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18th-century Portuguese Love Songs

18th-century Portuguese Love Songs


anon.:

Ganinha, minha Ganinha

Sandra Medeiros (soprano) & Joana Seara (soprano)

Foi por mim, foi pela sorte

Sandra Medeiros (soprano)

A minha Nerina

Joana Seara (soprano)

É delícia ter amor

Os 'me deixas' que tu dás

Sandra Medeiros (soprano) & Joana Seara (soprano)

Avondano, P A:

Minuet IV

Minuet VI

Leite, A:

Tempo que breve passaste

Joana Seara (soprano)

Tocata do Sr Francisco Gerardo

Taro Takeuchi (guitar) & Zak Ozmo (guitar)

Onde vas linda Negrinha

Sandra Medeiros (soprano) & Joana Seara (soprano)

Minuete

Taro Takeuchi (guitar) & Zak Ozmo (guitar)

Maurício:

Sobre as asas da ternura

Sandra Medeiros (soprano) & Joana Seara (soprano)

Que fiz eu à natureza?

Joana Seara (soprano)

É amor a lei suave

Sandra Medeiros (soprano)

Portugal:

Você trata amor em brinco

Sandra Medeiros (soprano) & Joana Seara (soprano)

Já, já me vai, Marília

Sandra Medeiros (soprano)

Cuidados, tristes cuidados

Sandra Medeiros (soprano) & David Gordon (harpsichord)

Scarlatti, D:

Keyboard Sonata K466 in F minor

David Gordon (harpsichord)

Seixas:

Toccata No. 8

David Gordon (harpsichord) & Zak Ozmo (guitar)


L'Avventura London, Zak Ozmo (director)

L’Avventura London and their director Zak Ozmo make their debut on Hyperion with a lusciously saucy album of Portuguese love songs from the eighteenth century. Described by a contemporary visitor as ‘voluptuous and bewitching’, these modinhas have an uncertain genesis, but it is likely they reached Portugal from its overseas dominion of Brazil. Two highly contrasting styles predominate: one melancholic and lyrical, and the other bright and rhythmic, often with syncopated rhythms in the voice. Also interspersed are instrumental works from the period.

The spirited players of L’Avventura London are joined by two Portuguese sopranos, Sandra Medeiros and Joana Seara, who are also early music specialists in their own right.

“Stylistically, the songs are a curious fusion of polite salon music of a somewhat saccharine sentimentality - epitome of the fashionable and graceful Galant style - and the sensual melodies and vigorous dance rhythms of Latino folk, imported from Brazil...L'Avventura's performances tend towards the genteel, suggesting decorous courtly soirees rather than raunchy street theatre...These are, in short, charming accounts” BBC Music Magazine, February 2013 ***

“[Seara] blends well with Medeiros and you get accustomed to the strong hint of citrus in their voices...The percussion...consists of a shaker in one number and the cellist tapping her instrument like a drum! Yet that's a major part of the appeal of this 'fusion' disc, melding 'classical' and popular idioms in a manner that recalls Chrstina Pluhar's L'Arpeggiata discs.” International Record Review, February 2013

“This disc is packed full of the charming and the poignant. Surprise yourself. I doubt that anyone with heart will be disappointed.” MusicWeb International, 3rd June 2013

“This excellently researched, performed and packaged album of songs and Portuguese instrumental music a revelation. Guitarist Žak Ozmo and his instrumental group L’Avventura London are joined by two Portuguese sopranos, Sandra Medeiros and Joana Seara, and their fervent – occasionally wild – singing is perfect for the intertwining lines and suggestive harmonies of the modinhas...Ravishing on disc, this programme should be even more enjoyable live in concert.” Early Music Today *****

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Britten: Songs & Proverbs of William Blake

Britten: Songs & Proverbs of William Blake

and other songs


anon.:

Lemady

arr. Benjamin Britten & Colin Matthews

She's like the swallow

arr. Benjamin Britten & Colin Matthews

Britten:

I wonder as I wander

Songs and Proverbs of William Blake, Op. 74

Tit for Tat

Um Mitternacht

A Poison Tree (Blake)

Evening, Morning, Night from Ronald Duncan's 'This Way to the Tomb'

Greensleeves

The Crocodile

The Deaf Woman's Courtship

Bird Scarer's Song

Dibdin:

Tom Bowling from The Oddities (1789)

arr. Benjamin Britten

Owen, D:

David of the White Rock

arr. Benjamin Britten & Colin Matthews


Gerald Finley (baritone) & Julius Drake (piano)

The unbeatable, multi-award-winning partnership of Gerald Finley and Julius Drake turn to the composer Benjamin Britten for their latest Hyperion release.

