Kaminski, Heinrich


Kaminski, Heinrich

Drei Gedichte von Eichendorff for 6-part male choir, plucked instruments, brass & percussion

SKU: 4028 Category:



Heinrich Kaminski
(b. Tiengen, 4 July 1886 — d. Ried near Benediktbeuern, 21 June 1946)

Drei Gedichte von Eichendorff
(Three Poems by Eichendorff)
for 6-part male choir, plucked instruments, brass & percussion (1924)

I Morgenständchen (Morning Serenade; accompanied by 2 mandolins and 3 lutes or guitars). Quiet (p. 3) –
Gradually moving forward (p. 7) – Tempo di marcia (p. 11) – Quiet crotchets (p. 15)
II Abend (Evening; a cappella). Adagio (p. 21)
III Der Soldat (The Soldier; accompanied by 2 trumpets, 2 French horns & percussion [3 players]). In solemnly sustained march rhythm (p. 25) – Tempo di marcia (p. 28) – Più mosso (p. 32)

In the turbulent years of transition from the post-romantic tonal tradition to so-called modernism, Heinrich Kaminski was one of the few composers who managed to maintain continuity despite the change of paradigms, and to fashion a distinctive, wholly unmistakable and timeless style that neither echoes nor denies nor obstructs the past. His artistic motto was “Evolution, not Revolution,” and his clear intention was to transport the supreme achievements of German counterpoint, from Johann Sebastian Bach and late Beethoven to the symphonic grandeur of Anton Bruckner, into new realms of expression and intercultural cohesion. In this he succeeded convincingly and with flawless craftsmanship. He also succeeded in conveying essential aspects of his artistic bearing and ethos to his most gifted and earnest pupils, particularly Reinhard Schwarz-Schilling (1904-1985) and Heinz Schubert (1908-1945). From the mid-1920s to the early 1930s he was considered a central voice in contemporary music, a figure standing above reaction and avant-garde alike. Yet his art was condemned to insignificance by the Third Reich. This is hardly surprising for a man who saw in Bismarck the “primary source of the dogged, headstrong, and unfortunately all-too successful resistance to the honest and admirably perspicacious efforts of Crown Prince Friedrich III (in conjunction with his spouse and his sister, the Grand Duchess, and his brother-in-law, the Grand Duke of Baden) to create a genuine federation of German lands (without Prussian hegemony!), so that beginning in 1871 the Prussianization of Germany was able to proceed ever more viciously along its path to this catastrophic end.” Though Kaminski’s music escaped being blacklisted, it was considered undesirable and no longer performed, with few exceptions (especially Heinz Schubert in Flensburg and Rostock). With the cessation of hostilities his day might well have come, but he only had one more year to live, and it is highly unlikely that the crypto-fascist spirit of total serialism, that bane of modern music, would have granted him a sufficiently large niche in which to operate. As his music is also extremely complex and very difficult to perform, there has yet to be a Kaminski renaissance, although some leading musicians, such as Lavard Skou Larsen in Neuss, have taken up his cause with passion and expertise. His major creations belong to the genres of sacred music (with orientalizing tinges), orchestral music, and chamber music. Nor should we forget his two basically untheatrical stage works, Jürg Jenatsch and Das Spiel vom König Aphelius, whose mystic ambience brooks comparison with Wagner’s Parsifal, Enescu’s Œdipe, and Szymanowski’s Krol Roger. Kaminski’s work gave rise to a mighty and multi-layered current violently cut short by the vicissitudes of German history. Perhaps it is possible today to draw on that current and to rise above the contradictions of history. …


Read full preface > HERE

Score Data


Repertoire Explorer


Choir/Voice & Instrument(s)


210 x 297 mm





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