Ohrwurm und Taube


Ohrwurm und Taube - (2011)    

Joachim Ringelnatz

for medium voice and piano


Der Ohrwurm mochte die Taube nicht leiden.
Sie haßte den Ohrwurm ebenso.
Da trafen sich eines Tages die beiden
in einer Straßenbahn irgendwo.

Sie schüttelten sich erfreut die Hände
und lächelten liebenswürdig dabei
und sagten einander ganze Bände
von übertriebener Schmeichelei.

Doch beide wünschten sie sich im stillen,
der andre möge zum Teufel gehn,
und da es geschah nach ihrem Willen,
so gab es beim Teufel ein Wiedersehn.

3 pages, circa 1' 45"

Joachim Ringelnatz


A catchy tune abhorred a deaf dove;
The dove hated the tune foursquare.
One day they met, as push by shove,
Traveling in a tram somewhere.

They shook hands as if friendship bloomed;
Smiles brightened thoughts of battery.
They praised each other in volumes perfumed,
Spewing such inflated  flattery.

They each wanted to silence the other,
That the other should god speed to hell.
Accordingly it happened, one way or another,
The devil saw them again in their sulfured cell.


rhymed paraphrase by the composer



The cabaret like texture of the accompaniment in general is meant to be secco, such that the occasional slurs be brought out over the brittleness. The slipping by half-step between tonalities forces the vocal line into interesting permutations. A center section for the second stanza breaks the verses into a standard ABA form.



For other settings of Ringelnatz' many fanciful and some serious verses, click here.


The score for Ohrwurm und Taube is available as a free PDF download, though any major commercial performance or recording of the work is prohibited without prior arrangement with the composer. Click on the graphic below for this piano-vocal score.


Ohrwurm und Taube