Does music add substance to words or is music inspired by them? Songs of departure and farewell are deeply rooted in the great tradition of British choral music, nourished by ancient myths of testing journeys, wayside transformations and homecomings. The transcendent nature of music and the power of poetry to challenge and alter perceptions of reality – harnessed by English composers over many centuries – flow through a programme that invites contemplation of life and death, of love and loss, creation and eternity. In a journey covering six centuries of musical history, The Sixteen performs a cappella anthems with powerful texts by writers as varied as Edmund Spenser, Christopher Fry and W.H. Auden.
His face was more famous than his voice, but Robert Goulet recorded a string of popular albums for Columbia during the 1960s, striking the pop charts with several hits and earning a 1962 Grammy Award. Born in 1933 in Lawrence, MA, Goulet was raised in Edmonton, Alberta, where he first studied acting and singing as a teenager. He appeared on Canadian television in the early '50s, but moved to New York and by the end of the decade was fit into a prime Broadway role: Sir Lancelot, in Lerner & Loewe's Camelot (with Julie Andrews and Richard Burton). A starring role in several films proved less than successful, however. He began singing in the early '60s as well, and after an appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show, Goulet signed to Columbia in 1962.
The new solo album of Toyohiko Satoh, the 72 year old Japanese lutenist who is considered my many as one of the most influential lute players of the last century, presents a well-known repertoire of baroque lute music. Mr. Satoh was the first lutenist to record Bach’s lute music on LP in the 70s (Phillips). Now he returns to this music 40 years later, delivering a completely different rendering of these iconic pieces. His playing has been influenced much by his studies of traditional Japanese arts such as tea ceremony, No-theater and Zen meditation. So here we are presented a recording that draws from the deep silence within, from the awareness of everything in the universe being connected, and from the understanding of Bach’s music as a universal, almost superhuman symbol of completeness.