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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars very enjoyable disc, 4 Nov 2012
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schumann_bg - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Virgins Vixens & Viragos - Susan Graham (Audio CD)
Susan Graham's voice is really splendid on this disc, fully bearing out the impression she makes live. Having once heard her in Chausson's Poeme de l'amour et de la mer and found her memorably involved in her projection of the emotion of that work, I had high expectations of similar intensity being brought to the virgins, vixens, and viragos of the new recording, and I was not at all disappointed! Everything is beautifully sung, from the opening Purcell (The Blessed Virgin's Expostulation), which is quite shattering in its emotional impact, through the elegiac plaintiveness of Berlioz' La Mort d'Orphelie, and on to the highly original juxtapositions of a set of songs all by different Romantic composers based on the Mignon character from Goethe's Wilhelm Meister. The quality of all of these is amazing, culminating in a Wolf setting that is one of the most awe-inspiring of Lieder ... (The others are by Schubert, Schumann, Liszt, Duparc, and Tchaikovsky). The centrepiece of the programme is a wonderful 7 minute scena on Macbeth by Joseph Horovitz, which I found full of emotion, and would make me want to hear more of his work; he also contributes an excellent, succinct note on the whole programme which reads like the distillation of his thoughts on repertoire he has lived with for a long time. After this the mood lightens considerably - a bit like a cloudy (but interesting and unsettled) morning giving way to a sunlit afternoon, but not without a few darker gusts in the strange tone of Louise de Vilmorin's poems, Fiancailles pour rire, as set by Poulenc. The same composer's Les chemins de l'amour has a most delightful melody in a lighter vein, and the remaining items, by Cole Porter, Vernon Duke and Stephen Sondheim, bring the recital to a high-spirited close - maybe champagne on the balcony at dusk - under a rosy sky!? Malcolm Martineau proves a very sensitive accompanist throughout. My only slight reservation is that, with so many different composers represented, the concept for the disc does seem a little wide, a bit like pick-and-mix, but of the classiest and most enjoyable kind, and with some surprising depths plumbed along the way.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Quite a performer!, 3 April 2013
By 
Dr. Geoffrey L. Woodcock "Saints supporter" (Liverpool, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Virgins Vixens & Viragos - Susan Graham (Audio CD)
Susan Graham is on top form and demonstrates her versatility , not only in songs chosen but in her linguistic ability - even Welsh! Not bad for a Texan!
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good Purchase, 14 Jan 2013
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This review is from: Virgins Vixens & Viragos - Susan Graham (Audio CD)
I read a review about this in the Sunday Times and decided to buy it. The reviews were excellent and this does not disappoint.
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0 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Susan Graham, 30 Dec 2012
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This review is from: Virgins Vixens & Viragos - Susan Graham (Audio CD)
We've not yet played it, but Susan Graham has never disappointed us. Her selection of works is always impeccable. We've no hestiation in grading the recording well, even without hearing it yet!
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Virgins Vixens & Viragos - Susan Graham
Virgins Vixens & Viragos - Susan Graham by Susan Graham (Audio CD - 2012)
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