EDWARD RUSHTON (b.1972): The Shops.
Catalogue Number: 07K112
Description: The Shops is about the compulsion of collecting, and the potential for the collector's mentality to distort into obsession, even kleptomania. A black comedy of personality, the libretto by actress Dagny Gioulami is barbed and clever, winkingly knowing and self-referencing in the best tradition of meta-fiction. Musically, the work is thoroughly accessible, the characters acting their parts as much as singing, with clear, fluid vocal lines that render even the more complex ensemble numbers entirely comprehensible - essential, with a dialogue-driven work like this. The instrumental textures are likewise clear and uncluttered, firmly grounded in tonality, dramatically underlining the action while leaving the principal argument to the singers. Libretto included. Darren Abrahams (tenor), Anna Dennis (soprano), Phyllis Cannan (contralto), Richard Burkhardt (baritone), The Opera Group; Patrick Bailey.