RICHARD DANIELPOUR (b.1958): Songs of Solitude for Baritone and Orchestra, War Songs for Baritone and Orchestra, Toward the Splendid for Orchestra.
Catalogue Number: 10S082
Description: Two powerful, emotionally direct indictments of the horrors inflicted by conflict, terrorism and war, in the composer's customary neo-romantic idiom which lends itself ideally to the communication of intensely moving musical imagery. Songs of Solitude is a 9/11 requiem, setting poems of W.B. Yeats. As a lament for the hideous events of that day, the work sets a predominantly elegiac tone, with outbursts of rage, aside from the furious 'Drinking Song', which has has a swaggering, Bernsteinesque strut. Yeats' dark, disturbing evocations - "things fall apart/the centre cannot hold/mere anarchy is loosed upon the world" are astonishingly apt, and are framed in appropriately dark music. War Songs commemorates the dead of the Iraq war in Whitman's Civil War poetry. The work is significantly different in tone, acknowledging that while no less tragic, the horrors of war are qualitatively different from the mindless slaughter of civilians, and admit a wider range of emotion; heroism, pity, the brutality of the battlefield and the lingering sense of loss of those left behind, all eloquently expressed in Whitman's vivid, tender poetry and heightened by Danielpour's sensitive settings. The propulsive, Bernsteinesque Toward the Splendid City is an energetic portrait of New York. Texts included. Thomas Hampson (baritone), Nashville Symphony; Giancarlo Guerrero.