Four Last Songs by Richard Strauss

Summary

'''''Four Last Songs''''' (), Op. posth., TrV 296, AV 150,Four Last Songs (1950) is listed as AV 150 in Mueller von Asow, Erich Hermann, ''Richard Strauss: Thematisches Verzeichnis''. 3 vols. (Vienna: L. Doblinger, 1950-1974); as TrV 196 in Trenner, Franz, and Trenner, Florian, ''Richard-Strauss-Werkverzeichnis'' (Vienna: 2nd rev. ed.-Richard Strauss Verlag, Vienna, 1999); there is no opus number and it is considered posthumous as the work was published in 1950 after Strauss's death, q.v. Schuh, Willi, and Loewenthal, Max. "Richard Strauss's 'Four Last Songs'", ''Tempo'' New Series, No. 15 (Spring, 1950), 25-27, 29-30. for soprano and orchestra are, with the exception of the song "Malven" (Mallows) composed later the same year,http://www.jstor.org/discover/10.2307/945709?sid=21105208831701&uid=4&uid=3739632&uid=3739256&uid=2 the final completed works of Richard Strauss, composed in 1948 when the composer was 84. The songs are '''"Frühling"''' (Spring), '''"September"''', '''"Beim Schlafengehen"''' (When Falling Asleep) and '''"Im Abendrot"''' (At Sunset). The title "Four Last Songs" was provided posthumously by Strauss's friend Ernst Roth, who published the four songs as a single unit after Strauss's death.

Strauss died in September 1949. The premiere was given posthumously at the Royal Albert Hall in London on 22 May 1950 by soprano Kirsten Flagstad and the Philharmonia Orchestra, conducted by Wilhelm Furtwängler.

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