MU School of Music faculty members Steven Tharp and Janice Wenger are pleased to announce the upcoming release of their new compact disc, Franz Schubert’s Winterreise, on the Centaur Label. The production was supported by a University of Missouri Research Council Grant, as well as funding from the School of Music Faculty Activities Committee. The recording features the MU fortepiano, a historic reproduction 5½-octave instrument built in the Czech Republic by Paul McNulty in 2006, based precisely on a Viennese fortepiano by Anton Walter from about 1802. The instrument is the type that Mozart, Haydn, Beethoven, Schubert and their contemporaries would have known and used in their own lifetimes.
Following live performances in Missouri, Illinois, Kansas, Georgia, and Florida, the recording was begun in Fall 2019 in the Centralia (Missouri) United Methodist Church sanctuary, an acoustically resonant but intimate space for this repertoire. Engineered by Rob Boullion and his team from Lindervox Sound in Columbia, the cycle of 24 lieder was mastered over three evening sessions, with the able assistance of the School of Music’s Piano Tuner/Technician Lucy Urlacher.
Professor Tharp remarked, “Recording this cycle is certainly one of the pinnacles in any singer’s career, and finding ideal colleagues made this project a joy from the first take to the final edit.” Dr. Wenger said “I was concerned that the delicate and transparent sounds of the historic instrument would be difficult to capture, especially in a duo with the more highly resonant voice. But Rob and his staff were truly sensitive to the nuances of both and I am thrilled with the results of this great song cycle.”
The CD will be available later this spring both as CD from Centaur (https://www.arkivmusic.com/) and as a digital download from multiple online retailers.
Tharp, Urlacher, and Wenger celebrating the completion of recording sessions in 2019.