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A New Deeply Emotional Wintereisse from TRPTK

02-05-2022 | By Rushton Paul | Issue 119

There are few more beloved classical songs than Schubert's Wintereisse. It is a true joy to hear a new performance that brings such a direct, unaffected, but deeply emotional performance as this new contribution by baritone Michael Wilmering and pianist Daan Boertien. In superb sonics from TRPTK as yet a further gift.

Schubert Wintereisse, Michael Wilmering, baritone, and Daan Boertien, piano. TRPTK 2022 [DXD] HERE

Of all the classical song cycles, Schubert’s Winterreise is perhaps the most beloved. Baritone Michael Wilmering and pianist Daan Boertien give a new, refreshingly direct and unaffected interpretation of this timeless music in what is nonetheless a deeply emotional performance.

Wilmering's very clear, transparent and highly flexible baritone voice is a delight to hear. He can be delicate, yearning, quietly pleading, then transition to huge power and impact.

Boertien's accompaniment is alert and most complementary. His contribution is that of an equal partner, never taking the spotlight but always providing an important interpretive partnership sympathetically in tune with his singer.

There is undoubtedly appeal to alternative accompaniment for this work, such as the eminently rewarding string quartet accompaniment provided by the Ragazze Quartet to Martijn Cornet HERE. Another superb musical partnership.

Nonetheless, there is something very comfortable about returning to the traditional piano accompaniment here, as with the seminal performances of Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau and Gerald Moore so many decades ago.

Paint me as a listener who feels privileged to hear them all.

I won't attempt to dissect the qualities of Wilmering's and Boertien's performance. I'm just a listener, not a musician and certain not a music critic. For this, you will have to seek other reviews as they become available.

What I can say, most decidedly, is that I was moved by this performance. It is truly superb.

I hope to hear more recordings from Michael Wilmering. It will be most interesting to follow him as he progresses in his career. I suspect he has much more to offer us in coming years.

Brendon Heinst, TRPTK's founder and chief engineer, graces us with another of his exceptional recordings. Working once again in the beautiful acoustics of Westvest Church, Schiedam, Netherlands, Brendon captures the acoustic space marvelously while providing exceptionally clear reproduction of both voice and piano. If you've yet not experienced any of his recordings for TRPTK, you owe it to yourself to do so. They are uniformly exceptional technical tours de force. For more about TRPTK and Brendon Heinst, see the article by Wojciech Pacuła HERE or my survey of several earlier recordings HERE.

Highly recommended.

Photos courtesy of Brendon Heinst and TRPTK