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Schicksalslied (Song of Destiny) by Johannes Brahms:
From Musical Musings:
The year was 1868, but Brahms did not finish the piece until 1871. Brahms could not make up his mind concerning how to end the work. The final stanza of the poem appealed to Brahms' morose nature, but he hesitated to end the work in such a dark mood. After much thought (and some advice from conductor Hermann Levi) Brahms settled on a return of the orchestral prelude that began the work.More information HERE.
Schicksalslied is in three short movements. The first movement begins with an orchestra prelude and the chorus comes in with the first two stanzas of the poem in E-flat major. The second movement is in C minor and reflects the gloominess of the third stanza. The last movement is a repeat of the the orchestral prelude that opened the work, but Brahms transposed the key to C major and made changes in the instrumentation.
Schicksalslied (Song Of Destiny)
You walk above in the light
on holy ground, blessed genies!
waft by you,
like the fingers of the player
on the holy strings.
Fateless, like sleeping infants,
breathe the heavenly beings.
With modest buds
their spirit will bloom forever,
and their blessed eyes
will see in silent,
But we are given
no place to rest.
We vanish and fall,
Blind from hour to hour,
thrown from tragedy to tragedy
like water thrown from cliff to cliff,
we disappear into the abyss.