Although Britten is particularly celebrated for the substantial body of music he composed for the tenor voice, the composer also left an important legacy of music for baritone. Characteristically, Britten’s output for low voice was also inspired by the talents of specific performers with whom he was closely associated, among them Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau and John Shirley-Quirk. In addition to song-cycles, individual songs and folksong arrangements, Britten wrote challenging baritone roles in operas as diverse as Billy Budd (1951), Owen Wingrave (1970) and Death in Venice (1972)—the title role of the second of these made very much Gerald Finley’s own in his magnificent interpretation in Margaret Williams’s 2001 television film of the opera.

This disc contains Britten’s two important song cycles for baritone: Tit for Tat, setting the poems of Walter de la Mare, and the more substantial and challenging Songs and Proverbs of William Blake. The latter was written for Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau; designed to showcase his unique blend of intense lyricism and dramatic characterization, qualities which are undoubtedly also exhibited by Gerald Finley.

Also included are some of Britten’s popular folksong settings, and a selection of later songs, which received exposure and publication only after the composer’s death in December 1976.

“Finley as ever acquits himself as a fine singer, a conscientious artist and a thoroughly reliable musician....In all (including the Blake) Julius Drake is the superb pianist.” Gramophone Magazine, July 2010

“Gerald Finley sings them all with such an unwaveringly beautiful tone and attention to every syllable, and pianist Julian Drake is so wonderfully attuned to the baritone's inflections...Finley comes into his own in the final Every Night and Every Morn, and Drake's handling of the powerfully wrought accompaniments is superb.” The Guardian, 3rd June 2010 ****

“Finley’s watchwords are directness and clarity, both of which come across to splendid effect in the folk-song arrangements and the comic duet The Deaf Woman’s Courtship, in which he performs both parts. Drake is his admirable partner in this outstanding enterprise.” Sunday Times, 13th June 2010 ****

“[Finley] just seems to be singing naturally, but at the same time he colors and inflects with astonishing specificity. He manages to vary the repeats in those folk-song settings where verses are repeated...His diction is crisp and clear, which adds to the dramatic impact of his singing.” Fanfare, 26th October 2010

GGramophone Awards 2011

Best of Category - Solo Vocal

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Conductus, Vol. 1

Conductus, Vol. 1

Music & poetry from thirteenth-century France


1. Quo vadis, quo progrederis?

2. Genitus divinitus

3. Quod promisit ab eterno

4. Artium dignitas

5. Relegentur ab area

6. Qui servare puberem [monophonic]

7. Ut non ponam

8. Qui servare puberem [two-part, unmeasured]

9. Porta salutis

10. Ista dies celebrari

11. Qui servare puberem [two-part, measured]

12. Stephani sollempnia

13. Beate virginis

14. Qui servare puberem [three-part]

15. Heu quo progreditur

16. Stella serena


John Potter (tenor), Christopher O'Gorman (tenor) & Rogers Covey-Crump (tenor)

Hyperion has long been a champion of music from the medieval era and boasts many first recordings in its catalogue, which have combined the highest levels of scholarship with brilliant musicianship, won many awards and opened the ears of a generation of listeners to the repertoire.

In this latest release John Potter, Christopher O’Gorman and Rogers Covey-Crump continue this trail-blazing voyage with a selection from the Conductus genre: the first experiments towards polyphony—the kind of sound we associate with Pérotin. Extensive booklet notes by Mark Everist probe into the intricacies of performance practice as well as analysing the music and poetry in context. This is an important historical document as well as a stunning and committed performance.

“The poems are about life, death, salvation and, naturally, the frail virtues of women...Three tenors – John Potter, Christopher O'Gorman and Rogers Covey-Crump – deliver these explorations with unerring skill and conviction.” The Observer, 16th September 2012

“everything is immaculately clean: every passing dissonance is dead in place and nothing extrinsic is added to the music. It sounds lovely. What is just slightly odd about these performances is that they seem not to make much distinction between songs in praise of the Virgin Mary, songs of political anger and songs about a whore...But these are seriously classy performances.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2012

“Conductus proves that ascetic simplicity can be as deeply moving and aesthetically breath-taking as the mst complex, heart-on-sleeve music...It's hardly necessary to mention they are superb, their precise diction well-served by Jeremy Summerly's production and Julian Millard's engineering.” BBC Music Magazine, December 2012 ****

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Delectatio angeli

Delectatio angeli

Music of love, longing & lament


anon.:

Ar ne kuth ich sorghe non (The Prisoner's Song)

English Dance

Four Planctus (Las Huelgas ms)

Bedyngham:

O rosa bella

Ciconia:

Per quella strada

Una panthera

Dufay:

