“Liedkunst” – „The Art of the Lied“ 2021 in the Castle of Husum

20th Masterclass for Lied Interpretation with Charles Spencer and Ulf Bästlein.

It’s time to celebrate! In 2021, “The Art of the Lied” in the Castle of Husum will take place for the 20th time!

After the festival unfortunately had to be cancelled in 2020 due to the Corona pandemic, young singers and pianists from Europe, the Americas and Asia will be dedicating their talents to the contextual and tonal interpretation of the Art Song in Master Classes and concerts from July 26 – July 31st. A very special anniversary opening concert has been planned on Monday, July 26th at 7:30 p.m. in the Knights’ Hall of the Castle of Husum. Ulf Bästlein, Charles Spencer and the Prizewinners of the last master class will be performing together. Particularly for this occasion, parts of a Lied Cycle from Hans Christian Détlefsen, a composer born in North Frisia and living in Amsterdam, will be debuted for the first time with the title “From Other Times.” Once again, “The Art of the Lied” Master Class demonstrates impulses for the constant development of today’s culture in Schleswig-Holstein.

“The Art of the Lied” festival was expanded over the years from the original Master Class. The course work is as always open to the public and has continually received an enthusiastic response from an ever-growing audience. Participants are made up of students at colleges of Music and professionals in the middle of their careers. The high standards of the master class, which is organized in close cooperation with the North Frisian Foundation, as well as the County Music School of North Frisia, ensures a careful selection of highly qualified participants, as previous festivals have demonstrated.

Round of prizes: The Johann-Max-Böttcher Art Song Prize will be awarded for the first time!

We are deeply thankful and glad that the highly endowed Johann-Max-Böttcher Art Song Prize will be awarded for the first time in 2021, on the occasion of the festival’s 20th anniversary (Lied- Duo Prize), sponsored by the Böttcher Endowment.

The Ministry of Education, Science and Culture in the state of Schleswig-Holstein is awarding the “North Frisian Lied Prize” (also a Lied-Duo prize) for the 20th time. The St. Mary Church of Husum Prize will be awarded for the 16th time and the Nicolaus-Bruhns-Preis for the best Lied Singer (endowed by Dr. Annemarie Hansen) will be awarded for the 10th time. An audience award will be given for the 8th time as well. This award is endowed by Gabrielle Gumpert and Barbara Hess. A participant who delivers an outstanding interpretative performance will receive the Hardenack-Zinck Prize, which will be awarded for the third time this year. This prize is named after the renowned composer, flute player and singer, Hardenack Otto Conrad Zinck, who was born in 1746 in Husum.

The prize winners will be chosen by a jury at the final concert on Saturday, July 31 at 6:00 p.m. The organizers are delighted to announce that well-known artists, agents, conductors, critics and representatives of public life have decided to come to Husum in order to help determine who they feel are the best singers and pianists among the participants. For the first time we are deeply honored and grateful to welcome Roberta Alexander, one of the most significant sopranos of our time, as one of the members of the jury. The American soprano enjoys international recognition for her work and regularly appears on the most important international opera stages such as the Metropolitan Opera in New York, the Royal Opera House at Covent Garden, as well as in Berlin, Hamburg, Vienna, Zurich, Amsterdam and Venice. She has sung a concert version of Jenuůfa with the Philadelphia Orchestra under Sir Simon Rattle, both in Philadelphia and New York City. She also regularly appears in Lied recitals which prove her extraordinary love for this most intimate of vocal music genres. For this reason, she has been invited to sing various recital series in Carnegie Hall, New York, the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, the Vienna Music Organization, Wigmore Hall in London, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam and the Vocal Arts Society in Washington D.C.

The concept of a master class with prizes awarded has proved to be successful and is held in high regard. Many former prize winners have been able to establish themselves internationally which has in turn increased the profile of the Husum Art of the Lied.

Accolades for the Founders of The Art of the Lied

The directors and founders of this annual event are the internationally renowned singer Ulf Bästlein and pianist Charles Spencer, one of the leading Lied accompanists of our time. Charles Spencer is a Professor of Lied Interpretation of the University of Music in Vienna and counts Jessye Norman, Christa Ludwig, Thomas Quasthoff, Thomas Hampson, Vesselina Kasarove and Elina Garanҫa as his musical partners. The bass-baritone Ulf Bästlein, who grew up in Husum, is Professor for Voice Performance at the University of Music in Graz, Austria and the College of Music in Lubeck. Both artists are connected by their long-standing intensive artistic and pedagogical collaboration.

In the fall of 2018, Ulf Bästlein was awarded the highest distinction in the county of North Frisia: The Hans-Momsen Prize, for his long-term service and contribution to cultural life in North Frisia. He recorded a CD dedicated to Klaus Groth, Theodor Storm and Gustav Jenner with the prize money, which appeared in May 2020 on the renowned NAXOS label, with Charles Spencer accompanying. Through this CD, titled “The World is Full of Stillness, Only My Thoughts Wake,” Jenner’s fascinating musical settings of 17 Groth and 22 Storm poems were made accessible to the public for the first time (World Premiere!). Charles Spencer and Ulf Bästlein were recently nominated for the Opus Classic Awards in three categories after its release: “Singer of the Year,” “Solo Voice of the Year in Lied” and also in the category “World Premiere.” The Opus Classic Awards is considered one of the most significant German classical music prizes, and is supported by the Organization for the Fostering of Classical Music. Prizes from this organization have been awarded since 2018.

The self-confessed Schleswig-Holsteiner Ulf Bästlein has always strived in his programming of the concerts within the framework of The Art of the Lied to present portraits of a cultural inheritance and possible future of the music of his home. he names Theodor Storm, Friedrich Hebbel, Emanuel Geibel, Klaus Groth, Johann Heinrich Voß, Herdenack Otto Conrad Zinck, Gustav Jenner, or Hans Christian Détlefsen, among others, can be drawn through the programs as a central recurring theme of the last 19 years of the festival. On the 3rd of August, Ulf Bästlein will be awarded the highest distinction in the state of Schleswig-Holstein from Minister President Daniel Günther for his extraordinary cultural service to the state of Schleswig-Holstein: The Order of Merit.

Support for the participants:

In 2005, the “Friends of the Master Class in The Art of the Lied in the Castle of Husum” was founded. Its goal was and is to facilitate both the financial costs and provision of accommodation for highly talented participants from Germany and other countries. If you are interested in supporting these artists through a membership with the Friends, please contact Darlene Dobisch kontakt@darlene-ann-dobisch.com. You are more than welcome to join us!

Information for the Audience:

Perhaps you are interested in “listening in” on the work in the course? Lessons are open to the public for a small fee and they begin at 1:00 p.m. on Tuesday, July 27th. On the following days, the lessons start at 10:00 a.m. and go on open-end! We will be working, singing, playing, and sweating…

Due to the fact that all pandemic measures must be strictly adhered to, short- term changes to the schedule could occur.

More information about the Master Class, as well as application forms are found at www.liedkunst-schloss-vor-husum.de

The deadline for applications is July 16, 2021.

A cinematic documentary about The Art of the Lied in the Castle of Husum can be found on YouTube: 2015 – Anniversary of the Art of the Lied in the Castle of Husum http://youtu.be/pDW3gCeH9M



Ticket sales begin July 12, 2021 in the County Music School North Frisia office.