At last, the ultimate Winterreise

At last, the ultimate Winterreise


norman lebrecht

March 03, 2019

This new website reveals all you could ever wish to know about Schubert’s epic cycle.

As an integral element of ongoing research into interpretations of arguably the greatest song-cycle ever written, this site d’hommage to Schubert’s Winterreise presents and will maintain a comprehensive and accurate overview of commercially available recordings with timings and relevant data, films, books, online videos, articles, translations, artworks and links to scholastic sources and other websites.

In addition, an up-to-date listing of upcoming performances of Winterreise around the globe is available: please feel free to comment and/or contribute with tips and dates!



  • ThrownOutOfTheKremlinForSinging says:

    Holy Jamolie! (As Luitenant Colombo would say.)

    One of the recordings shown here is sung by a baritone named Benjamin DeLoache. I took voice lessons from him in the early 1980s when I was a student at Yale. He was very old, his heart was failing, and he took nitroglycerin pills during lessons for it. And he talked about the attitude he considered necessary for good singing: you must get yourself to feel like a little child.

    He gave a coaching session to the choir I sang with–the Yale Russian Chorus. (Yes, that is the group I was singing with when we were ThrownOutOfTheKremlinForSinging.) He started it by calling for a volunteer, and he specified that the volunteer must be an uninhibited person. One guy stepped forward. Ben asked him to cackle like a chicken. Then he spent twenty minutes coaching him on how to cackle more shrilly and proudly, to let go of the sound. When he was done, he turned to the choir and said: “that is what you do in order to sing well.”

    • Bruce says:

      I am so glad to finally read a comment from you that is not insufferable. Also, thanks for explaining your username.

      As one of my teachers remarks now and then: we all stand on the shoulders of giants. (In other words, we shouldn’t think we got this tall all by ourselves.)

      • ThrownOutOfTheKremlinForSinging says:

        Stand on the shoulders of giants. Well, I once sang in a chorus doing IVAN SUSANIN (aka A LIFE FOR THE TSAR) behind Martti Talvela. He was very nice, but I didn’t get to stand on his shoulders.

  • ThrownOutOfTheKremlinForSinging says:

    My favorite recorded singers of WINTERREISE — there are two, tied for first place– are Peter Anders and Kurt Moll.

  • Göran Andersson says:

    One of the best I watched last night on Swedish television and that was Peter Mattei. I highly recommend it.

    • Robert von Bahr says:

      And a different recording with the same artists will be released on Oct 10 as BIS-2444 SACD

  • Alan says:

    This looks like an excellent resource.
    Well done the creator.

  • Caravaggio says:

    Hans Hotter’s wartime Winterreise practically obliterates all other Winterreises. Gerhard Hüsch comes in a close second.

  • My favo’s: Herrmann Prey, Thomas Allen, Francesco Araiza, Michael Volle, Brigitte Fassbaender, Florian Boesch, Richard Tauber (not complete), Hermann Schey…

  • Harrumph says:

    Peter Schreier!

    • HugoPreuß says:

      Yesssss!!! And Svjatoslav Richter at the piano.

      Truth be told, there are several great recordings. One life-long standard is set by the many recordings Fischer-Dieskau made. From one Schreier fan to the other: compare how different he and Fi-Di take “Die Krähe” – slow and accepting Fischer-Dieskau, much faster and almost defiant Schreier. One of my favorite examples of how two great artists can interprete the same piece entirely differently.

      • Harrumph says:

        I only wish Schreier had recorded more Schubert earlier in his career, around the time he made his wonderful Schumann recordings with Norman Shetler.