's setting preserves the simplicity of Riickert's nightingale miniature. Again, the composer is true to the text, as the two stanzas are set in a balanced AB form (A - mm.l-8, B - mm. 9-16), with a four-measure piano postlude. The A section, comprised of two identical four-bar phrases with dotted eighth note rhythms and solid chords in the accompaniment, is an appropriately majestic address to the "groBen reichen Herren." The harmonic language is simple and straightforward, in Ab major, relying on two diatonic progressions: I-V-I, and I-IV-V-I (Fig. 10). In the B section, as the nightingale begins to "sing," the accompaniment shifts to more lyrical broken chords while the harmony unfolds from V in the search for a "stilles Platzchen." The route back to the tonic features a return to the earlier blocked chords and melody, like a false recap, but with the harmony touching briefly on ii - the only sustained tonicization in the song - then closing the section with IV-V( 6 4) 7 -1 (Fig. 11). Thus the form is an interesting A B (b a1) hybrid. The lyrical tune that signifies the nightingale fills an important function. Although the postlude "song" is wordless, nonetheless it communicates; it calls out to "Clara." Sams states that "The nightingale's brief solo in the postlude is, fittingly, a love song to Clara (her motive P)."1 1 The postlude version in this song appears in a four-note form in measure 17 (Gb-F-E b -D b) and measure 18 (E b -D b -C-B b). "Motive P" is one of many variations on the "Clara" motive recorded by Sams (Fig. 12). Sams, The Songs of Robert Schumann, 181 65 Although Sams' recognition of "motive P" in the present song is helpful, use of the motive is not restricted to the postlude: it appears in its complete five-note form, in the vocal line (and accompaniment) three times in the body of the song. The motive is first associated with the "reichen Herren" in measure 3, then duplicated exactly at "keine Nachtigall" in measure 7 (Fig. 13). Although this duplication stems from the repetition of the complete four-bar phrase, it perhaps indicates that the rich Lords (unambiguously male) and the humble nightingale (possibly female) are not so different. The relationship between the Lords and the nightingale is tightened in measure 15 (Fig. 14), where the motive, with a slight rhythm change, accompanies the text "bezahlen mit [Gesang]." Nonetheless, this song does not constitute the first time that Robert associated "motive P" with the nightingale: in "Und wiissten's die Blumen," song 8 of Dichterliebe Op.48, the motive is prominent in the melody with the text "Und wiissten's die Nachtigallen" ("And if the nightingale knew" mm. 8-10, Fig. 15). In the context of this song cycle, however, "motive P" is not the exclusive domain of the nightingale. Returning to Sams' collection of motives shown in Fig. 12, we can see that "motive P" shares a substantial amount of pitch-class content with "motive X" - the "Clara" motive that is connected to both the pearl and the mussel in song 1, and the female speaker in song 2. This sharing, in fact, extends to the present song, as "motive P" and "motive X" overlap in measures 3 and 7. Even though it is still early in the cycle, in the tangled web of these connections the motive seems to signify everything and clarify nothing. 66 Figures 10-14 "O ihr Herren" - Robert Schumann Fig. 10 Reduction mm. 1-4 (c.f. mm. 5-8). h)f&—; * ? - : « — » — • z——• * S #! 1 ' 4 # »* ^ : -i 1 n r — f f ^ '• 1 I I f Fig. 11 Reduction mm. 13-16. 3 Fig. 1214 p r — i fe== 7-W Tv" ii 7-3 P T * » -a 2-f X Reproduced from Sams, The Songs of Robert Schumann, 23. 67 Fig. 13 "O ihr Herren" mm. 3 and 7 v T re Ke.i ne. Fig. 14 "0 ihr Herren" m. 15 ' — (t« ) - z a - ^ \e*\ m'i4- &e - Csa^ Fig. 15 Mm. 8-10, "Und wiissten's die Blumen," no. 8, Dichterliebe Op. 48 i 68 • No. 4 "Liebst du urn Schonheit" - Clara Schumann Clara transforms the implicit female of Riickert's text into an explicit one. The two-bar piano prelude consists of a broken chord progression on I-ii7 - V-1 that dominates much of the song (Fig. 16). Pictured in the context of the Liederabend, as the singer (most likely a woman, with Clara herself at the piano) is poised to perforin before an intimate group of family and friends, the gentle swaying of this prelude is seductive. After the entrance of the voice, the ii7 harmony of the prelude is replaced, at the word "nicht" (m.5), with vi. Although the move to vi serves a conventional Mendelssohnian predominant function, the change also illuminates the somewhat awkward syntax and sardonic negative statement of the text. The minor vi is followed by the°vii/V, which resolves to the dominant on the word "liebe" in the next bar. In measures 13 and 21, this tonal statement is repeated verbatim, each time associated with the words "nicht mich liebe." Ambiguity is played out in Clara's treatment of poetic form within the musical setting. The four stanzas of Riickert's text are grouped as three plus one: the first three stanzas begin with the sardonic negative statement "Liebst du urn ..../ 0 nicht mich liebe," while the final stanza shifts to the positive "O ja mich liebe." Clara has distributed the four stanzas evenly in a modified strophic, two-part musical form: A A 1 (mm. 3-18, and mm. 19-36 respectively, Ex.2). 69 E x . 2 Prelude: mm. 1-2 | A section mm. 3-18 | A 1 section: mm.19-26 | Postlude: mm. 37-41 a b a | b1 (3-10) (11-18) (19-26) (27-36) Text: Stanza 1 Stanza 2 Stanza 3 Stanza 4 Measures 3 to 10 and measures 19 to 26 (the first half of each section, labeled a in E x . 2 above) are identical in every respect with the exception of the melodic treatment of the word "nicht": the C 5 passing note is rhythmically displaced, occurring on beat 3 in measure 5 and beat 4 in measure 21, then moved off of the beat in measures 13 and 29, (See Fig. 17). The second half of each section (labeled b and b' respectively) begins with only a slight rhythmic change on the text "Liebst du urn" (Fig. 18). Contiguous with the rhythmic change noted above, further modification takes place as the last half of each b (mm. 15-18 and mm. 3 1-36) departs significantly, both harmonically and melodically, from its a counterpart. In both a sections, the melodic line descends from B b 4 to F 4 (scale step 6 to 3, mm. 7-10, 23-26). The underlying harmonic progression proceeds in a sequence from IV at "Liebe" (mm. 7 and 23), through I to V/vi - B b minor (mm. 10 and 26. Fig. 19). In contrast, the parallel portions of the /; sections are both different. In the first passage (mm. 15-18) the melodic "goal" is also F 4 , but the stepwise descent from D b 5 is momentarily interrupted by the leap to E b 5 (Fig. 20). The harmonic progression to V/vi that accompanies the "golden hair" and the "pearls" is superseded by a cadence in the tonic, D b major. This cadence seems seems trite in comparison, suggesting, perhaps, that while "spring" is "always young," it is also the same every year. 70 In the closing section, the positive "O ja mich liebe" is set with the same melody and harmony as the previous negative statements. Although this preserves the "strophic" quality of the song, this treatment seems to disregard the change in poetic mood. We can see, however, that the representation of this change in mood, from "nicht" to "ja," takes place later, in the passage from measures 31-36. Again, the melody descends in stepwise motion from D b5 to F 4 , but the goal of this descent is the E b4 in the piano at measure 34 (Fig. 21 and Fig. 22). Instead of continuing downward to the lower tonic, the voice leaps back up to D b5 — the chordal seventh of the ii chord in the accompaniment (m.34). Via the ensuing passage, a very strong cadential tonicization of IV (for which ii 6 5 substitutes), D b is transformed from this dissonant seventh back into the tonic (Fig. 22). By altering the musical materials in the final section, Clara places a special emphasis on the last stanza of Ruckert's text. Whereas a steady half-note pulse dominates most of the song, of particular interest in the closing section is the shift in pulse that occurs at measure 3 1. The acceleration, from half-note pulse to quarter-note pulse, is foreshadowed, albeit briefly, at measure 15 with the text "Liebe den Fruhling," anticipating, perhaps, the awakening sexuality of "spring." Excitement is short-lived, as the slower half-note pulse returns abruptly at "jung ist jedes Jahre" (mm. 17-18). The quarter-note pulse returns in the final section, extended over four measures, first in the vocal line from