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Britten: Complete Scottish Songs
     

Britten: Complete Scottish Songs

by Mark Wilde
 
This album featuring tenor Mark Wilde contains all of Britten's music with Scottish roots, including his original settings of texts by Scots authors like Robert Burns and William Soutar as well as his arrangements of folk songs. "A Birthday Hansel," using Burns' poetry, was written for Queen Elizabeth's 75th birthday in 1976 and was his last

Overview

This album featuring tenor Mark Wilde contains all of Britten's music with Scottish roots, including his original settings of texts by Scots authors like Robert Burns and William Soutar as well as his arrangements of folk songs. "A Birthday Hansel," using Burns' poetry, was written for Queen Elizabeth's 75th birthday in 1976 and was his last song cycle. Britten scored it for tenor and harp, citing the authenticity of harp accompaniment in the Highlands tradition. The harp provides transitions between the songs, so the cycle is musically continuous. "Who are these children?" is also a late work, dating from 1969 with texts by Soutar, a mid-20th century poet. The album concludes with Colin Matthews' effective arrangements of four of the Burns songs with piano accompaniment. Wilde has a pleasant voice but his vowels aren't bright, and their somewhat covered quality sometimes comes across as slightly nasal. This tendency is especially noticeable in the most melismatic passages, such as "My Early Walk" from "A Birthday Hansel," where a single vowel can be strung out for quite a while. He excels in bringing sharp characterization to the songs, which these pieces -- art songs with roots in folk culture -- require in order not to sound precious. He is also effective in singing with unmannered naturalness. Pianist David Owen Norris and harpist Lucy Wakeford provide sensitive accompaniments. Naxos' sound is clean, present, and well-balanced.

Product Details

Release Date:
08/30/2011
Label:
Naxos
UPC:
0747313270675
catalogNumber:
8572706

Related Subjects

Tracks

  1. A Birthday Hansel, song cycle for tenor & harp, Op. 92: 4. My Hoggie
  2. A Birthday Hansel, song cycle for tenor & harp, Op. 92: 3. The Winter
  3. A Birthday Hansel, song cycle for tenor & harp, Op. 92: 2. Wee Willie
  4. A Birthday Hansel, song cycle for tenor & harp, Op. 92: 1. Afton Water
  5. Tradition, song for voice & piano (discarded from "Who are these Children," Op. 84)
  6. The Gully, song for voice & piano (discarded from "Who are these Children," Op. 84)
  7. Dawtie's Devotion, song for voice & piano (discarded from "Who are these Children," Op. 84)
  8. Come you not from Newcastle?, for voice & piano (Folk Songs, Vol. 3)
  9. Bonny at morn, for high voice & guitar (Folk Songs, Vol. 6)
  10. The Bonny Earl o' Moray, for voice & piano (Folk Songs, Vol. 1)
  11. O can ye sew cushions, for voice & piano (Folk Songs, Vol. 1)
  12. There's None to Soothe, for voice & piano (Folk Songs, Vol. 3)
  13. Ca' the yowes, for voice & piano (Folk Songs, Vol. 5)
  14. Beware!, early songs (3) for medium voice & piano: O that I'd ne'er been married
  15. Cradle Song: Sleep, my darling, sleep, song for high voice & piano
  16. Who are these Children?, song cycle for tenor & piano, Op. 84
  17. A Birthday Hansel, song cycle for tenor & harp, Op. 92

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Mark Wilde   Primary Artist

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