WGBH Radio WGBH Radio theclassicalstation.org

Skempton: Pigs Could Fly, Alice Is One; Britten, Tavener, Bliss, Rutter, Etc / Corp, Wells, Et Al


Release Date: 11/18/2008 
Label:  Naxos   Catalog #: 8572113   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Howard SkemptonBenjamin BrittenRonald CorpRichard Rodney Bennett,   ... 
Performer:  Alexander Wells
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Children's Choir
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 6 Mins. 

In Stock: Usually ships in 24 hours.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews

Here's an essential recording for fans of music for treble choir--and for listeners who may never have experienced the highest standard of children's choir singing and repertoire. The excellent program is varied and very sophisticated while offering the exuberance and spirit we expect from young singers in music perfectly suited to their voices and to the child's particular love of all things funny, frightful, and fanciful, conveyed by beautiful tunes and engaging rhythms.

Humor (and a healthy dose of nonsense) frames the program, beginning with Howard Skempton's Pigs could fly (to his own text) and ending with a set of short pieces by Nicholas Maw titled Calico Pie. This includes such songs as "We're all in the
Read more dumps" and "Did you ever" (with lines like "Did you eever iver ever in your leaf life loaf/See the devil divil devil kiss his weef wife woaf?"--you owe it to yourself to hear how Maw deals with those words!).

In between are Britten's Corpus Christi Carol (adapted from his choral variations A Boy was Born) and clever version of the madrigal text "Now is the month of maying", Vaughan Williams' lovely setting of a Shakespeare text, Dirge for Fidele, some splendidly written pieces by New London Children's Choir founder/conductor Ronald Corp (the set of Flower Songs, to texts by Robert Herrick, is outstanding), and two song sets by Richard Rodney Bennett--The Aviary (five pieces to texts by Coleridge, Shelley, Tennyson, and John Clare) and The Insect World.

As for the scary stuff, you can't beat Arthur Bliss' masterful setting of Shelley's poem "A widow bird sate mourning" (you can literally hear--and feel--the "frozen wind"!) or Tansy Davies' Oven in the underworld, or John Woolrich's No Hiding Place Down There ("A sinner man sat on the gates of hell..."). Peter Maxwell Davies' Shepherds of Hoy, Bob Chilcott's The lily and the rose, and Philip Godfrey's Day by day (the beloved text by Richard of Chichester) are special highlights that certainly will inspire some choral-director listeners to begin an immediate search for the scores.

With only one exception the music here is absolutely first class, worthy of a choir as well-tuned, technically assured, charismatic, and well-rehearsed as the New London Children's Choir, who bring us more than an hour of uplifting, often unusual, and always memorable singing. The exception, not surprisingly, is John Tavener's Notre Père, which sounds as if dashed off in a few uninspired minutes; however, the choir makes the absolute best of it. My only other reservation concerns the lack of texts in the liner booklet. You have to go online to find them--which wouldn't be so bad if locating the correct page were easier. And not all of the texts are available due to "copyright reasons". But you won't let any of that stop you, because you can't wait to hear this--and you certainly won't be disappointed. Highly recommended!

--David Vernier, ClassicsToday.com
Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Pigs could fly by Howard Skempton
Performer:  Alexander Wells (Piano)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Children's Choir
Period: 20th Century 
2.
Alice is one by Howard Skempton
Performer:  Alexander Wells (Piano)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Children's Choir
Period: 20th Century 
3.
A Boy was Born, Op. 3: Corpus Christi Carol by Benjamin Britten
Performer:  Alexander Wells (Piano)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Children's Choir
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1955/1961; England 
4.
Give to my eyes Lord by Ronald Corp
Performer:  Alexander Wells (Piano)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Children's Choir
Period: 20th Century 
5.
The Aviary by Richard Rodney Bennett
Performer:  Alexander Wells (Piano)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Children's Choir
Period: 20th Century 
6.
The Lord's Prayer by John Tavener
Performer:  Alexander Wells (Piano)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Children's Choir
Period: 20th Century 
Written: England 
7.
Dirge for Fidele by Ralph Vaughan Williams
Performer:  Alexander Wells (Piano)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Children's Choir
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1922; England 
8.
Shepherds of Hoy by Peter Maxwell Davies
Performer:  Alexander Wells (Piano)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Children's Choir
Period: 20th Century 
9.
The lily and the rose by Robert Chilcott
Performer:  Alexander Wells (Piano)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Children's Choir
Period: 20th Century 
10.
May by Benjamin Britten
Performer:  Alexander Wells (Piano)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Children's Choir
Period: 20th Century 
11.
Flower Songs (5) by Ronald Corp
Performer:  Alexander Wells (Piano)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Children's Choir
Period: 20th Century 
12.
Oven in the underworld by Tansy Davies
Performer:  Alexander Wells (Piano)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Children's Choir
Period: 20th Century 
13.
No hiding place down there by John Woolrich
Performer:  Alexander Wells (Piano)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Children's Choir
Period: 20th Century 
14.
For the beauty of the earth by John Rutter
Performer:  Alexander Wells (Piano)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Children's Choir
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1980; England 
15.
Spring by Ronald Corp
Performer:  Alexander Wells (Piano)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Children's Choir
Period: 20th Century 
16.
The insect world by Richard Rodney Bennett
Performer:  Alexander Wells (Piano)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Children's Choir
Period: 20th Century 
17.
At day-close in November by Ronald Corp
Performer:  Alexander Wells (Piano)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Children's Choir
Period: 20th Century 
18.
Day by day by Philip Godfrey
Performer:  Alexander Wells (Piano)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Children's Choir
Period: 20th Century 
19.
Calico pie by Nicholas Maw
Performer:  Alexander Wells (Piano)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Children's Choir
Period: 20th Century 
20.
A widow bird sate mourning by Sir Arthur Bliss
Performer:  Alexander Wells (Piano)
Conductor:  Ronald Corp
Orchestra/Ensemble:  New London Children's Choir
Period: 20th Century 

Sound Samples

Pigs could Fly
Alice is One
Corpus Christi Carol
Give to my eyes, Lord
The Aviary: No. 1. The bird's lament
The Aviary: No. 2. The owl
The Aviary: No. 3. The early nightingale
The Aviary: No. 4. The widow bird
The Aviary: No. 5. The lark
Notre Pere
Dirge for Fidele
Shepherds of Hoy
The lily and the rose
May
Flower Songs: No. 1. To Daffodils
Flower Songs: No. 3. The Primrose
Flower Songs: No. 4. To Daisies
A widow bird sate mourning
Oven in the underworld
No hiding place down there
For the Beauty of the Earth: For the beauty of the earth
Spring
The Insect World: I.
The Insect World: III. Glow-worms
The Insect World: IV. Clock-a-clay
At day-close in November
Day by day
Calico Pie: The Cheetie Poussie-Cattie, O
Calico Pie: Nebuchadnezzar
Calico Pie: The goose and the gander
Calico Pie: Did you ever

Customer Reviews

Be the first to review this title
Review This Title
Review This Title Share on Facebook




YOU MUST BE A SUBSCRIBER TO LISTEN TO ARKIVMUSIC STREAMING.
TRY IT NOW FOR FREE!
Sign up now for two weeks of free access to the world's best classical music collection. Keep listening for only $19.95/month - thousands of classical albums for the price of one! Learn more about ArkivMusic Streaming
Aleady a subscriber? Sign In