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Love and Suffering in Gothic Music

In a time when marriages – at least in the higher social classes – were arranged primarily for dynastic, political and financial reasons, marriages for love were probably a rarity that was at best mildly ridiculed. Love – that was something romantic, idealistic, which had nothing to do with the real world.

Not surprisingly, the numerous “love songs” that have been handed down from the Middle Ages mostly have a tragic content. Although we can still suffer for love today – there is often still hope. But even this hope usually did not exist in the Middle Ages – and so all the pain, the great suffering of an unfulfilled, even unfulfillable love is revealed in lyric poetry of incomparable beauty. Longing, the poets and composers describe their love for a distant lady – so distant that she is unattainable anyway. In bitter verse, they describe their torment and anguish, the only way out of which is one thing: death.

Katharina Hölzel Recorders, Shawm, Gothic Harp
Kathrin Kläber Vocals, Carillon
Viola Baither  Vocals, Portative
Robert Schuchardt Hurdy-Gurdy, Gittern
Martin Uhlig Lute, Fiddle

as guest musician
Silvia Needon Percussion