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Mayr Liszt Hiller

Title Johann Simon Mayr's cantata

Johann Simon Mayr (1763-1845) was a Bavarian composer, but quickly established himself in Italy. His main successes were his operas. In 1827, hearing of Beethoven's death, he composed, and had played, this cantata.

It would seem that it hasn't been played since...

Johann Simon Mayr...

Cantata per la morte di Beethoven

Giovanni Simone MAYR


Weep, weep, harmony,
weeping souls hear
the mournful lament;
your beloved is gone:
Beethoven is no more.

Recitative for Bass

You disciples of the lonian virgins, with a pure heart
compose a sad harmony
to lament him.
That swan, the lover of Euterpe,
fell prey to the stygian arrow;
an envious tomb already devours
his fragile remains;
and with solemn example of the proud Danube
the wave sounds great mourning,
echoing his praises.

Trio for Soprano, Tenor, and Bass

Divine poet, your profound genius
wrote notes that astonished the world.
Because of your hymns, now a worthier place and theme
you shall have at the zenith of the firmament.
The Thracian poet, with his sweet incantation
at the first age conquered the cruel King of Averno.
Now the blessed ones of eternal Olympus
will interrupt their song to listen to you.

Recitative for tenor

But even if the excellent spirit returned to heaven,
the light which emanated from him
is not extinguished down here.
The returning notes, with which he so magnificently
glorified Cantabria and Britain,
whose liberty in the camps of Victoria
surrounded lost arms and envied laurels, disdain the shame of death.

Recitative for soprano

Again sounds on the ear, speaks to the ravished senses,
the sweet chords of the soft melodies,
in which he painted the peace and innocence
of the hills and the forests.

Recitative for Bass

And in the solemn harmonies,
from which he fashioned the chorus
to the holy sacrifice
that the grateful people of Christ adore,
you hear all the arcane majesty
of the purest religion.
And the following generations will
follow in the proud footsteps of [his] immortal genius
to these founts of celestial harmony.
They spur the generous heart of Pimplea's disciples
and illuminate the arduous path with their shining lights.

Final Chorus

In majestic canticles
let the sound of the divine cithara
be lifted up to heaven;
recall its power!
And upon the eternal vortices
of those harmonious threads
learn to enjoy
the unequaled sound.
To the giver of beautiful delights
we offer a grateful heart;
And he shall live in our hearts
And be forever immortal.
ln majestic canticles
let the sound be lifted up to heaven.

English translation of the cantata by Lawrence SISK.
Title Simon Mayr's cantata for Ludwig van Beethoven

Conducted by: Franz Hauk
Ingolstadt Georgian Chamber Orchestra
Simon Mayr Choir
Naxos - 2006


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Many thanks to Hannah SALTER for her translation of this page from French into English
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