measure 31 to 33 on the text "Liebst du um Liebe," then transferred to the accompaniment at measure 34 (Fig. 23). Acceleration propels the music toward the "climax" on "dich liebe ich immerdar." The arguably "feminine" ideal of pure, reciprocal love (as opposed to the "masculine" ideals of beauty, youth, and wealth) is expressed by the expansion of the new pulse from two measures to four. 71 This acceleration does not characterize the music as feminine. Such "little thrusting eddies of excitement" are, according to Susan McClary, characteristic of Robert's songs.15 McClary posits that Clara's songs "might be heard not as less authoritative than those of Robert...but as articulating a more reassuring, nurturing, constant mode of expression."16 The ritard at measure 34 that eases the music gently back toward the half-note pulse might be viewed as more "reassuring" or "nurturing" than the abrupt shift earlier in the song.17 McClary's conception fails to take two important factors into account. First, Clara and Robert lived, worked, and studied in close proximity before and during their marriage: similarities in their musical styles were therefore bound to occur. Secondly, while a "thrusting eddy of excitement" might indeed be viewed as a masculine gesture, we should bear in mind that Clara worked within the patriarchal musical paradigms of her time. Using a masculine gesture to uphold a feminine ideal heightens the sense of ambiguity in the song. l3Susan McClary, "Towards a Feminist Criticism of Music," Canadian University Music Review 10:2 (1990): 16. 16Ibid. l 7One early reviewer remarked that: "The charm of the accompaniment embodies the perception of a sympathetic soul who is moved by the thoughts the voice expresses." See Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 19. 72 Figures 16-23 "Liebst du um Schonheit" - Clara Schumann Fig. 16 Prelude mm. 1-2. m i f f z. T- 9-ii ¥ Ir 1 Fig. 17 m. 5 mm. 13 & 29 m. 21 Fig. 18 Rhythm change mm. 3-4 mm. 11-12 [\\ J J J I r J - I £ J -J J Fig. 19 Reduction mm. 7-10 (cf. mm. 23-26). O 4 HT 73 Fig. 20 mm. 15-18 f f f—f—-p-i - u -,J)i 1 PM i 1 — c " * 1 —J \a—4 *L_ Lie- b & d f f l rTiib-)'fl<3s dfcr Jung isV je. - d e s J a l n r 1 , Fig. 21 mm. 31-34 > * — f—i \ ~ . . . . 11 LJ v-7- * — ] y H 7 i— M —J —J — Fig. 22 Reduction mm. 33-36 Fig. 23 Pulse, mm. 31-34 itift — J J- j j ; j j j j . J J J / n „ 1 1 | L | * ^ He . b JM{ J : e! Liebst dn nm Lie.be, o jamiA lie.be, | J . > J ? f i | lie . bemiii ini-nier,^  ici lit V ritard.' %\ H I b' id) ; i » f i i 5 74 No. 5 "Ich hab' in mich gesogen" - Robert Schumann Robert has set the six stanzas of Ruckert's poem in an A B A 1 form, grouping the stanzas in pairs (Ex. 3). Ex. 3 Prelude: mm. 1-4 A: mm. 5-12 B: mm. 13-20 A': mm. 21- 28 Postlude: m. 29 stanzas 1 & 2 stanzas 3 & 4 stanzas 5 & 6 The four-bar piano prelude is the longest of any of Robert's songs in this collection and supplies the bulk of the accompanimental material for the entire song (Fig. 24). The overt sexuality of Ruckert's text is represented throughout the setting. The accompaniment, in constant motion, is "pregnant" with versions of the "Clara" motive. Although both six- and four-note variations of "motive P" occur frequently - the latter in sequence (Fig. 25) - the "pure" "Clara" motive ("motive X") is interwoven in the counterpoint at mm. 3-4, 6-7, 22-23 (Fig. 26). Its appearance at mm. 22-23 is of particular interest. At this point in the text, the poet's "songs" are pouring down over the beloved ("Da quellen auf die Lieder..."). "Clara" appears under "den vollsten Fruhling" - "the fullest spring" (Fig. 27). Given Robert's remark that "1 was completely inside you while composing them" (p. 31 above), and the fact that he changed Ruckert's original vollen to the superlative form, the metaphorical inversion is highly erotic. Tension (McClary's "thrusting eddies," perhaps) is built through various means. The sequential passage underlying the second stanza of the text (mm. 8-12, Fig. 28) elucidates the 75 cyclical return of the blue skies, green meadows and the regeneration of spring. Regarding the next passage (mm. 12-15) an early reviewer - writing for the Allgemeine musikalische Zeitung (vol.44, 19 January 1842) - notes that "we find, especially, from the words 'und hier am Busen lehnet,' the piling up of harmonies so irksome and so little supported that they remind us of weeds, which appear quickly enough with the beginning of spring."18 The "weeds" are the result of an ascending sequence that takes place over a dominant pedal (mm. 13-15, Fig. 29). However, in the text, the beloved is attached to the poet like an object: "And here on my bosom/ With sweet love/ Reclines my beloved." As the chords wander through the sequence, the pedal point keeps the harmony - hence the beloved - firmly grounded on the dominant. The beloved's attachment to the Dichler via the dominant continues until measure 20, where a rilard draws the section to a close on V, the Dichler's "Brust" (Fig. 30). The form of the music, constantly bringing in new motives, suggests continuous action. While sequential passages and pedal points create "waves of harmonic intensification"19 - perhaps a representation of the nineteenth-century male in action - the impact of these waves is amplified by chromaticism and the disparate phraseology between the melody and the accompaniment. Hallmark notes that "the piano's phrases are out of kilter with the voice's melody, and Schumann carefully phrased and accented the music to bring this out."20 Although phrase endings occasionally occur together - particularly at important cadence points such as sectional divisions (mm. 12, and 20, for example) and just before the 18See Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 19. 19Ibid., 20. 20Ibid., 19-20. 76 sequential passage at measure 9 - more frequently the piano begins a phrase just as the voice is ending. This syncopation sets up a recurring minor second dissonance on beat 2 (mm. 13 and 14, Fig. 31). Compared with the sophisticated harmonic treatment and phraseology, the melody of the song in itself seems unremarkable. Two rhythmic motives that comprise the bulk of the vocal line tend to become monotonous (Fig. 32). The reviewer who complained of "irksome harmonies" also found fault with the "constantly identical rhythm of the melody (which taken by itself seems a bit like a penny ballad [bdnkeLscingerische])."21 Primarily the domain of the Bdnkelsanger (street singer), the "penny ballad" implies two things. First, the folk idiom (which is not evident in the poem itself) indicates, possibly, a lack of seriousness in the treatment of the subject matter, in other words, a parodic response. On the other hand, we might view the folk idiom itself as a metaphor for sexuality: an acknowledgement of the visceral and corporeal as opposed to the autonomy of "art" music. Given Ruckert's metaphoric inversion of creativity/sexuality, Robert may have hit upon the essence of the poem, that is, the inseparability of "life" and "art." 21Ibid., 20. 77 Figures 24-32 "Ich hab' in mich gesogen" - Robert Schumann Fig. 24 Mm. 1-4 Einfach innig. 1.1, Fig. 25 "Clara" - six and four-note forms ("motive P") m. 1 inner voice Mm. 12-13 (piano) ^ 3 Fig. 26 "Clara" ("motive P") mm. 3-4 (cf. mm. 6-7, 22-23) 7-t ^"'ftf !"h>- f r — ^ — *t . ^ i r ~f T 78 Fig. 27 "Ich hab' in mich gesogen" "Clara" motive mm. 22-23 J h w ^ r — t Fig. 28 Sequence mm. 8-12, piano, outer voices. fl u '' ' *~hl 0 t r 6r * ' - —m m # 1r Fig. 29 Sequence mm. 12-15 (reduction) I -&-79 Fig. 30 "Ich hab' in mich gesogen" cadence, m. 20 Fig. 31 "Ich hab' in mich gesogen" mm. 12-14 "out of kilter" phrases Fig. 32 Rhythmic motives Mm. 3-4 M . 