Frülingsgesang [Song of Spring] for two Violins, Piano and Harmonium ad lib. [WoO]. [Score and parts]. Autograph working musical manuscript signed, dated April 3, 1920 at conclusion. Max BRUCH.
Frülingsgesang [Song of Spring] for two Violins, Piano and Harmonium ad lib. [WoO]. [Score and parts]. Autograph working musical manuscript signed, dated April 3, 1920 at conclusion.
Frülingsgesang [Song of Spring] for two Violins, Piano and Harmonium ad lib. [WoO]. [Score and parts]. Autograph working musical manuscript signed, dated April 3, 1920 at conclusion.

Frülingsgesang [Song of Spring] for two Violins, Piano and Harmonium ad lib. [WoO]. [Score and parts]. Autograph working musical manuscript signed, dated April 3, 1920 at conclusion.

Folio. Unbound. Notated in ink on printed 12-stave music paper, ca. 300 x 250 mm.

Autograph titling and inscription to recto of outer bifolium.
Score: Title + 16 pp.
Violin I: Title + 4 pp.
Violin II: Title + 5 pp.
Harmonium: Title + 7 pp.

With some corrections, additions, and cancellations within score. Overpaste amendations to lower half of one leaf within score, comprising a 3-measure passage for all instruments. Some corrections to harmonium part including notational overpaste replacing final page.

With performance markings, fingerings, etc., in lead and blue pencil to parts.

Inscribed to Frau Hollmann, wife of the distinguished physician Dr. Otto Hollman (1866-1940) of Berlin, by Bruch in 1920 on the occasion of her birthday: "Dem lieben Frühlingskinde, Frau Sanitätsrat Dr. Hollmann, zum Geburtstag 1920 Freundschaftlichst Max Bruch" ("To the child of Spring, the wife of [the distinguished physician] Dr. Hollmann, on her birthday 1920 Most amicably, Max Bruch" ).

Slightly trimmed at upper and lower margins just affecting manuscript dynamics to several pages but with no loss of notation; lower edges of several leaves with burn marks; occasional minor dampstaining; occasional tears. In quite good condition overall.

One of Bruch's last compositions, Frülingsgesang was written for the American journalist Arthur Abell, Berlin correspondent of The Musical Courier and a champion of Bruch's violin works in America. It is based on part of Bruch's oratorio "Gustav Adolf," op. 73 (1897-98). Fifield: Max Bruch His Life and Works, pp. 321 and 339.

Not in the Grove or MGG works list.

"The E major violin duet was written in the early months of 1920, but was published posthumously in 1922 by Carl Fischer of New York under the spurious title of Song of Spring (the title was probably Abell's). The work was based on a passage in Gustav Adolf which was a particular favourite of the composer... The Song of Spring is... in ternary form, but the middle section of the later work is new material not to be found in Gustav Adolf. The piece is inconsequential, with a simplicity of harmony, somewhat crude modulation using the diminished sevenh to and from the middle section, and an accompaniment based on the left hand of the piano part of the vocal score of Gustav Adolf for the outer sections. An unimaginative middle section is dominated by parallel thirds mirrored in both hands. There are also attempts at orchestral tremolandi more suited to the piano score of the original vocal version. Interest in Song of Spring is centred entirely on its melodic invention. Bruch himself admitted to a lack of inspiration 'in my old age' in finding new material, when he wrote to Simrock's asking permission to quote from Gustav Adolf..." Fifield p. 321.

"J.A. Fuller Maitland was an admirer of Bruch, and sought to compare him with Brahms to ascertain their relative positions in music. His conclusion (which he described in his Masters of German Music) was to place him midway between Brahms and other German contemporary composers. The best of Bruch's works were in Maitland's opinion: ... distinguished by great and easily intelligible beauty, and by the rare quality of distinction... Both the music and the man belong to the Lower Rhine country... The broadly flowing melodies of his invention suggest the course of such a river as that of his native country... He is one of those who uphold most worthily the dignity of the art, and if he has not attained to the position of one whose every publication is received by musicians with a reverence due to a new revelation, he has won the hearts of many thousands of hearers by his beautiful creations in certain branches of music - viz., choral works of large design with orchestral accompaniment, and works for violin or violoncello." op. cit. p. 327.

One of the last German Romantic composers, "Max Bruch's precocious gifts remained largely unfulfilled for two reasons. He was an exact contemporary of Brahms and was forced to exist in the shadow of his greater colleague even beyond the latter's death over 20 years before his own, and the stubborn resistance he maintained to musical developments largely instigated by Wagner stifled any of his own originality. Nevertheless his name will endure, if only thanks to one superb violin concerto." Christopher Fifield in Grove Music Online.

Autograph manuscripts of complete works by Bruch are rare to the market. Item #28376

Price: $6,500.00  other currencies

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