Brahms Lullaby

A History of Johannes Brahms "Brahms Lullaby"



Good evening, good night,

With roses covered,

With cloves adorned,

Slip under the covers.

Tomorrow morning, if God wills,

you will wake once again.



Good evening, good night.

By angels watched,

Who show you in your dream

the Christ-child's tree.

Sleep now blissfully and sweetly,

see the paradise in your dream.

Johannes Brahms was a German composer, Conductor, and Pianist of the Romantic era. He was born in Hamburg, Germany into a Lutheran family. However, Brahms spent much of his professional life in Vienna, Austria. His reputation and status as a composer is highly remarked and grouped with Johann Sebastian Bach and Ludwig van Beethoven as one of the "Three Bs" of music. Brahms composed for symphony orchestra, chamber ensembles, piano, organ, and voice and chorus. He was known to have worked with some of the leading performers of his time, including the pianist Clara Schumann and the violinist Joseph Joachim. Many of his works have become staples of the modern concert repertoire. Brahms was notorious for being a perfectionist which left many of his works destroyed and many left others unpublished.

Johannes Brahms's Wiegenlied, frequently referred to in English as Brahms's Lullaby or Cradle Song, is the composer's Op. 49, No. 4, originally written for voice and piano was published in 1868. The Lullaby was dedicated to Brahms's friend, Bertha Faber, on the occasion of the birth of her second son. Brahms had been in love with her in her youth and constructed the melody of the "Wiegenlied" to suggest, as a hidden counter-melody, a song she used to sing to him. The lullaby was first performed in public on 22 December 1869 in Vienna by Louise Dustmann (singer) and Clara Schumann (piano).