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Britten: Serenade For Tenor, Etc / Bedford, Et Al

Release Date: 02/22/2005 
Label:  Naxos   Catalog #: 8557199   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Benjamin Britten
Performer:  Frank LloydPhilip LangridgeAnn Murray
Conductor:  Steuart Bedford
Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Chamber OrchestraNorthern Sinfonia
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 4 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

As long as the Pears/Britten recordings of the Serenade are around (especially the more mature, radiant, better-sounding second effort with hornist Barry Tuckwell), all others will remain supplemental choices. But if you're looking for a great supplemental choice, this one, another of Naxos' reissues from the Collins Classics catalog, should be it. Tenor Philip Langridge is a consistently involving, technically solid interpreter of Britten's songs who, for better or worse, truly follows Pears' expressive lead, and even resembles the legendary tenor in vocal timbre and in nuances of color, but without quite the rich throaty character that Pears often displayed. Langridge is especially impressive in the dramatic range he commands in the very Read more difficult leaps and subtle shifts of shade and dynamics in the Nocturne's "Below the thunders of the upper deep..."--and this vocal and interpretive control carries throughout this virtuoso work. Ann Murray's Phaedra is a thoughtful, sensitively executed performance, clear-voiced and articulate, with superb support from conductor Steuart Bedford and his English Chamber Orchestra. The other solo instrumentalists--particularly hornist Frank Lloyd in the Serenade--are first rate, and, as usual with these Collins productions, the sound is excellent. [2/11/2005]

--David Vernier, ClassicsToday.com Read less

Works on This Recording

Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings, Op. 31 by Benjamin Britten
Performer:  Frank Lloyd (French Horn), Philip Langridge (Tenor)
Conductor:  Steuart Bedford
Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Chamber Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1943; England 
Nocturne, Op. 60 by Benjamin Britten
Performer:  Philip Langridge (Tenor)
Conductor:  Steuart Bedford
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Northern Sinfonia
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1958; England 
Phaedra, Op. 93 by Benjamin Britten
Performer:  Ann Murray (Mezzo Soprano)
Conductor:  Steuart Bedford
Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Chamber Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1975; England 

Sound Samples

Serenade, Op. 31: Prologue
Serenade, Op. 31: Pastoral
Serenade, Op. 31: Nocturne
Serenade, Op. 31: Elegy
Serenade, Op. 31: Dirge
Serenade, Op. 31: Hymn
Serenade, Op. 31: Sonnet
Serenade, Op. 31: Epilogue (off stage)
Nocturne, Op. 60: On a poet's lips I slept
Nocturne, Op. 60: Below the thunders of the upper deep
Nocturne, Op. 60: Encintured with a twine of leaves
Nocturne, Op. 60: Midnight's bell goes ting, ting, ting, ting
Nocturne, Op. 60: But that night when on my bed I lay
Nocturne, Op. 60: She sleeps on soft, last breaths; but no ghost looms
Nocturne, Op. 60: What is more gentle than a wind in summer?
Nocturne, Op. 60: When most I wink, then do mine eyes best see
Phaedra, Op. 93: Prologue - In May, in brilliant Athens
Phaedra, Op. 93: My lost and dazzled eyes
Phaedra, Op. 93: Venus resigned her altar to my new Lord
Phaedra, Op. 93: Phaedra in all her madness stands before you
Phaedra, Op. 93: The wife of Theseus loves Hippolytus
Phaedra, Op. 93: Oh Gods of wrath
Phaedra, Op. 93: Death to the unhappy's no catastrophe
Phaedra, Op. 93: My time's too short, your highness
Phaedra, Op. 93: Chills already dart along my boiling veins

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