New Albumleaves, Op49
Kirchner, a volatile seeker after truth, became, as a composer, a master of transient visions. His importance lies in his piano music. His work com-prises about a thousand individual pieces. Schumann, his revered and adored friend, proved initially to be an overpowering idol, and Kirchner gave his works titles like ‘Neue Davidsbündlertänze’, ‘Neue Kinderscener’. Subsequently other highly idiosyncratic titles reveal more about the special characteristics of his own style. ‘Federzeichnungen’ (Pen and Ink Sketches) and ‘Im Zwielicht’ (In the Gloaming) point to a life between two worlds and show a fragility which gives Kirchner’s works their own particular charm. The two volumes of the ‘Neue Albumblätter’ (New Albumleaves) are witness to this fragile world. These transient sketches move in the lower dynamic range. Modulations, shifting chords and enharmonic changes lead the listener astray; formal expectations are disappointed. Our edition is based on the original two volumes published by Augener in 1880 and reissued by Schott in 1911 under a new title.