Mela Dailey, soprano; Scott Kluksdahl, cello; Rick
albums featuring young sopranos are not uncommon. But what makes this new
release exceptional is the unusual choice of repertoire and the high quality of
have thought of putting together an album of contemporary music for soprano and
cello? And who would have thought that the music for this combination could be
of such high quality?
Previn’s Four Songs for Soprano, Cello
and Piano of 1994 are settings of poems by Toni Morrison. These are
beautiful songs, recalling Britten in their transparency, and Previn has
captured the essence of Morrison’s heartfelt expression of the black
experience. One of these songs is called “Shelter”, hence the title of the
the CD Mela Dailey sings with wonderful purity and control and Scott Kluksdahl
supports her with playing of richness and nobility. The combination is
especially successful in John Tavener’s Akhmatova
Songs, dating from 1993. The poems are preoccupied with death and manage to
be deeply probing in a few words.
The CD opens
and closes with a vocalise, the first by Previn and the second the very
familiar one by Rachmaninov but in a fresh new version for soprano, cello and
piano by conductor – and Mela Dailey’s husband - Peter Bay.
Labels: Mela Dailey, product_review, Rick Rowley, Scott Kluksdahl