100 Years of British Song, Volume 1

GUSTAV HOLST (1874-1934): A Vigil of Pentecost, The Ballad of Hunting Knowe (both first recordings), REBECCA CLARKE (1886-1979): June Twilight, The Seal Man, A Dream, Eight O’Clock, IVOR GURNEY (1890-1937): Down by the Salley Gardens, Snow, Lights Out, Sleep, FRANK BRIDGE (1879-1941): 4 Songs (1925).

Catalogue Number: 11W067

Label: SOMM

Reference: SOMMCD 062

Format: CD

Price: $18.98

Description: Compiled to reflect the rich variety of British song, this volume throws a spotlight on composers who made a considerable contribution to the song repertoire but whose success in other genres often led to their songs being overlooked. All four composers were born in the late 1800s and lived through the horrors of the First World War and the extraordinary social, cultural and political upheaval that followed. Two songs by Holst – the liturgically-accented A Vigil of Pentecost and folk- infused The Ballad of Hunting Knowe – receive first recordings. Songs from Holst’s Twelve Humbert Wolfe Songs are also heard alongside Clarke’s macabre setting of A.E. Housman’s Eight O’Clock and John Masefield’s The Seal Man, which Williamson describes in his informative booklet notes as “one of the most thrilling English songs in the repertoire”. Also featured are Ivor Gurney’s powerful and poignant Snow and Sleep and his affecting treatment of W.B. Yeats’ Down by the Salley Gardens together with Four Songs by Frank Bridge including three romantically heightened settings of Rabindranath Tagore and the deeply moving, lullaby-like Journey’s End to a text by Humbert Wolfe. Texts included. James Gilchrist (tenor), Nathan Williamson (piano).


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