2 80 • No. 6 "Liebste, was kann denn uns scheiden?" - Robert Schumann Robert's musical setting adheres to the folk idiom inherent in the text, following the generic, strophic form of the poem: all four stanzas of the text are sung to the same music. Each strophe is clearly divided into two sections (A: mm. 1-6, B: mm. 7-19) In the A section, in contrast to the complexity of sequences and phraseology in the previous song, allusion to folk song is clear in the accompaniment and recitative-like melody. Blocked chords in measures 1 -6 suggest the simple strumming of a guitar, yet the °7 harmony on "scheiden" (m.6) lends a touch of sophistication (Fig. 33). The B section, on the other hand, suggests a dramatic ballad-type setting with a fuller accompaniment. Once again, the melody evokes the "penny ballad" with its lilting, repeated rhythms. The rhythm of the first measure is almost identical to one of the rhythmic motives in "Ich hab' in mich gesogen," albeit in 6/8 time rather than 4/4 (Fig. 34). Re-use of the rhythmic motive and overall simplicity of this song suggests some sort of mocking commentary on song 5. The term "duet" applies somewhat loosely to this song. As previously mentioned, Hallmark suggests that "Liebste, was kann denn uns scheiden?" is an explicit male text with an accompanying voice. In a similar vein, Eric Sams remarks that this song "has the idea of duetting thrust upon it."22 The "accompanying voice" chimes in on the word "Nein" (marked zu Zwei, m.6), then again in the final three bars. Although the gender of the two voices is not specified, we can assume that the "main" singer is male because the text is addressed to 2 2With the exception of a few brief remarks, Sams does not discuss the Liebesfriihling duets in any detail. Sams, The Songs of Robert Schumann, 179. 81 "Liebste." Consequently, the female voice is used like an appendage, in complete agreement with the male voice (Fig. 35). Remembering, too, that in the previous song the beloved is "attached" to the Dichler's breast, in this song she is now attached to his voice. Through all this simplicity and folk-like character, there is no mistaking who the song is addressed to: the male voice sings the word "dein" to "Clara's" "motive P" in measures 14 -15 (Fig. 36). The gender of the accompanying voice is not asserted until the end of the song, where the singers address each other simultaneously as "Liebste" and "Liebster." Even so, this text repetition at the end is Robert's, not Ruckert's. 82 Figures 33-36 "Liebste, was kann denn uns scheiden" - Robert Schumann Fig. 33 Accompaniment mm. 1-6. // t ' 1 pi J 7 S N X 3 "£ Fig. 34 Rhythmic motive, mm. 1-2 Rhythmic motive, song 5, m. 13 Fig. 35 Mm. 15-19. ritqrd. . „ „ 1 i „ j • i . . „ . wol . TO, o Lieb . ster sein. 1^4/»ol . Ion wr, o liR-b_ sfc sein. Z U 7 / » M . , , T . , TTOI . lea wir, o Liieb . sre sein. ritartl. Fig. 36 "Clara" "motive P" mm. 13-14. 83 *• No. 7 "Schon ist das Fest des Lenzes" - Robert Schumann Although the idea of duetting is not immediately apparent in the poem itself, Robert set "Schon ist das Fest des Lenzes" as a full-fledged duet, that is, both voices are written continuously on two staves. Although Riickert's poem consists of two four-line stanzas, where the last two lines are identical to the first two (a ba1), Robert rearranges this division (Ex. 4) Ex. 4 A section: mm. 2-14 Interlude: mm. 14-15 A 1 section: mm. 16-24 Text: stanza 1 & first Text: last two lines of stanza 2, two lines of stanza 2 repetition of last line. The use of canon influences the textual subdivisions and overall form of the duet (an asymmetrical A A 1). After an introductory chord, the voices proceed in canon at the unison (Fig. 37). The folk-like simplicity is occasionally disrupted by dissonance resulting from the canon. In measure 13, the canon concludes as the voices join together on the text "und singe mir dabei." A two-bar piano interlude brings back the opening melody - in IV (D b major, mm. 14-15) - creating a sectional division. Following this interlude, the voices continue together up to measure 18, but the canon returns briefly for three measures (mm. 18-20). At the conclusion of the duet, the voice again come together on the text "der Tage drei" (mm.21-24). Repetition of the text "der Tage drei," along with a rilard "extends" the "festival of spring." Bearing in mind the "accompanying voice" from the previous duet, the use of canon for setting this text seems contradictory. Although the poem calls for freedom and spontaneity, that spontaneity is restricted by a compositional technique requiring slavish 84 imitation. The "accompanying" voice in this song is barely freer than the female voice in song 6, while the canon easily (even too easily) suggests a subaltern position. Perhaps even more striking is the fact that, unlike song 7 where the identity of the "accompanying" voice is not revealed until the last line, Robert specified the gender of the two singers - soprano and tenor - even though the text is explicitly male. Hallmark notes that: "The voices are explicitly labeled in the two full-fledged duets, songs 7 and 12, as 'Sopran' and 'Tenor,'" but, he continues (in a footnote): "The duets are so designated in the first edition. Curiously [!], the Gesamtansgabe reproduces the voice designation only for the closing duet, leaving song 7 unlabeled."23 We can only speculate as to why the label was removed. It may have been a simple oversight or an editorial decision. As the editor, Clara could have made any number of changes. However, there is speculation that Clara was the editor in name only. Preparation of the Gesamtaitsga.be was an enormous project; because of Clara's advancing age and still gruelling schedule, many other hands, including Brahms, aided her in the process.24 Despite the labeling, and the fact that the duet could be sung by two males, Robert has left a significant clue as to the identity of the speaker and the addressee. The bass (piano), from mm. 6-7, "sings" "motive P": C - B b - A b - G - A b. At the same time, the (presumably) male singer replicates the motive, transposed a third higher (Eb - D t j - C - B l ) -C), with the text "hast du ein Lieb, bekranz es," indicating, perhaps, that Clara is the unnamed "Lieb" (harmonized with a first inversion augmented V!). Interestingly, this 23Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 23, note 55. 24See, for example, Nancy Reich, Clara Schumann: The Artist and the Woman. 85 Figures 37-39 "Schon ist das Fest des Lenzes" - Robert Schumann Fig. 37 Canon, mm. 2-4. 'JLL^ ^ t_ Sdiiin i-t das Fest -K-es Lenzes, doi-h w.:ihrt cs nur der Ta _ p: drei is S : rfes 4^ Siliiin ist das Fest nes LeiLzes. doth wiilirt es liur der Ta _ £e drei!. Last du ein Einfach, nicht rasch. 3r Fig. 38 "Clara" motives ("motive X"), mm. 6-8. & C H i i r i r / it * C - L - A -C - L - f l -H f r £ : £ f = F = A M 3 f 3 ^ c - i_ - A- R- " Fig. 39 "Clara" motive ("motiveF'), mm.12-13. ^15 f f f 2: ScWnk, Unot Si 05 - e m'»r d o . -3 fr c V3- fc ScVie^.urvJ. sirt^-e wir ek- b e i . 86 transposition connects to another cipher: Eb - C -B q, in Robert's code, is "Es - C- H" - Sch (umann)! Because of the canon, an overlapping statement of the motive also appears in the (presumably) female singer's part, mm. 7-8 (Fig. 38). Possibly, Robert intended himself and Clara as the two singers: with her motive, he invites her to "singe mir dabei" - "she" responds with the same motive and text in the following measure (Fig. 39). »• No. 8 "Flugel! Flugel!" - Robert Schumann In the previous chapter, it was noted that "Flugel! Flugel!" presented a significant shift or turning point in this group of poems, in its seriousness, pessimism, and reflective tone. This shift is preserved in the musical setting, which departs radically from Robert's preceeding contributions to the Liebesfhihling Lieder. Difficulties in the interpretation of the poem extend to the musical setting as well. The first five stanzas of Ruckert's poem, each beginning with the exclamatory "Flugel! Flugel!," imply some type of strophic treatment; the shift in mood of the last five stanzas indicates some type of departure, yet still remains within the strophic model. Robert's conception of form is derived, at least in part, from this poetic form, as he preserves Ruckert's division at the midpoint of the text. The composer, however, sees a further subdivision of the last five stanzas into two distinct sections, in effect producing a ternary A B A 1 structure. Sectional divisions are clearly articulated by changes in tempo and meter (Ex. 5). 87 Ex. 5 A section: mm. 1-48 B section: mm. 49-72 A 1 section: mm.73-104 stanzas 1 - 5 stanzas 6, 7, & 8 stanzas 9 & 10, postlude [Leiderischaftlich 6/8] [Sehr langsam 4/4] [Tempo 16/8] The three sections are further differentiated by modified-strophic and through-composed techniques. As noted above, the first five stanzas of the text are strophic in nature. Throughout the A section, Robert maintains a steady quarter-note/eighth-note rhythmic pattern (matching the trochaic meter of the text), but he disguises the inherent "strophism" by varying and recombining the melodic motives, by reorganizing the phraseology of some lines and through repetition of text. Of further interest in the A section is the reorganization and grouping within and among the stanzas, thus undercutting the symmetry. The first four lines of the first stanza have a symmetrical structure of 8/5/8/5 syllables. Robert treats the words "Flugel! Flugel!" as recitative, separated from the remainder of the statement "um zu fliegen/ Uber Berg und Thai." "Flugel" from the next line (line 3 of the first stanza) operates as a musical elision between the two phrases. It seems to be shifted backward, tacked on to the end of the previous line, while literally it constitutes the beginning of the next. As a result, the first stanza of the text is reorganized into completely uneven groupings that alter the metric structure of the lines (Ex. 6). 