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Samuel Barber: Vocal And Chamber Works
 
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Samuel Barber: Vocal And Chamber Works

8 Jun. 2009 | Format: MP3

£6.29 (VAT included if applicable)
Buy the CD album for £11.93 and get the MP3 version for FREE. Does not apply to gift orders.
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1:29
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Product details

  • Original Release Date: 8 Jun. 2009
  • Release Date: 8 Jun. 2009
  • Label: Warner Classics
  • Copyright: (C) 2009 EMI Records Ltd.
  • Record Company Required Metadata: Music file metadata contains unique purchase identifier. Learn more.
  • Total Length: 1:11:22
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B002AR4GSI
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 131,868 in Albums (See Top 100 in Albums)

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By I. R. Munday on 15 Aug. 2011
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
SAMUEL BARBER: String Quartet, Serenade, Dover beach, Songs

This is an excellent disc which, to anyone who has any interest in the works of Samuel Barber, would be a must. It covers a range of works that represent Samuel Barber's output, from his opus 1 written, when he was 18 (if not earlier) to one of his last works, his opus 45.
This is predominantly a song recital disc (being a singer himself, vocal works were an important mode of expression for Barber).
The bulk of the songs are performed by a mature Thomas Allen, a fine singer in my opinion, who here is in firm voice and gives excellently refined and expressive performances.

However the lure for me for the disc was the String Quartets. Opus 1 is of particular interest as Barber wrote it firstly with 4 movements but then edited it down to three. This leaves the Dance (allegro giocoso) as the final movement, and this is a delight. But the work I was really seeking was the string Quartet op 11 (as far as I can determine, this recording being the only one in the current catalogue). This I find somewhat surprising, as the string quartet is the original setting of the famous adagio, which was orchestrated by Barber at a later date. I find listening to the lighter quartet version here really helps focus the mind, whereas the now rather hackneyed and overplayed orchestral version tends to wash over one in a rinse of syrupy fluid. This later string quartet is also in three movements. The first movement and the adagio are 8 & 7 minutes respectively, the closing 3rd movement a brief two and half mins only. However the emotional intensity of this last movement juxtaposed to the languorous lyricism of the 2nd, the adagio, seems to sit perfectly well. It is a bit of a mystery why the work is so rarely performed.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By AndrewH on 28 Oct. 2011
Format: MP3 Download Verified Purchase
I bought the album for two items in particular and return to both frequently: the String Quartet with the sparse original of the Adagio; and the sensitive and wonderfully atmospheric setting of Dover Beach in which the baritone is supported by a string quartet. These are merely the highlights of a very fine compilation.
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Format: Audio CD
Samuel Barber’s primary theme is his exploration of adolescence, lost childhood and youth, according to Wilfrid Mellers (in Chapter 9 of Music in a New Found Land, 1964). Mellers believes Barber is less successful when he tries (as in the opera Vanessa) to universalize this theme in an adult way, as some kind of “idealized abstraction of an American Past”, or when he attempts big romantic gestures (as in the First Symphony). The “true Barber” emerges when his focus is on the personal, on “a specific child ‘realized’ in sound”. That’s first exemplified in his early setting of Matthew Arnold’s poem Dover Beach for voice and string quartet. The poem, says Mellers, expresses “that cry of a young heart, lonely in a hostile world in which Faith is extinct”.

Ah love, let us be true
To one another! For the world which seems
To lie before us like a land of dreams,
So various, so beautiful, so new,
Hath really neither joy, nor love, nor light,
Nor certitude, nor peace, nor help for pain;
And we are here as on a darkling plain
Swept with confused alarms of struggle and flight,
Where ignorant armies clash by night.

The poem begins with an evocation of the calm sea, with the lovers looking out from their window and seeing the lights gleaming across the Channel from the French coast. But gradually, in “the grating roar/Of pebbles which the waves draw back”, they begin to hear something else: “the eternal note of sadness”. The Sea of Faith was once all-surrounding as well, “But now I only hear/Its melancholy, long, withdrawing roar”.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This was bought as a present for a musician.
He was thrilled with all the tracks on this CD.
It arrived swiftly and there were no problems during the transaction.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 1 review
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Adagio 20 Mar. 2014
By Roger Kellaway - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
So this quartet is where the famous adagio for strings comes from. It is remarkable to hear this adagio and it's brilliance being played by only four instruments. We have heard this so many times over the years played by string orchestras. This is also beautiful, in fact, it greatly magnifies the beauty of this is Adagio movement. It's one of my all-time favorite pieces of music!
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