L'alta belleza tua

Helas mon dueil

Vergene bella

Landini, F:

Giunta vaga biltá

Meaux:

Trop est mes maris jalos

Perugia, M:

Le greygnour bien

Vaillant:

Par maintes foys

Ventadorn:

Can vei la lauzeta mover


Catherine Bott (soprano), Pavlo Beznosiuk (fiddle), Mark Levy (fiddle)

“These performances must rank amongst Bott's best (and that's saying something), her range sometimes impinging in pitch and timbre on alto/counter-tenor territory. Whatever the mood, and whether singing with the fiddles or unaccompanied, her voice is rich and expressive, no more so than on the a capella first Planctus and a stunning love song by Bernart de Ventadorn.” BBC Music Magazine, March 2006 *****

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How the world wags

How the world wags


anon.:

Jovial Broom Man

The Miller Of Dee

Bennet:

The Hunt Is Up

Croft:

Sonata In G

Locke:

Ayre From Little Consort Suite No. 1 In G Minor

Purcell:

Pox on you for a fop, Z268

Ravenscroft, T:

Who Liveth So Merry

Martin Said To His Man


The City Waites

Barbara Grant (soprano), Keith Thompson (alto/tenor), Nicholas Hayley (bass), Pethick Edwards (reader), Douglas Wootton

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Jerusalem: Vision of Peace

Jerusalem: Vision of Peace


anon.:

Luto carens et latere

Jerusalem! grant damage me fais

Jerusalem accipitur

Te Deum

O levis aurula!

Hac in die Gedeonis

In salvatoris/Ce fu en tres douz tens/In veritate/Veritatem

Music from The Mass of Easter Day in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem, c1130

Veri vitis germine

Luget Rachel iterum

Invocantes Dominum/Psalm: Deus, qui venerunt

Congaudet hodie celestis curia

Dijon:

Chanterai por mon coraige

Hildegard:

O Jerusalem aurea civitatis, sequence to St Rupert

St Quentin:

Jerusalem se plaint et li pais


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The Language of Love

The Language of Love

Songs of the troubadours and trouvères


anon.:

Por coi me bait mes maris?

Dansse Real

La Tierche Estampie Roial

En un vergier

La Quarte Estampie Royal

En ma forest

Bele Doette

[La Prime Estampie Royal]

Bornelh:

Reis glorios

Faidit:

Lo rossinholet salvatge

Muset:

Volez oir la muse Muset?

Ventadorn:

Can l’erba fresch’


Faye Newton (soprano) & Hazel Brooks (vielle)

Duo Trobairitz

The pain of unrequited love, the pleasures of spring, foiled seductions and cruel husbands, and the chivalry of serving a liege-lady: in this recording Duo Trobairitz explore different aspects of love as depicted in the music and poetry of the 12th- and 13th-century troubadours and trouvères.

“For the most part Duo Trobairitz's decisions make musical sense and are effectively enacted. Voice and fiddle interact well; the choice of pieces is well judged.” Gramophone Magazine, October 2007

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Bach - Cantatas 54, 169, 170

Bach - Cantatas 54, 169, 170


Bach, J S:

Cantata BWV170 'Vergnügte Ruh, beliebte Seelenlust'

Cantata BWV54 'Widerstehe doch der Sünde'

Cantata BWV169 'Gott soll allein mein Herze haben'


“After hearing the first three notes of Cantata 170 my expectations of this recording were high. I was not disappointed” Hi-Fi News

“James Bowman is on impressive form and his admirers need not hesitate here” Penguin Guide

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JS Bach: Cantatas Nos 54, 82 & 170

JS Bach: Cantatas Nos 54, 82 & 170


Bach, J S:

Cantata BWV170 'Vergnügte Ruh, beliebte Seelenlust'

Cantata BWV54 'Widerstehe doch der Sünde'

Cantata BWV82 'Ich habe genug'

Sinfonia: Cantata BWV174

Cantata BWV52 'Falsche Welt, dir trau ich nicht': Sinfonia


Ich habe genug is a timeless, transcendental masterpiece: a profound expression of Christian faith at the very end of life. It demands artistry of a special order, and Iestyn Davies now joins the likes of Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau and Lorraine Hunt Lieberson in the work’s distinguished discography. The couplings are equally ravishing performances of two other great solo cantatas, while the two orchestral sinfonias which complete the album will prove refreshingly familiar.

