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Thread: What vocal music have you been listening to, lately?

          
   
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  1. #421
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Festat's Avatar
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    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    Natalie

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    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Festat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soave_Fanciulla View Post
    How did you like it? I saw this a while ago but I ended up going for a mezzo instead. I liked her mole, though.

  4. #424
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Festat View Post
    How did you like it? I saw this a while ago but I ended up going for a mezzo instead. I liked her mole, though.
    Cute but not particularly memorable. I only listened to it because Auckland library had it.

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    Today, because sometimes you need a change from Winterreise

    Natalie

  5. #425
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Clayton's Avatar
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    Couperin - Leçons de Ténèbres
    Sophie Daneman (soprano), Patricia Petibon (soprano)
    Les Arts Florissants, William Christie
    Recorded October 1996, Salle Wigram Paris

    Name:  Couperin - Leçons de Ténèbres.jpg
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  6. #426
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Florestan's Avatar
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    "Music is enought for a whole lifetime--but a lifetime is not enough for music." --Sergei Vasilyevich Rachmaninoff

  7. #427
    Opera Lively News Coordinator Top Contributor Member MAuer's Avatar
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    Antonin Reicha: Lenore
    Dramatic cantata based on Gottfried August Bürger’s ballad of the same name

    Conductor: Frieder Bernius
    Prague Chamber Choir and Virtuosi di Praga
    Corby Welch (Narrator), Camilla Nylund (Lenore), Vladimir Chmelo (Wilhelm), Pavla Vykopalová (Lenore’s mother)

    I ordered this from Amazon back in February, and after a couple of delays, it still hadn’t been delivered by 10 June. Meanwhile, it was in stock again at Presto Classical (and cheaper than at Amazon). So I canceled the first order and placed a new one with PC, thinking I should have done this from the beginning. Even if I’d had to wait six weeks for Presto to order it, I still would have received it long before now.
    The ballad which Beethoven’s pal Antonin Reicha set to music was written in 1773 and is the late 18th/early 19th century version of a horror story. It is set in two parts, in the first of which the narrator and chorus relate how the hero Wilhelm (if one can call him that) went off to fight in the Prussian army in the Seven Years War, but never returned with the other soldiers when peace was declared. His fiancée, Lenore, has been anxiously waiting for him since then, wondering if he’s alive or dead, and she’s in a pretty desperate state. Her mother tries to comfort her by suggesting she say the Lord’s Prayer and trust in God, but Lenore will hear none of it. (Mama also unhelpfully suggests that Wilhelm may have been unfaithful and married some other woman while he was serving in Hungary.) In any event, Lenore essentially tells her mother that God isn’t going to do her any good – and any upright, God-fearing individual from the late 1700s/early 1800s would have known right then that this young lady will come to a bad end for her lack of piety and faith. Lenore has already retired for the night when Wilhelm shows up on his black charger and wants to carry her off and marry her. She has misgivings – as well she might, when he tells her that “We and the dead ride swiftly” – but finally jumps up behind him on the black steed (another ill omen) and off they dash. In the second part, the narrator and chorus tell of their wild ride, accompanied by bells and ravens beating their wings (more bad omens). The bells are in fact a death knoll and a funeral procession, complete with priest, sexton, coffin, and bier, soon arrives on the scene. At Wilhelm’s order, the bier disappears, but everyone else continues following the supposed bride and groom. By now, Lenore is really starting to worry, despite Wilhelm’s assurances that he’s taking her to the altar, and when he summons a bunch of dancing ghosts to join them and keeps repeating that business about the dead riding swiftly, she isn’t exactly reassured and keeps begging him to let the dead rest. And sure enough, their ride ends at a cemetery, where the gravestones are illuminated by moonlight. As daybreak approaches, Wilhelm announces that their journey is at an end. In a grisly transformation, his flesh drops away, leaving only his skeleton; the horse rears up, his nostrils spouting flame; and as horse and rider disappear, more spirits rise up out of their graves and surround the terrified Lenore. Of course, the marriage bed and cozy little home to which Wilhelm was taking her was a tomb. As the cantata ends, the chorus delivers the moral of the story, warning the listener that, however sorely tried, he or she would be well advised not to question Divine Providence.
    I really enjoyed this cantata. To be sure, Reicha isn’t Beethoven, but the style of his writing is clearly of the early Romantic period rather than hearkening back to Mozart – though a few of the “spooky” choruses in Part II are reminiscent of Baroque chorales. (Interestingly, he completed Lenore in 1805, the same year the original version of Fidelio premiered at the Theater an der Wien, and Beethoven tried to interest his own patron, Prince Eszterházy, in his friend’s composition – but to no avail.) In addition to the usual recitatives, solos, duets, and choruses, the work also contains several instrumental interludes in Part II with the funeral procession and various ghost dances. The last-mentioned seem more sprightly than spooky, though Reicha really lets loose in the concluding storm music. The narrator is sung by Corby Welch with a pleasant lyric tenor that’s clearly on the verge of developing into a Jugendlich Dramatischer. Camilla Nylund is a fabulous Lenore – I really bought the recording on the basis of her involvement in it – and the Czech baritone Vladimir Chmelo has an attractive voice that he uses to capture Wilhelm’s increasingly sinister character. I’m not sure about the casting of Pavla Vykopalová as Lenore’s mother. She has a lovely, light lyric mezzo, but it makes her sound more like Lenore’s kid sister. Frieder Bernius leads a rousing performance by the orchestra Virtuosi di Praga and the Prague Chamber Choir. The accompanying booklet contains plenty of information about Bürger and Reicha as well as the text of the ballad. However, there are no translations for the ballad, though a synopsis of the plot is provided. Still, this recording was worth the long wait; it’s lots of fun (though I’m not sure either Reicha or Bürger would appreciate that description), and I know I’ll listen to it again.

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    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Festat's Avatar
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    Natalie

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    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Florestan's Avatar
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    "Music is enought for a whole lifetime--but a lifetime is not enough for music." --Sergei Vasilyevich Rachmaninoff

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    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Festat's Avatar
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  12. #432
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    All of Stravinsky's vocal music.

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    Natalie

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    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Festat's Avatar
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