RC 73 Ik ben in eenzaamheid niet meer alleen

  • Deyssel, Lodewijk van
  • soprano and orchestra
  • October 25, 1906 - November 1, 1906
  • duration 4:00

Three days after completing the orchestral score of Wenn ich ihn nur habe (If Only I Have Him, RC 72) Diepenbrock started orchestrating Ik ben in eenzaamheid niet meer alleen (I Am No Longer Alone in Solitude, RC 41), which he had set for soprano or tenor and piano in 1898. Aaltje Noordewier-Reddingius wanted to perform this song at one of the two concerts at which the Amsterdam Concertgebouw had given her the opportunity to present five orchestral songs by Diepenbrock. At the concert of 22 November 1906 she premiered Ik ben in eenzaamheid niet meer alleen, in a setting for a small orchestra consisting of strings, woodwinds, four horns, bass tuba and timpani, alongside the orchestrated versions of the Lied der Spinnerin (Song of the Spinner, also from 1898, RC 42/75) and Zij sluimert (She Slumbers, 1900, RC 51/60). The day before the premiere of Wenn ich ihn nur habe and Wenige wissen das Geheimnis der Liebe (Few Know the Secret of Love, RC 47/58) had taken place.

The programme booklet contained the texts of the poems and programme notes that were most likely by Diepenbrock, giving information about the form of this song (see RC 41).

The performance was a huge disappointment for Diepenbrock, due to the conductor’s superficial and sloppy preparations. There had been little rehearsal time; the songs had only been played through to check whether there were any mistakes in the orchestral parts. As a result: Mengelberg [was] not into it, no coherence at all. (from the diary of Diepenbrock’s wife Elisabeth; BD V:267)

The fact that the compositions were not done justice is conveyed in a review by Anton Averkamp:

The composer has orchestrated them for small orchestra, which he has done with a great amount of subtle feeling for sound and colour and with that refined understanding of the requirements of the voice we expect from Diepenbrock. Nevertheless, I believe that they would make a greater impression with piano accompaniment. To the execution of the piano part one can add a more personal touch, lift a veil of an intimate, rich spiritual life; and it was this intimacy that was lost somewhat in the orchestral accompaniment. […] However, the sound of the postlude of Deyssel’s sonnet has increased in intensity through the orchestral accompaniment. (BD V:707)

The orchestral version of Ik ben in eenzaamheid niet meer alleen was not performed again during Diepenbrock’s lifetime.

Robert Spannenberg