Beethoven & Schubert (Mark Padmore and Paul Lewis, Town Hall Birmingham)
The programme was linked, Mark Padmore explained at the start, by sensucht: longing. This was reasonably coherent. The first half was Beethoven. Regrettably,
Adelaide, a perfect gem of Beethoven's songs was missing from the programme (despite having been advertised). I wasn't too sure why: the programme was hardly excessively long. It didn't appear as an encore as I hoped. An impressive Geliebte finished with a crescendo, and I wasn't sure to what end. After the interval, it turned to Schubert's Swan-song, which offered substantial fayre and gathered some real momentum.
In terms of technique, it would be very easy to start by saying that everyone is in Gerhaher's shadow (they probably are: I heard much of the Beethoven last year at the Wigmore). And certainly for precision, native-speakers are the way to go. But Padmore offered something important here, and this made for an afternoon of beautiful singing.
Beethoven: Mailied Op52/4
Neue Liebe, neues Leben Op75/2
Abendlied unterm gestirnten Himmel, WoO150
An die ferne Geliebte Op98
Schubert Schwanengesang D957