Franz Schubert (1797–1828) Gesang der Geister ueber den Wassern D 714 [Op. post. 167]
“Des Menschen Seele” [2male ch,str] Text: Johann W. von Goethe
choir: TTTTBBBB – str(without vl)
This work is based on a poem by Goethe, written on his second trip to Switzerland.
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Inspired by the 300-meter-high Staubbach Falls in Lauterbrunnen Valley, Goethe is here describing the human soul and its transience using the water image. Schubert repeatedly revised his musical setting; so, from an original piano lied arose a piece for male quartet – initially a cappella, then with piano –, and finally today’s best-known version for male octet, with low strings.