Graham Johnson's puns
This is somewhat off-topic for a website focusing on streaming music because what follows a list of quotes from Graham Johnson's marvellous booklets accompanying the Hyperion Schubert Edition. I'd often chuckled while reading his notes but it was only half-way through volume 36 that I started writing down his bons mots.
I’m intrigued now to listen to that unmotifated tierce de picardie (and the inspiration for other puns).
And agreed that Hyperion is generous for releasing their booklets online. If only they’d release their recordings for streaming too.
unmotifated tierce de picardie
This was in the comments on Der Doppelgänger, in which the minor key cantus firmus (passacaglia) "motif" repeats more or less consistently throughout the song until the last few bars which culminate in a major chord. At the end of this tormented song (the last of the Heine sequence) this can seem enigmatic. Hence the reference to the "apparently unmotifated tierce de Picardie". Johnson notes that the passacaglia motif is essentially a self-quotation by Schubert being almost identical to the theme of the fugal passage in the Agnus Dei of his E flat Mass where the final "pacem" is set to a variant of the same theme. Hence, the postlude "could well signify a wordless ‘Dona nobis pacem’ which would explain why the matchlessly moving major-key ending of Der Doppelgänger seems to be is the only true moment of resolution and release in the entire group of six songs. ... the switch into C major for the fourth bar is one of those Schubertian harmonies which we might imagine has the power to stop planets in their courses."
Schubert: The Hyperion Schubert Edition, Vol. 37 - John Mark Ainsley, Anthony Rolfe Johnson & Michael Schade - CDJ33037 - Franz Schubert (1797-1828) - Hyperion Records - MP3 and Lossless downloads (hyperion-records.co.uk)