GETTY: The Canterville Ghost (Oprera
in One At).
MAHLER: Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen. Rücker-Lieder. Kindertotenlieder.
LOS ANGELES PERCUSSION QUARTET
Gordon Gettys latest venture into opera is a setting of Oscar Wilde's comic novella about the The Canterville Ghos, about a castle purchased by the American Otis family. The castle is haunted by the Ghost of a nobleman, Sir Simon, who three centuries earlier had murdered his wife and had been starved to death. Since that time, he has haunted the castle. He is a comic character, and tries to tries to frighten the family but they are not scared, regardless of the many forms in which he appears. The role on stage is a feast for a great actor; you can find a video featuring Charles Laughton This performance was recorded June 2015 at Opera Leipzig and is excellent in every way. Getty shoud be admired for his considerable support of music and musicians. This opera surely is a pleasant experience, but hardly memorable. A complete synopsis is provided and the text as well, which is mostly based on Wilde's original. As usual with Pentatone, audio is first-rate, if not particulary "surround."
Mezzo-soprano Alice Coote for some years has been considered among the finest voices for music of Gustav Maher. Pavo Järvi chose her for his recordings of Mahler symphonies, and she was featured on a rtecent Pentatonee Marc Albrecht conducted Das Lied von der Erdewas prised on this site (REVIEW). Now we have this dick of three major Mahler song cycles, sung with consummate beauty and understnding. A plus is the rich contribution of the superb Dutch orchestra directed again by Marc Albrecht. This is a fine additionto the Mahler discography. There are profuse program notes but, unfortunatey, no texts or translations.
During its six-year history, the Los Angeles Percussion Quartet has gained a solid reputation as an ensemble of virtuoso players who focus on new music particularly by composers from California. Members of the quartet are Matt Cook, Justin DeHart, Nick Terry, and Cory Hills. Music of Daníel Bjarnason, originally from Iceland. opens the program, Qui Tollis. which has a performance time of 9:48. The shortest piece ( 6:13) is by Anna Thorvaldsdottir. Christopher Cerrone's Memory Palace has five sections: Harriman (2:19), Power Lines (4:54), Forhurst(5:04), L.I.E. (4:23), and Claremont (4:23). Ellen Reid's well-named Fear-Release is 8:47. The major work is Andrew McIntosh's I Hold the Lion's Paw, which has 9 sections, each individually tracked, with a total performance time of 39:51. All of this is, to say the least, provocative, challenging listening. The recordings were made at Sono Luminis Studios in Boyce, Virginia, March 20 - 24, 2016. Engineers have captured the wide range of sounds perfectly. All of this music is worthy of investigation, and it is presented here in sonic purity. The LAPQ can be seen on YouTube; check that first.
R.E.B. (July 2017)