88 Ex. 6 Ruckert's stanza Robert's grouping Flugel! Flugel! um zu fliegen [4] Tiber Berg und Thai. [3] Flugel! .Flugel! [2] Um zu fliegen iiber Berg und Thai, Flugel [6] Flugel, um mein Herz zu wiegen [4] Um mein Herz zu wiegen auf den Morgens Strahl. [6] Auf den Morgens Strahl. [3] In Ruckert's version the number of stressed syllables in every stanza alternates four/three, four/three ( a total of fourteen stressed syllables per stanza), whereas the two musical phrases are each comprised of six stressed syllables (a total of only twelve). The dotted half note on "Strahl" (m.10) extends the second of these phrases to seven stressed beats, producing an uneven total of thirteen. In general, the composer appears to have studiously avoided Ruckert's four/three meter (in contrast, the strophic setting of "Liebste, was kann denn uns scheiden?" follows Ruckert's meter precisely). The wings all but disappear in the last five stanzas of the text, posing a significant shift in the poetic mood as well as the musical setting. These five stanzas, though, are distributed in two sections, B (stanzas 6,7, and 8) and A 1 (stanzas 9 and 10). In the B section (mm.49-72), the tempo slows to Sehr langsam and the meter changes from 6/8 to 4/4. Unlike the first A section, the melody is through-composed. The final two stanzas of the text allude to wings but do not mention them specifically, yet the music returns to the tempo, meter, and melodic motives of the A section. Perhaps it constitutes an answer to the lilting opening. Icarus's plunge is greeted with a horn-call-like melody in F# minor (Fig. 40), followed by a sixteen measure postlude that brings the song to a heroic conclusion. 89 As noted in the previous chapter, the poem does not appear to be "spoken" by either of the main characters in the "dialogue." The harmonic language of this setting indicates that this is indeed the case: all of the songs to this point are in flat keys (nos. 1, 3, 6, and 7 in Ab major, no. 2 in f minor/A b major, no. 4 in Db major, and no. 5 in F major). "Flugel! Flugel!" suddenly introduces a sharp key signature. However, a firm tonal center is never established, and the song "takes flight" in F# minor despite its beginning in B major. Hallmark describes this "generally restless tonality" as follows: Though it carries a key signature of five sharps and takes off in B major, the music detours to another key as early as m. 6. And while the closing vocal phrase is securely in Fft minor, the coda of the piano recasts that vocal phrase in B minor (iv) before cadencing to F#. Though retrospectively one can analyze the song's shifts as parts of a large pattern in Fft minor, the experience of the song as it unfolds is of constant flux. Even at the end while the cadence is harmonically unambiguous, the rhythmic proportion - the abaiptness of the ending - casts doubt on the conclusiveness and stability of the key.25 As Hallmark notes, symptoms of instability appear in the form of open-ended progressions (mm. 32, 76, 80, Fig. 41) and diversions from the implied goal (mm. 18, 36, Fig. 42). Tonal instability is analogous to the male striving or unfulfilled longing in the text. The most modulatory music in the cycle is thus reserved for the most unambiguously male text. Recalling Hallmark's summary of the poem, we are reminded that the text is "distinctly a soliloquy without reference to the beloved." However, this does not appear to be the case in the musical setting, as the melody is overflowing with the "Clara" motive. In the A section, "motive X" is embedded in each of the four distinct phrases (a, b, c, and d, Fig. 43). Because these phrases are arranged in a quasi-rondo fashion - a b c c1 b' b2 d d1 c2 b3 - the "Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 16, note 43 90 Figures 40-43 "Flugel! Flugel!" - Robert Schumann Fig. 40 "Icarus" melody, mm. 80-88. te i l l te | M h 1 1 ft -*—7 * s J Son- r\er\ _ V>ra.nA der\ — +-i<j ScKrnel-2*+., T - VCar S+ar+z. ins 2IZ 21 SiC er. r-Wt ? 0 : = / — ' s P$ fc> * # 5" 5" B'. v. v: 91 Fig. 43 ("Flugel! Fliigel!") a) Mm. 4-7 \ k \ i h i s * *- " > 5 = J * J J T T — e b)Mm. 7-10 te c)Mm. 11-14 f * 4—4 1 1 l> 1 d) Mm. 28-32 mm 92 motive returns over and over; consequently, with each appearance, the association between motive and image becomes more and more blurred. Except for two brief instances, the "Clara" motive is never directly connected to "wings," the central image in the poem. In the first instance, the word'Tlugel," acting as an elision between two phrases, enters on the tail end of the motive (m.6). The second instance occurs in the B section (m. 53), where "Flugel" is repeated (the repetition is Robert's, not Ruckert'). Instead of a direct connection with wings, the motive is more often associated with the the unattainable, the elements or obstacles that the poet, aided by the power of the wings, seeks to overcome or regain. "Clara" therefore "signifies" the mountain and valley (m. 6), the sea (m. 12), life and death (mm. 16-17), youth (m. 21), the nightingale (mm. 39-40), and roses (m. 41). Adding further to this multiplicity of meanings, in measure 67, the motive is also associated with the "1" of the poem: "flihl ich mich." Therefore the motive is as ambiguous and unstable as the tonality of the song. • No. 9 "Rose, Meer und Sonne" and No. 10 "O Sonn', o Meer, o Rose!" - Robert Schumann The textual pairing of the two poems, "Rose, Meer und Sonne," and " 0 Sonn', o Meer, o Rose!," observed in the previous chapter, is preserved in their musical setting. Like the texts, common elements pervade both songs. As we shall see, there are implicit connections to "Flugel! Flugel!" as well. Whereas "Flugel! Flugel!" serves as a dramatic turning point, "Rose, Meer und Sonne" and " 0 Sonn', o Meer, o Rose!," initiate the journey back to the more idyllic scenario of the previous songs. 93 As noted in Example 1, the ten stanzas of "Rose, Meer und Sonne" allow a tripartite division according to the images in the text - rose, sea, and sun. This division is preserved in the strophic-refrain setting of song 9 (Ex.7): Ex. 7 Strophe 1: mm.3-26 Strophe 2: mm.28-51 Strophe 3:mm.53-76 Coda: mm.78-99 Stanza 1 (refrain),2,3 Stanza 4 (refrain) 5,6 Stanza 7 (refrain), 8,9 Stanza 10 "Rose" "Sea" "Sun" Refrain and Postlude Stanza 10 returns as a final refrain to round off the setting. As we can see from the diagram, the large-scale triple division extends to the next level, that is, to the grouping of three stanzas per strophe, which, accordingly, is preserved also at the musical level, as each of the three stanzas within the strophe is set each time to the same music (See phrases a, b, and c, Fig. 44). Although the tripartite structure of the song appears to be analogous to the three images in the text, those images all converge into one - ein Bild - the image of the (presumably) female beloved. That image is carefully built up in the accompaniment, as the texture of the arpeggios becomes thicker with each strophe (Fig. 45). However, the words "sind ein Bild der" are treated differently each time (Fig. 46), indicating, perhaps, that although the rose, sea and sun are "one" image, that image is somewhat transmutable. If, as Hallmark suggests, in Riickert's Liebesfriihling the rose, sea, and sun are metaphors for the beloved of either sex, then the notion of transmutability is plausible. In light of his performance theory, he further proposes that, although the gender of the "beloved" is not ambiguous ("der Liebsten mein" is feminine), the text could be easily emended to suit a 94 female singer.26 Whereas such an alteration seems insignificant outside of the musical context, Robert's intention seems clear: each repetition of the text "der Liebsten mein" is sung to "Clara" "motive P" (Fig. 47). Nonetheless, the composer also provides an interesting twist to this metaphorical connection. "Motive P" occurs three more times, in the vocal line, with the text "faBt mein ganzes Leben ein" ("encompasses my whole life" mm. 9-10, 34-35, 59-60, Fig. 48). For the fourth repetition of this text, in the final refrain, " motive P" is transformed into "motive X," appearing first in the bass line, then in the vocal line (mm. 82-85, Fig. 49). The overlapping of the motive in the outer voices literally "encompasses" the song, in much the same manner as the mussel enclosed the pearl in song 1. 'Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 23. 