The second volume in this major new recording series, across which world-renowned singers draw listeners, decade by decade, through a century of song from 1810 to 1910. Each volume presents a well-planned, varied programme, performed by household names; but overall the series also has a wider aim, building a comprehensive survey of song right through the nineteenth century and, in doing so, creating an invaluable teaching asset.
Volume 2, 1820-1830, includes songs from Austria, France, Germany, Italy and Russia, with works by Vincenzo Bellini, Mikhail Glinka, Carl Loewe, Felix Mendelssohn, Louis Niedermeyer, Franz Schubert and Robert Schumann. The series continues to mix familiar with rare: as well as presenting music by the great Austrian-German composers, this volume ventures both north and south, heading into early nineteenth-century Russian and Italian music: future volumes will also add works from middle Europe and Scandinavia.
The three principal singers in this volume are mezzosoprano Sarah Connolly, tenor John Mark Ainsley and baritone Christopher Maltman, who are joined by three fine younger singers, tenors Luis Gomes and Robin Tritschler, and Armenian soprano Anush Hovhannisyan, all accompanied by the series’ creator, pianist Malcolm Martineau.
Of especial note in this release is Sarah Connolly’s performance of Schubert’s three ‘Ellen Songs’ (including a glorious rendition of the classic ‘Ave Maria’), Christopher Maltman’s vivid portrayal of Goethe’s ‘Erlkönig’ in Loewe’s setting, and John Mark Ainsley’s beautifully crafted renditions of works by Schubert, Schumann and Mendelssohn.
Extensive presentation includes 64 page booklet (also downloadable) with authoritative liner note in three languages by renowned song expert and series consultant Prof Susan Youens; full texts and translations are provided, together with six pages of artist photographs.