Robert Schumann (1810–1856) Hermann und Dorothea Op. 136
Overture to Goethe's “Hermann und Dorothea” – Urtext edited by Christian Rudolf Riedel [orch] Duration: 10'
picc.18.104.22.168. – 22.214.171.124. – small dr – str
Urtext of the Revolutionary
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The Overture to Hermann and Dorothea is the only compositional result that Schumann reaped from Goethes epic poem. He had originally planned an entire opera, then a Singspiel, and finally an oratorio. In the end (1851), he quickly produced an orchestral score that remained unprinted during his lifetime. The striking thematic use of the Marseillaise is multiply motivated: Goethes poem unfolds in 1796, when the two eponymous lovers are fleeing from the French revolutionary troops; Schumann had directly experienced the revolutionary uprisings of 1848 in Dresden; finally, Louis Napoléons coup détat of 2 December 1851 must also have made an impact on the composer. The primary source of the Urtext edition of Schumanns Revolutionary Overture is the carefully written autograph.