95 Figures 44-49 "Rose, Meer und Sonne" - Robert Schumann Fig. 44 a) Melody mm. 3-10 ^ o S - e fAcer ur\d S>o«"»- c><i- S»rv4. ein — s+eo m e i n , dlie m'rV ih-fec Won- ne - j ^ L rrvsin 3cm — zes Le - b b)mm. 11-18 = ) M ' 1 1% 1 1 P fr i? ft (\\- U r G W e f . ^°s — sen, ' «U - * e«'TYviu. ^ FrilW - linjs Is P h f f \ f^l—f IE/ * * [ §\\ * i. 5 = M 2=2 r»u.c, c) mm. 19-26 * r r ==p ; ^ [? 1> W 3 3 1 Z ' f n I 7>—y^ : |> 1 |' J —o— 96 Fig. 45 Strophe 1, mm. 1-2 Ruhig, die letzten Verse mit steigendum Ausdruck. • Kn - »c,Meeruud Sou . uc siud ein Bild der Strophe 2, mm. 28-29 Strophe 3, mm.53-54 siud eiu Bild der Liub.stvn mein, die mit ib.rer Fig. 46. m. 5 m. 30 m. 55 m. 80 (c.f. m.30) \\\\ rr\ * f 1 h h . „ 1 P 1 2 = •.noi. eir\ "SAi A«r s - i r J i e;*"BiU. d « r sird. eir>Ty,ld der sifsd eTn"BUd. dec 97 Fig. 47 "Clara" "motive P" mm. 5-6 (c.f. mm.30-31, 55-56). k — i — i H "1 *>'—— ) — « — 1 Fig. 48 "Clara" "motive P" mm.9-10 (c.f. mm. 30-31, 59-60) Fig. 49 "Clara" "motive X" outer voices, mm. 82-85. mm fell . z<s Le — b«\ e i f\ f r T 98 Whereas the first text for song 9 is comprised of ten simple quatrains, which Robert organized into three complex musical strophes plus a final refrain, the three stanzas of "O Sonn', o Meer, o Rose!" did not require this reoganization. The A B A 1 design of each strophe is analogous to the tripartite structure of song 9: Ex. 8 A section: mm. 1-6 B section: mm. 7-16 A 1 section: mm. 17-20 Lines 1-3 Lines 4-7 Lines 8-10 Concurrent with the large scale design, allusions to song 9 are even clearer in the reuse of the head motive, tempo - marked "Tempo, wie im vorigen Lied" - harmonic language, and postlude. The head motive is a simple rhythmic variation of song 9 (Fig. 50). Although the large-scale harmonic progressions differ slightly (song 9: 1 - IV -vi - 111 -1, song 10: I - vi - iii— ii -1, reductions shown in Fig. 51), both songs are firmly rooted in B major. Hallmark's reduction (reproduced here at Fig. 52) reveals a strong parallelism between song 9 mm. 11-14 and song 10 mm. 7-10. In song 9, the progression is in IV (E major), while the parallel progression in song 10 is in iii (dft minor). These progressions are then transposed: song 9 mm. 19-22 (vi - gjt minor) and song 10 mm. 11-14 (ii - eft minor). The postlude of song 10 is a truncated version of song 9, omitting mm. 92-95 (Fig. 53). Naturally, the two songs share one other important element; the "Clara" motive. Whereas song 9 used both the "P" and "X" versions of the motive, song 10 uses only "motive X." In further contrast to song 9, the motive in song 10 does not appear to be directly connected to the beloved, or to the three central images of sun, sea, or rose. Instead, it is associated with the images in line 3 of each text stanza (mm. 5-6). The motive does not 99 signify the "sun," but "die Sterne" - the stars over which the sun rises "triumphantly." These stars fade and disappear in the sun's radiance; a more conventional reading of the sun as dominant and therefore masculine. Likewise, the motive is associated with "die Stromen," the streams, which "throw themselves passionately" into the sea. The streams have masculine connotations, "fertilizing" the maternal sea. Finally, the motive is not the rose, but "ein buntes Griin" - the most ambiguous and subordinate of these images. The rose subdues this "quarrelsome folk," winding the "buntes Griin" as a garland around itself. Consequently, the motive that "encompasses" song 9 appears to be metaphorically inverted in song 10. Nonetheless, a portion of the shared material from song 9 and song 10 is also found in "Flugel! Flugel!." For example, the outer voices of song 8, mm. 12-13 are similar to those of song 9, mm. 8-9 (Fig. 54). A minor seventh leap in the piano alone, then in the vocal line, of song 10 (mm. 7-10), is drawn from mm. 58 and 62 of song 8. Hallmark also draws parallels between this portion of song 10 and the outlined seventh of mm. 11-18, 28-36, and 73-80 of song 8.27 Although these passages occur over a dominant harmony, the interrelationship is less clear than the minor seventh leap. Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 15. 100 Figures 50-54 "O Sonn', o Meer, o Rose" - Robert Schumann Fig. 50 "Head" motive Song 9 Song 10 0j!J>J>J'lf J -f f--) 1 1 Fig. 51 Large-scale harmonic progression Song 9 © © ® ® m Y.0 _ r "Br-: Song 10 r-r s X : r*>c ^ H * - * S — h-i <y- p A 7^ ; - 0 1 r _ _ _ — Z / fry—0—— r ^ v — ^ - t -e 1 1 > 101 Fig. 52 Reduction Song 9 it Oi) •i \ if. |T f) J b I* E p i I a r=3Fr Song 10 76i) v> (>*) 3 •f-c * 1 a. Fig. 53 Postlude (reduction) Song 9 mm. 88-90, song 10 mm. 21-24. i A j ry% ft: Fig. 54 Outer voices Song 8, mm. 12-13 Song 9, mm. 8-9 fak—— . „ . M M ' ' * ap — * ^ * * * * m H t IV"** , , * 1 —m * # * * 102 Given that the texts of songs 8, 9, and 10 appear in that order in Riickert's Liebesfriihling, the musical parallelism is, perhaps, understandable. Hallmark speculates that: One cannot help but wonder if Schumann's reuse in songs 9 and 10 of music from song 8 is connected with recurring images or ideas in the poetic texts. No obvious textual linking is present, but one might argue that "Flugel!" is concerned with unfulfilled longing, whereas songs 9 and 10 carry texts of fulfillment.28 However, we might also speculate that if the tonal and motivic instability of song 8 represents male striving, then the stability and simplicity of songs 9 and 10 is analogous to a feminine representation. • "Warum willst du Andre fragen" - Clara Schumann Like "Liebst du um Schonheit," the "female" voice or persona is only implicit: Riickert's "gaze" scenario is not unequivocally "gendered." Clara's setting underscores the ambiguous subjectivity of the text, with a few surprises along the way. Clara has set Ruckert's poem in a modified-strophic form, akin to the A A 1 structure of song 4. Unlike the previous song, however, this text has only three stanzas (Ex. 9). Ex. 9 A section: Prelude: mm. 1-4 Text stanza 1: mm.5-12 (a) Text stanza 2:mm. 13-20 (a1) Text repetition: mm.35-38 (a3 - closing A 1 section: Piano interlude: mm.21-24 Text stanza 3: mm.25-32, (a2) Postlude: mm.39-42 Balance is achieved via text repetition and a piano interlude in the A 1 section. Ibid., 16. 103 In the A section, modifications to the strophes are subtle. The melody for both text stanzas (a, a 1) is almost identical: whereas the first ends with a semitone ascent to E b 5 followed by a descending leap to E b 4 (mm. 11-12), the second strophe closes the section on E b 5 after a brief melisma on "Augen" (mm. 19-20, Fig. 55). Although the two strophes share the same melodic goal - E b - the harmonic progressions are also altered. At m. 12, the first strophe closes on an applied dominant, V 6 5 /I, approached by a voice-leading vii 4 3 chord on the last beat of m.l 1 (Fig. 56a). The second strophe also closes on an applied dominant, V 7 , this time in D b major, but is approached instead by ii 4 3 followed by iv6 in that key (m.19, Fig. 56b). These modifications are carried out in a different manner in the A 1 section. As noted above, this section contains only one text stanza, with the last two lines of the text repeated. Like the A section, the first six measures of the melody (mm.25-30), are identical to those of the first two strophes (a2). However, both the melodic and harmonic goals are altered. The melody reaches its apogee at F 3 in m.32. Finally, the tension created by the juxtaposition of I and IV at the beginning of each strophe (mm.5, 13, and 25, and the prelude m.l,'postlude m.39, see Fig.57) is released, as the climax is "fulfilled" on the word "dich!" by a perfect authentic cadence in D b major (Fig. 58). This harmonic progression and climax are foreshadowed at the end of the A section, but the early climax is aborted as the voice is left hanging on to the E b 5 (over V 7 / IV, m.20) while the piano proceeds alone to the subdominant. Perhaps these open-ended harmonic progressions and diversions are analogous to the ambiguous subjectivity of the text, just as tonal "flux" is analogous to unfulfilled