“Davies’s singular gifts of open-hearted expression, reined in to perfection and with no excess or indulgence, are expertly balanced by Arcangelo’s prominent solo musicians. Early in the year, a favourite disc already.” The Observer, 8th January 2017 *****

“The dominant virtue in this fine collaboration between the outstanding Davies and Arcangelo lies in an unsentimental perspicacity, reassuring in its intelligence and deep sensitivity.” Gramophone Magazine, January 2017

“The main pleasure in this album is the partnership between the eloquent soloist and the tangy playing of Arcangelo, wonderfully led by Jonathan Cohen, who doubles as a fizzing organist...Davies’s cool concentration heats up for a compelling Ich habe genug, finely weighted between religious ecstasy and resignation.” The Times, 13th January 2017 ****

“Iestyn Davies [gives a] poised, sober performance…Arcangelo’s strings have a beautifully firm sound, with plenty of bow and intelligent details from the lute, while oboist Katharina Spreckelsen plays elegantly” BBC Music Magazine, January 2017 ****

“If his German is not entirely idiomatic, his words are invariably clear and he relishes the interplay with the Arcangelo ensemble’s soloists...Best of all is the rapt singing of Schlummert ein (Go to sleep), in the well-known BWV82…Overall, a lovely disc.” Sunday Times, 15th January 2017

“Iestyn Davies is intently communicative with the words in the much-loved ‘Vergnügte Ruh’ and ‘Ich habe genug’” Financial Times

“A simply outstanding Bach disc.” MusicWeb International, 12th January 2017

“Davies sails serenely on through all vocal obstacles” Early Music Today, May 2017 *****

GGramophone Awards 2017

Winner - Baroque Vocal

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - January 2017

Gramophone Award Winners

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Barber - Songs

Barber - Songs


Barber:

There's Nae Lark

Beggar's Song

In the Dark Pinewood

Bessie Bobtail

Hermit Songs, Op. 29

Rain has fallen

Sleep Now

I hear an army

Mélodies passagères (5), Op. 27

The Daisies

With rue my heart is laden, Op. 2 No. 2

Four Songs, Op. 13, No. 4 (Nocturne)

Dover Beach, Op. 3

Sure on this shining night, Op. 13 No. 3


Gerald Finley (baritone) & Julius Drake (piano)

The Aronowitz Ensemble

The wonderful Gerald Finley, described recently as ‘the best living baritone currently at the peak of his powers’ (The Globe and Mail), brings his ‘glorious sound and great dramatic instinct’ to this fascinating selection of songs, sensitively accompanied by Julius Drake.

“This is a pretty stunning achievement. At his most mellifluous and focused, Gerald Finley has beauty of tone to spare. But he is also at his most expressive – hollowing out the voice for the hopelessness of the song “Bessie Bobtail”, letting it splinter with anger at the climax of the brief, furious “Sea Snatch”. Throughout, Julius Drake proves a predictably accomplished, thoughtful partner. The pair move easily and logically from the prettiness of the very early songs through the complexities of the Hermit Songs and the pensive Mélodies passagères. It’s a canny move to place Dover Beach as the final track. The introduction of the string quartet to close the disc shifts the mood, sending us off in another direction. It comes as a hopeful reminder of the wonder of love, even with a sting in its tail. Entirely appropriate for a bittersweet, marvellous collection.” Gramophone Magazine

“Performances of this calibre emphasise Barber's stature in the mainstream… The immediate comparison is with the Gramophone Award-winning Thomas Hampson… Most I prefer Finley, and the recording is warmer.” Gramophone Magazine, Janurary 2008

“As on his 2005 Ives collection, the Canadian baritone Gerald Finley is golden in tone, persuasive in phrasing, and unfailingly responsive to the sound and sense of the words. Julius Drake once more proves a strong and imaginative partner, and a quartet from the Aronowitz Ensemble makes a promising recording debut.” BBC Music Magazine, December 2007 *****

“Performances of this calibre emphasise Barber's stature in the mainstream of 20th-century song composers. The tradition is Anglo-American and There's nae lark, written when Barber was 16 to a poem by Swinburne in imitation Scots, could even be by Quilter.
But Barber soon gets into his stride and by the time he reached his Three Songs, Op 10, there's a rare kind of intensity as impressive as anything on this CD. The poems are from James Joyce's Chamber Music; Barber set a few more, such as Inthe dark pinewood included here; but what a tragedy he never set the whole cycle that could have been an American Winterreise. The Hermit Songs, fey and whimsically amusing, are probably the best-known set.
'Sure on the shining shore' is vintage Barber, and Finley and Drake are impeccable (as are the Aronowitz Quartet in Dover Beach). The French songs, to poems by Rilke, who did write in French, have less character, but the single songs are all gems. An outstanding release.”
Gramophone Classical Music Guide, 2010

GGramophone Awards 2008

Best of Category - Solo Vocal

GGramophone Magazine

Disc of the Month - January 2008

BBC Music Magazine

Choral & Song Choice - December 2007

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