Winternächte, Serenade No. 2
Hans Huber – Serenade No. 2, WoO
(b. Eppenburg near Solothurn, 28 June 1852 — d. Locarno, 25 December 1921)
Winter Nights (1895)
I Pastorale p.1
II Träumerei p.39
III Spinnlied p.52
IV Legende p.74
V Carneval p.94
Hans Huber’s Serenade No. 2, WoO, Winter Nights (1895) for orchestra stands out as the last of four serenades in his output, and has a pendant in the orchestral Serenade Op. 86, Summer Nights (1886). The two earlier serenades, Op. 19 (1876) and Op. 55 (1879), are not for orchestra, but for piano solo and four hands, respectively, allowing us to trace Huber’s path to this orchestral genre via his background as a professional pianist.
Huber was never quite captured by the mainstream eye in the same way that Brahms was, and those many 19th-century serenade composers referencing Brahms or attracted to the “Brahms fog”, including darunter Robert Volkmann (1815–1883), Dvořák,1 and others. And yet, one scholar has described him as “perhaps […] the most important Swiss composer of the 19th century.”2 Who was Hans Huber?
Born June 28th, 1852, Huber’s life began in Eppenberg-Wöschnau (canton of Solothurn, Switzerland). His parents were not musicians, but fostered his love for music in his early years when he was a chorister and studied piano. At the Leipzig Conservatory he studied for a number of years – according to one scholar he remained “uninfluenced” by the conservative trend of this institution – before returning to Switzerland for a teaching post as piano teacher at a music school (“Musikschule”) in Basel whose director he became in 1896.3
Huber was most well known for the “Tell” Symphony No. 1 (1880), his choral cantata Pandora for mixed choir, soprano solo, and orchestra (1883), as well as for his operas Weltfrühling (1894) (libretto by Rudolf Wackernagel), Kudrun (1896)(opera in 3 acts, libretto by Stephan Born), Der Simplicius (1899) (libretto by Albrecht Mendelssohn Bartholdy), Frutta di mare (1913) (libretto by Fritz Karmin), Der gläserne Berg (unfinished, 1915) (libretto by Gian Bundi), and Die schöne Belinda (1916) (libretto by Gian Bundi). …
Full preface / Komplettes Vorwort > HERE