longing in 104 "Flugel! Flugel!." However, one interesting plot twist remains. Throughout Robert's settings, we have observed his use of the "Clara" motive - often at highly significant points in relation to the poetic text - and speculated as to Clara's knowledge of the cipher. There is once occurrence of the motive in Clara's song 2, that occurrence is perhaps incidental. In the present song Clara utilizes a transposed version (Eb-D b-C-B \\ -C), embedded in an inner voice at the same point in each of the three strophes (Fig. 59). The first appearance of the motive, at mm. 7-8, accompanies the text "[mein]-en treu mit dir," the second, at mm. 15-16, occurs with "dem eignen Wahn," and the third at mm. 27-28 on "sie gegen mich." Whereas in Robert's songs the motive indicates that Clara is the "addressee," it indicates, in this case (and in song 2), that Clara is the speaker. The motive is therefore ambiguous; its significance depends on which composer used it. Although false gossip, delusions, and "testifying"29 are supported by a transposed version, a "pure" version of "motive X" (C-B b-Ab-G-Ab) occurs at mm. 33-34 and 35-36, first in the piano alone, then with the text "[mein]-e Lippen sagen" (Fig. 60). Finally, the truth is revealed, as the text "Aug', ich liebe dich" is sung to "motive P" (Fig. 61). The eyes hold the power of the traditionally masculine gaze, Clara's use of the motive appropriates that power to the female voice, heightening the ambiguity of Ruckert's text. 29Ruckert's poem, in fact, provides a stunning corollary with the Schumanns' courtship and Clara's break with her father: Wieck spread false accusations and rumours about Robert and Clara in an attempt to prevent the marriage. See Reich, "The Break with Wieck," Clara Schumann: The Artist and the Woman, 78 - 102. 105 Figures 55-61 "Warum willst du Andre fragen" - Clara Schumann Fig. 55 Mm. 11-12 Mm. 19-20 Wi-cUr\ flu-^^n n'.erl i^eC ol(c Au. i &r\ A. n I Fig. 56 Harmonic progression (reduction) a) Mm. 11-12 b) Mm. 19-20 FT CJ * , » * — « — 0 ¥ ^ » — ^ : l , t ^ » * 3 — v — • — & — •4-"4 s ^ 4 U H *V Fig. 57 M . 1 (c.f. mm. 5, 13) 1 4 1 frKi— ; 2—< pl J J \ J V V 4 • f X 106 Fig. 58 Cadence mm. 31-32 ' 0 0 0 0* -f-Wff-t. t> * Fig. 59 "Clara" "motive X" mm. 7-8 (c.f. mm. 15-16, 27-28) Fig. 60 Bass mm. 33-34 (c.f. mm. 35-36) c - L - A - "R - A Fig. 61 "Motive P" mm. 37-38. 22 Au^ ; \'»e - be dicU\ 107 • No. 12 "So wahr die Sonne scheinet" - Robert Schumann The Liehesfriihling concludes with Robert's gentle duet. The two voices, so apparent in Ruckert's poem, are specified by the composer: soprano and tenor/baritone. Like the previous duets, however, these voices coalesce into one, as the singers and the piano move in rhythmic unison throughout the song. Robert sets the two stanzas of Ruckert's text in a relatively symmetrical two-part form (A section: mm. 1-16, A' section: mm. 17-37). The A section is comprised of two eight-bar phrases, antecedent (mm. 1 -8) and consequent (mm.9-16). In contrast to the more adventurous harmonic language displayed in some of the previous songs, the composer relies on a simplest of diatonic progressions: I-V-I. The A' section exhibits the same antecedent/consequent phrase structure. However, a dominant harmony prevails in the antecedent phrase (mm. 17-24), while a brief excursion to the subdominant delays the return of the tonic in the consequent phrase (m.28). Although an early reviewer was unimpressed with the simplicity of the duet,30 in terms of "gendered" voices this setting effectively summarizes the ambiguity inherent in the previous songs. Despite the fact that performance requires two singers, gender is not specified until the final duet. As mentioned earlier, the two "voices" of Ruckert's text are arguably gendered - the first stanza "spoken" by the male, the second by the female. Yet, in Robert's setting, the soprano carries the melody of the first stanza while the tenor/baritone 3 0 "It oversteps the bounds of simplicity, even of the popular, so much that it sinks down to the somewhat ordinary, as other songs do by striving for originality." See Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 20. 108 harmonizes at the third below (Fig. 62). It appears, at least in the score, that the male singer then takes charge of the melody for the first half of the second stanza by repeating the opening melody, this time in V, then giving way to the soprano at the cadence in mm. 23-24 (Fig. 63). However, the voice sounds an octave lower than written, so the melody is still "below" the soprano. Compared with "Liebst, was kann denn uns scheiden," the singers' roles appear to be reversed, that is, the male singer is the "accompanying voice," always subordinate to the soprano (although not nearly as "silent" as the female singer in the previous duet!). This role reversal is underscored at two key moments in the duet. At m. 12, and again at m.28, the tenonfaaritone leaps up an octave from E b 4 to E b 5 (Fig. 64). Despite the registeral shift, the male voice is still "below" the soprano. Following the octave leap by the tenor, there is a three-note voice exchange between the two vocal lines (and the outer voices of the piano) on the text "wie ich dich" (mm. 12-13 and 29-30, also Fig. 64). However, the tenor sings an A \\, not an A b. Although the chromatic inflection stems from the underlying harmonic progression (V 6 5 / V), it perhaps indicates an unwillingness to imitate the female voice completely. In addition, this inflection is part of the "Clara" motive ("motive P") in the tenor line with the text "Du liebst mich wie ich dich," (bracketed in Fig. 64). The A \\, sung on the word "dich," suggests that the pure, reciprocal love desired by the female speaker in song 4 is not an equally masculine desire. 109 Figures 62-64 "So wahr die Sonne scheinet" - Robert Schumann Fig. 62 Voice parts, mm. 1-8 I b I Jr J J J 3: 33= p J r i So uaaUr d'ie Son- r\c 5 £ ^ 1 — * ^ r n r j= IA j J> ' =H uoo.hr dec FiriA.V>- )" ^ — | • f^li J- J o 1 — , U —e-= * 1 J ' J J i 4—1 ... Fig. 63 Mm. 17-24 5 j i g f f f f t IP S p r ^ r , t dec blubnj 3 : 110 Fig. 64 "So wahr die Sonne scheinet" mm. 12-14 (c.f. mm.28-30). t>w lielosV m'icV\ u>\£,x \c\y dicl^ . { i V, I i / I f- * J — 111 Finally, Hallmark raises an issue that is central to the notion of "voice" in these songs. In the score used for the present study,31 the two singers share the same text throughout the duet, including the repetition of the penultimate line of the text, "du liebst mich wie ich dich." According to Hallmark, though, "when the two voices join on the closing phrase, Schumann has set the text so that they simultaneously sing the two different lines of the couplet - one sings 'du liebst mich wie ich dich,' the other, 'dich lieb' ich wie du mich.'"32 Hallmark explains: This text underlay appears in Clara's copy of the duet that is part of the Paris manuscript, and it is reproduced faithfully in the first edition. The Gesamtausgabe, however, "corrects" this passage so that both voices sing the first line of the closing couplet, "Du liebst mich wie ich dich." It seems clear that the composer's special, original intention should be reinstated in modern editions and in performances.33 As was the case with the duet "Schon ist das Fest des Lenzes," where the voice designations were removed in the Gesamtausgabe, we are faced with the same dilemma. Who altered the text, and, more importantly, why was it altered9 Although the textual change makes the idea of "one voice-one mind" (or "one heart and one soul," as Robert put it) more convincing, that idea is already undermined by the chromatic inflection of the voice exchange earlier in the setting. Robert and Clara not only recognized the ambiguity inherent in Riickert's texts: their "special, original intention" was to stretch that ambiguity to the limit. 3 1 "Zwolf Gedichte aus F. Riickert's Liebesfriihling fur Pianoforte mit Gesang von Robert und Clara Schumann," Robert Schumanns Werke, edited by Clara Schumann, vol. XIII, no. 2 (Leipzig: Breitkopf & Hartel, 1882. Reprint. Westmead:-Gregg Press International Publishing Ltd., 1968), 2-27. 32Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 20. Italics added. "Ibid. 112 Chapter Four Before attempting to read Robert and Clara's Liebesfhihling as a song "cycle," one must first review how a song "cycle" is typically defined. According to Hallmark, a song cycle is "a group of songs, usually for solo voice and piano, constituting a literary and musical unit."1 Although Hallmark's textbook definition is overly simplified, it captures the prime objective of a song cycle, that is, unity. He goes on to explain that unity can be achieved by meeting one or more of several established criteria. First, the texts are usually, though not always, by a single poet, and may already exist as a "cycle." Robert's Myrthen, drawing on poems from Ruckert, Burns, Heine, Goethe, Mosen, Byron, and Moore is an uncommon exception. Secondly, a concise literary unity may be achieved if the texts share a related theme or suggest some type of narrative: Schubert's Die schdne Miillehn and Winterreise, taken from Wilhelm Miiller, and Robert's Frauenliebe und-Leben (Chamisso) are among the most well known examples of this type. Finally, unity can be achieved by musical means, including the use of closely related keys, common motives, "connective piano interludes" (such as those in Beethoven's An die feme Geliebte), or a reprise of music from the beginning of the cycle at the end.2 Do the Liebesfhihling Lieder constitute a literary unit? Following Hallmark's criteria, they do. The texts are all by a single poet, albeit from a diverse collection that is not "cyclic." •Rufus Hallmark, "Song cycle," The New Harvard Dictionary of Music ed. Don Randel (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1986), 770-771. 2Ibid., 770. Despite the fact that Robert and Clara culled twelve poems out of almost four hundred, the texts share a related theme: for the most part, they describe the male and female point of view of a developing relationship. Furthermore, the quasi-dramatic situation of the "dialogue" between the two lovers, with a "crisis" point at song 8, may not tell a specific story but it does suggest some type of "narrative" outline. In Hallmark's opinion, the songs "do not constitute a narrative," yet they do "share the theme of conjugal love."3 Whether "conjugal love" or "love" in general, the songs seem to meet the criteria for a thematic or narrative unit. If the Liebesfriihling "story" is somewhat tenuous, nonetheless cyclic characteristics unfold through a musical "narrative." Hallmark notes that the songs are "closely related by keys; half of them are in A b , and the rest are related by fifth above or below (Eb , D b ) and by minor third above and below (B, F/f)."4 Although the shift to the sharp key at song 8 (B/f#) obscures the third relationship, B major is the enharmonic equivalent of C b major (III of Ab), the mussel's "key" from song 1. If we compare this key scheme with that of Robert's Frauenliebe und-Leben Op.42, we can see that the detour to a remote key, at a point approximately two-thirds of the way through the "cycle," is not unusual (see Ex . 10). Similarly, a song cycle need not end in the same key in which it began. Taking Robert's cycles as examples, the IJederh-eise Op. 24 (Heine), Myrthen Op. 25, and Frauenliebe und-Leben all end in the same key in which they began (D, A b , and B b respectively), theKerner Lieder Op. 35, IJederb-eise Op. 39 (Eichendorff), and Dichterliebe Op. 48 all end in keys related to the initial one ( E b - A b , f$-F$, and A -Db respectively). We can conclude that the 3Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 13. 4Ibid. 114 tonal plan of the Liebesfriihling is typical of other "Schumann" cycles. Ex. 10 Liebesfriihling Op. 37/12 Song No. Key Frauenliebe und-Leben Op. 42 Song No. Key 1. Ab 2. f/Ab 3. Ab 4. Db 5- F 6. Ab 7. Ab 8. B/ftf 9 B 1. Bb 2. Eb 3. c 4. Eb 5. Bb 6. G 7 D 8. d/Bb 10. B 11. Ab Eb 12. Along with the these key relationships, Hallmark has also discovered a close relationship between Clara's "Liebst du um Schonheit" and Robert's "Rose, Meer und Sonne." He notes that "both songs begin with two identical measures of introductory arpeggiation, followed by vocal melodies that include a leap from the fifth degree up to the tonic and back, and conclude with a stepwise descent from that tonic down to the fifth,"5 (Fig. 65). The relationship tightens in mm. 7-10 (c.f. mm.23-26) of Clara's song and mm. 23-26 of Robert's: the passages share descending thirds in the outer voices and a diatonic circle of fifths progression which both composers break at the cadence on V/vi (the relative minor), before continuing again in I (Fig. 66). Like songs 9 and 10, this musical parallelism draws on related images in the texts: rose/sea/sun and sun/spring/mermaid. Hallmark also speculates Ibid., 16. 115 Fig. 65 Song 4 Mm. 1 -6 ^ | N ich t zu lang-sam <> nirht imrii lie . . be! Song 9 Mm. 1-6 Rnhig,die letzfen VerHe mit steigendcm Ausdrurk. tj» » I r « - " U» - scorer und Son . nu sjnd cinBild dir Licbstenmein, 1 E—jr- * ' J , 116 that "this extended parallelism, surely too much for coincidence, suggests that Clara had Robert's songs in mind as she composed."6 Given the five-month lapse between the time that Robert finished his settings and Clara completed hers, it is possible that Clara heard Robert's songs (even while he was composing them), that she had occasion to sing or play through the piano parts, or otherwise see the scores. There is no evidence in the diaries to confirm this. Despite drawing these subtle connections between Robert and Clara's songs, Hallmark's analysis differs from that presented here in one important aspect. Although he recognizes motivic connections between songs 9 and 10, and songs 1 and 12 (the incipit of the last song is a transposition of the opening melody of song 1, Fig. 67), there are far more extensive connections running throughout the cycle; the "Clara" motive is embedded in every song except song 4. The varied use of the motive suggests a "narrative" in the cycle, supported by the fact that in song 8 the motive, like the text and tonality, reaches a dramatic turning point. Because the motive is used by both composers, to "represent" both masculine and feminine images, it blurs the distinction between two categories that are perceived as diametrically opposed and mutually exclusive. Instead of polarizing the cycle into "male" and "female" songs, the motive acts as a central agent in uniting the composers' voices across gender difference. As a literary and musical unit, Robert and Clara's Liebesfriihling appears to meet most of the general criteria of a "song cycle," yet it diverges from the established criteria in one important respect. Unlike the Liebesfriihling Lieder, "song cycles" are usually for solo voice 6Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 16. 117 Fig. 66 Song 4 Mm. 7-10 118 and piano.7 Interestingly, in his "song cycle" article in the New Harvard Dictionary of Music, Hallmark gives credit to Robert, who "probably invented the cycle for mixed voices."8 The "mixed-voice" cycles cited by Hallmark are Minnespiel Op.101 and Spanisches Liebeslieder Op. 138 (Geibel). Both are written for various combinations of four voices -soprano, alto, tenor, and bass - and include solos, duets, and quartets (nos. 1 and 6 of the Spanisches Liebeslieder are for piano alone). The texts of Minnespiel are also drawn from Ruckert's Liebesfriihling. Perhaps even more interesting, both were composed in 1849, well after Robert and Clara's collaboration. Robert may indeed have "invented" the mixed-voice cycle, but the precedent was set with the Liebesfhihling Lieder.9 Finally, the Liebesfhihling Lieder may have set one other precedent. The "unspoken" rule of the "song cycle' is that it is usually written by only one composer. Our definition of "song cycle" does not deal with joint works, perhaps because the need has never arisen. In light of the Liebesfhihling Lieder, and other similar endeavours, our definition of "song cycle" needs to be adjusted. 7The orchestral Lied flowered around 1900, cultivated by Wolf, Mahler, Strauss and others. See Edward F. Kravitt, "The Orchestral Lied: An Inquiry into its Style and Unexpected Flowering around 1900," Music Review 37 (1976): 209. 'Hallmark, "Song cycle," 770. 9It is important to note that the New Harvard Dictionary article was published in 1986. In his more recent study, Hallmark acknowledges that the Liebesfhihling may indeed have set the precedent for the later mixed-voice cycles. See "The Ruckert Lieder," 23. 