Lieder (pronounced leeder) is German for songs. A 'lied' is a song.
Lieder are written for piano and voice, for performance in homes and concert halls. The piano does more than provide an accompaniment. It is in equal partnership with the voice and has an important role in the song.
The piano part reflects the mood of the poem and the poetic imagery. Lieder have rich, colourful harmony and frequent modulations (changes of key). Common poetic themes are love, longing and the beauty of nature.