The skill and splendor of his music belies the relatively brief number of years he has committed pen to paper to create a considerable oeuvre of orchestral, chamber and choral music.At That Hour is a superlative showcase for Henrys craftmanship as well as his close collaborators, husband-and-wife team soprano Danielle Talamantes and bass-baritone Kerry Wilkerson.
Ten Poems of James Joyce
1. 'At That Hour When All Things Have Repose' (3.47)
2. 'Bahnhofstrasse' (4.22)
3. 'On the Beach at Fontana' (3.36)
4. 'Simples' (2.21)
5. 'Alone' (3.18)
6. 'Flood' (2.13)
7. 'Strings in the Earth and Air' (3.25)
8. 'Night Piece' (2.49)
9. 'Tutto è sciolto' (2.04)
10. 'A Memory of the Player in the Mirror at Midnight' (3.09)
11. 'Questa fiamma' (T.S. Eliot) (3.01)
12. 'Amore e ‘l cor gentil sono una cosa' (Dante) (3.51)
13. 'A Dream' (Edgar Allen Poe) (2.10)
14. 'The Mount' (Mark Riddles) (5.53)
15. 'Fragrance' (Mark Riddles) (5.37)
16. 'Shir Hashirim' (Biblical Hebrew) (8.15)
17. 'Requiescat' (Oscar Wilde) (3.26)
All of the songs on this original album of Henrys art songs were written expressly for Danielle's and Kerry's impassioned voices with the formers empoweringly sung, emotively ornate title track opening Henry's 10-part song cycle set to texts by James Joyce.
'Bahnhofstrasse' brings forth Kerry's bass-baritone, with Danielle back for the gently frenetic 'On the Beach at Fontana,' the wholehearted 'Simples' (Kerry), the stoically reaching 'Alone' (Danielle), and then we get the completely uproarious 'Flood' (Kerry).
The vocal trade off now stops as Danielle takes lead on both the flutteringly vibrant 'Strings in the Air and Earth' and the erstwhile 'Night Piece,' with Kerry coming back in for the throaty pairing of 'Tutto è sciolto' and 'A Memory of the Players in a Mirror at Midnight.'
Although adapted from the poem by T.S. Eliot, Dante Alighieri's 'Questa fiamma' is brought to life by Danielle, with Kerry adding his bass undertone to the duet 'Amore e ‘l cor gentil sono una cosa' thereafter, and that's backed by Edgar Allan Poe's 'A Dream' (Kerry), and a pairing from Danielle of Mark Riddles' hardened keys of 'The Mount,' followed by the soaringly ethereal 'Fragrance.'
The Hebrew writings of Song Of Songs is next brought forth by Kerry in the near-nine minute 'Shir Hashirim,' with the euphoric musical and vocal majesty of 'Requiescat' from Kerry bringing the album to a magnificent close.
In closing, and as much as inspiration for these songs obviously comes from poetry and texts by T.S. Eliot, Dante, Edgar Allen Poe, Oscar Wilde, and the others mentioned, throughout, Henry's modern yet tonal compositional voice shines through as he renders a diverse palette of musical styles to amplify the words he sets to music.
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