119 Epilogue In attempting an "evaluation" of Robert and Clara's Liebesfriihling, one is immediately confronted with a series of problems that have marginalized the songs. Joint works are considered to be novelties; therefore, they automatically occupy a critical wasteland that lies beyond the periphery of the canon. Perhaps even more insidiously, the marginalization of women composers, including Clara, has doomed their works to this ghetto as well. At least five editions of the songs were published during Robert and Clara's life time, indicating the popularity of the Liebesfriihling} Yet no modern performance edition exists, nor is there a complete recording of the entire cycle. Modern critics are generally unsympathetic toward this unique collaboration. Eric Sams, arguably the most vociferous detractor, states that: Something has gone sadly wrong. Perhaps the new element of objectivity in Schumann's work was already somewhat at odds with poems of personal lyric feeling, as in some of the Kerner songs above. With Ruckert's verse the duality is flagrant. Nos 7 and 12 of this opus are in fact duets (not considered here). No. 6 has the idea of duetting thrust upon it. The other songs seem to have a dual aspect of their own. Nos 2, 4, and 11 (also omitted) are acknowledged to be by Clara Schumann; but they have an occasional master touch which is not hers. There is evidence that some, perhaps many, of Clara's songs and indeed much of her music in general had the benefit of Schumann's collaboration. Conversely the Op. 37 songs attributed to Schumann himself do suggest that 'written together' was what he actually meant, in the sense that a primary musical idea by Clara was then developed by him.2 Sams' opinion echoes the critical imbalance surrounding the Liebesfriihling. In 'Hallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 11. 2Sams, The Songs of Robert Schumann, 179. 120 discussing only Robert's solo songs, Sams fails to view the collection as a whole. Shortcomings in some of the songs, whether real or imaginary, are attributed to Clara. "Evidence" that Robert actually composed much of Clara's music simply does not exist.3 Although composition was a secondary activity, we know that Clara had the necessary training, if not always the time, to do so. Across this collection of songs there are, admittedly, some discrepancies in "quality." Robert's "Flugel! Flugel!" seems to "soar" above his other songs, while Clara's "Liebst du um Schonheit" has been called "eines der schonsten, die sie geschrieben hat."4 Although variations in "quality" occur in almost any collection or song cycle, in the case of the Liebesfriihling, perceptions of discrepancies, not the discrepencies themselves, seem to be based more on the composers' gender than on consideration of actual musical evidence. How can this critical imbalance be corrected? To begin with, as Hallmark has done and I have attempted to do here, the songs must be performed, recorded, and discussed as a whole. Taking individual songs out of context not only destroys the integrity of the cycle; it undermines the basic premise of the collaboration. Hallmark points out many of the cyclic characteristics and argues that the songs should be performed as a unit, yet he insists that the songs are "nowhere called a cycle."5 It is worth noting that Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, to 3Not surprisingly, Sams does not cite any sources for this "evidence." 4Richard Hohenemser-Halensee, "Clara Wieck Schumann als Komponistin," Die Musik 20 (1905): 125. "One of the most beautiful that she has written." Tiallmark, "The Ruckert Lieder," 13. 121 whom Hallmark refers shortly after this comment, does use the term "cycle,"6 as does Janina Klassen, whose extensive study of Clara's piano works appeared in print at the same time as Hallmark's article.7 The second step to resolving this imbalance is a much more arduous task. Resistance to the label "song cycle," stems not from the fact that the Liebesfriihling Lieder do not constitute a literary or musical unit, but from the fact that they were written by a male and female composer. Nineteenth century western cultural attitudes about gender - particularly the belief that women are "inferior" and "unaesthetic" - still persist to a certain degree, demanding that women composers remain on the margins. Retrieving their works, and the Liebesfriihling Lieder, out of this ghetto involves changing society's attitudes about gender in general, and women composers in particualr. As American pianist Amy Fay wrote in 1900: "If it has required 50,000 years to produce a male Beethoven, surely one little century ought to be vouchsafed to create a female one!"8 Clara Schumann may not be a'Temale Beethoven," but the Liebesfriihling Lieder are worthy of our attention. 6Fischer-Dieskau, Robert Schumann Words and Music, 115. 7Janina Klassen, Clara Wieck-Schumami: Die Virtuosin a/s Komponistin (Basel: Barenreiter Kassel, 1990), 8. 8Neuls-Bates, Women in Music: An Anthology, 218. Bibliography Abel, Elizabeth, ed. Writing and Sexual Difference. 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Liebst du um Schonheit V. Ich hab ' in mich gesogen VI. Liebste, was kann denn uns scheiden VII. Schon ist das Fest des Lenzes VIII. Fliigel! Fliigel! IX. Rose, Meer und Sonne X. O Sonn', o Meer, o Rose! XI. Warum wills/ du andre fragen XII. So wahr die Sonne scheinet Composer Robert Schumann Clara Schumann Robert Schumann Clara Schumann Robert Schumann Robert Schumann (duet) Robert Schumann (duet) Robert Schumann Robert Schumann Robert Schumann Clara Schumann Robert Schumann (duet) 132 Table 2. This table provides a listing of Robert Schumann's Ruckert settings (excluding the Liebesfriihling Lieder, Op. 37), and, where possible, the location of the texts in Riickerts Gedichte (Erlangen, 1837-1840). 2.1 Robert Schumann's Ruckert settings: Opus Title Date Location 25 Myrthen 1. "Widmung" (Du meine Seele) 1840 L. 1/3.i* 11. "Mutter! Mutter" L. IV/31.i 12. "LaB mich ihm am Busen hangen" L. IV/32.i 25. "Aus den ostlichen Rosen" ? 26, "ZumschluB" ? 51. Lieder and Gesdnge Vol. II 1842 2. "Volksliedchen" ? 83. Drei Gesdnge 2. "Die Blume der Ergeburg" 1850 ? 78. Vier Due tie fiir Soprano und Tenor 1. "Tanzlied" 1849 J. IV/lO.iii 114. Drei Lieder fiir drei Frauenstimme 3. "Spruch"' 1853 ? 91. Romanzen Vol.11 (Partsongs - Women) 6. "In Meeres Mitten" 1849 ? 62. Drei Gesdnge (Partsongs - Men) 1847 2. "Freiheitslied" y. V/38.iii 133 65. Ritornelle in canonischen Wei sen 1847 1. "Die Rose stand im Tau" 2. "LaBt Lautenspiel und Becherklang" 3. "Bluf oder Schnee" 4. "Gebt mir zu trinken!" 5. "Zurne nicht des Herbstes Wind" 6. "In Meeres Mitten" ? ? ? ? ? ? 93. Motet (double chorus) "Verzweifle nicht in Schmerzenstal" 1849 ? 59. Vier Gesdnge (mixed voices) 4. "Die gute Nacht" 1849 Z. 1/23.i 141. Vier doppelchdrige Gesdnge 1. "An die Sterne" 1849 7. I/19.iii 146. Romanzen undBalladen Vol. IV. 4. "Sommerlied" 1849-51 iv, p.311 * L = Ruckert's Liebesfriihling, J = Ruckert's Jugend/ieder Upper case Roman= StrauB number in Liebesfriihling or Jugendlieder Arabic numerals= position of poem in StrauB ? = not found in 1837-1840 Erlangen edition. Lower case Roman=volume number of Erlangen edition. Key also applies to Tables 3.2 and 3.3. 134 2.2 Clara Schumann's Ruckert settings. Opus Title Date Location 12. 2. "Er is gekommen" 4. Liebst du um Schonheit" 11. "Warum willst du Andre fragen" 1841 L.V3S.X I.IV/47.i Z.IV/46.i 13. Sechs Lieder 5. "Ich hab' in deinem Auge" 1843 L. V/60.i Post. "Die gute Nacht" 1841 ( p u b . 1990) L. 1/23 .i Post. "Oh weh des Scheidens, das er tat" 1843 ( p u b . 1990) L. III/23.i 2.3 Gustav Mahler's Ruckert settings -Fiinf Lieder nach Ruckert only. Title Accomp. Date Loc. 1. "Liebst du um Schonheit" Piano 1901-2 Z.IV/47.i 2. "Ich atmet einen linden Duft" Orchestra J. IV/36.V 3. "Blicke mir nicht in der Lieder" Orchestra J. V/23.V 4. "Um Mitternacht" Orchestra J. V/26.V 5. "Ich bin der Welt abhanden gekommen" Orchestra L. III/3.i 135 Table 3. Survey of rhythmical characteristics of Riickert's Liebesfriihling poems and the Schumann settings. [R.S. - Robert Schumann, C S . = Clara Schumann] Ruckert R.S. R.S. C S . C S . C S . Poems Op.37 Other Op.12 Other Unset Meter iambic 153 5 1 1 1 1 trochaic 193 3 2 1 mixed 49 1 1 1 Feet/Line 2 4 1 3 46 2 1 4 146 2 2 1 5 43 more 18 alternate 138 5 1 1 2 # Lines in stanza 2 2 3 8 1 4 259 5 2 2 1 5 8 6 21 1 7 7 8 29 1 1 1 9 J 1 10 9 2 more 49 136 Riickert's R.S. R.S. C S . C S . C S . Poems Op. 37 Other Op.12 Other Unset # Stanzas 1 118 1 1 1 2 69 -> 1 1 3 63 1 1 2 4 38 1 1 5 26 6 28 1 7 19 1 8 10 9 9 10 5 2 more 10 Line Endings w/s* 161 7 1 1 1 strong 61 1 1 1 s/w** 75 1 weak 87 1 other 11 1 2 Rhyme Schemes abab 261 5 2 2 2 abcb 4 1 aabb 46 2 abba other 81 1 1 1 * w/s = alternating weak/strong (feminine/masculine) endings ** s/w = alternating strong/weak (masculine/feminine) endings 137 

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