Melba Recordings

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Arcadia Lost

10/12/2011
Courier Mail (Australia)
Patricia Kelly
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Arcadian myths inhabit this CD, from idyllic shepherds in love to shattered dreams represented in classical Roman poet Virgil’s tale that flourished through renaissance culture into our own times, and inspires this CD. The Lark Ascending by Ralph Vaughan Williams must be almost every violinist’s dream, and Michael Dauth follows the soaring bird exquisitely, with Sydney Symphony Orchestra conducted by Mark Wigglesworth creating an empathetic sound world. Vaughan Williams used sensual biblical images for Flos Campi (Flower of the Field) featuring SSO, Roger Benedict (viola) and Cantillation. The foreboding increases in On Wenlock Edge. Tenor Steve Davislim, Hamer Quartet and pianist Benjamin Martin capture the ironic beauty of A. E. Housman’s poems of love and death in this song cycle, after Wigglesworth steered SSO down harrowing paths in Sinfonia da Requiem, Benjamin Britten’s1939 commission for the 2,600th anniversary of Japan`s imperial dynasty. It became instead a lament for his parents’ deaths.