Swiss Tenor Eric Tappy was well-known for his stage performances, particularly in Monteverdi’s Orfeo or the big Mozart operas. This unexpected Schöne Müllerin is therefore a total surprise, and it is worth explaining the circumstances of this first edition.
We are back in 1974, Eric Tappy and his pianist Ruben Lifschitz feel they are ready, after many months of rehearsals, to present Schubert’s wonderful cycle to the public. The day before the recording, they were invited to the Chamber music room of the Concertgebouw Amsterdam and gave a highly successful first public performance. Serene, the artists went to Hilversum and recorded the whole cycle in a single day, for radio broadcast.
A few weeks later, the cycle was broadcast on Dutch Radio KRO; one of the listeners recorded the programme on his Revox and sent the tape to Eric Tappy in Switzerland, who put it safely away, hoping that he would find time to listen to it some day. Indeed he did, but thirty-five years later…. As for the listener who sent the precious tape in 1974, he was none other but one of the greatest Swiss composers of the 20th century, Frank Martin, who was at the time living in Naarden in the Netherlands, and who was a friend of Eric Tappy’s.