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The fourth CD:

The CosmopolitanSongs by Oswald von Wolkenstein


Dedicated to the memory of Ulrich Müller († 2012) and with a preface by Dieter Kühn.


Oswald von Wolkenstein: politician, diplomat, Lord of Hauenstein-castle, Knight of the Reign and bon vivant... these were his "main professions" and they took him to nearly all regions of the world known in his time. Today, he is most famous for his most important "hobbies": he was a master poet, musician and composer, a fine singer and player of diverse instruments and, ostensibly was fluent in around ten languages. From no other poet-composer of the Middle Ages has such a multifaceted repertoire been handed down: he wrote not only popular songs and simple, monophonic narrative songs, but also complex polyphony with refined, intricate part writing. Almost everything that was in vogue during his time can be found in his personal manuscripts, but none of the music in his collection can compare to the strange yet fascinating sounds that came from his own pen.

For the CD "The Cosmopolitan—Songs by Oswald von Wolkenstein", Marc Lewon has compiled a programme with his Ensemble Leones that does justice to Oswald's versatility as poet and musician. Alongside rarely heard pieces, they present a series of premiere recordings ranging from multilingual "macaronic" Lieder and travel descriptions to true musical gems.

Since the songtexts could not be included with the CD-booklet, our online tracklist contains links to the website of the "Oswald von Wolkenstein-Gesellschaft", where all of Oswald's songtexts are online. Oswald's complete oeuvre is translated into English in this PDF download.