Schöne Fremde: It’s Fanny Mendelssohn’s Turn

In 1847, seven years after Robert Schumann set “Schöne Fremde” into a Lied (see two previous postings), the composer Fanny Mendelssohn-Hensel wrote choir music to the same text. Fanny Mendelssohn-Hensel was as composer as prolific as her brother Felix Mendelssohn. However, her father forbate her to write music as a profession which did not stop her to create more than 450 pieces of music, including songs, cantatas, chamber and piano music, works for orchestra, and for choir. She managed to publish some of them under the name of her brother.
I found the following recording on youtube, performed by the Free State High School Chamber Choir at the Guadelupe Cathedral in Dallas, Texas.
Below, you will also find the poem by Joseph Freiherr von Eichendorff.

Schöne Fremde

Es rauschen die Wipfel und schauern,
Als machten zu dieser Stund
Um die halbversunkenen Mauern
Die alten Götter die Rund.

Hier hinter den Myrtenbäumen
In heimlich dämmernder Pracht,
Was sprichst du wirr wie in Träumen
Zu mir, phantastische Nacht?

Es funkeln auf mich alle Sterne
Mit glühendem Liebesblick,
Es redet trunken die Ferne
Wie von künftigem, großem Glück.

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Bernd Hendricks. Born in Duisburg, Germany. Based in Berlin. Writer, German Language Educator. I was six years old when I went to the opera for the first time. My Grandma took me to Hänsel und Gretel at the Deutsche Oper am Rhein in Duisburg. The first time I met an opera singer personally was during my time as foreign correspondent in New York when at a Christmas party a baritone pelted me with questions about the language of Zauberflöte. He was preparing for his role as Papageno. After my return to Berlin in September 2010, I have been giving German lessons to singers on their audition tours. My workshops in Berlin, Vienna, and London are based on my widely read book Ach, ich fühl’s—German for Opera Singers in Three Acts: Studying, Speaking, Singing. My latest book, Die Frist ist um—Navigate the Language of 10 German Operas, takes you on a journey through the language of the most popular and often performed operas in the German-speaking countries. I am also the author of several non-fiction books and two novels.

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