Wednesday, 10 July 2013

Sea Pictures

I came upon this recording by Janet Baker, b. 1933 of the famous composition Sea Pictures of Sir Edward Elgar. Many people will love other singers but to me Baker has a clear voice and diction, making her singing so enjoyable. Elgar had a style all is own, imperial perhaps, full of confidence in his country and in the institutions which represented Britain in July 1899, when all seemed eternal. We just live in a very different world, this composition is beautiful, an historical piece.

This song cycle Sea Pictures consist of 5 songs based on the works of several poets.

Here The Swimmer poem by Adam Lindsay Gordon (1833-1870).

Some of the words of the poem of The Swimmer

The skies were fairer, the shores were firmer
So, girt with tempest and winged with thunder
And strong winds treading the swift waves under
To gulfs foreshadowed through strifes forbidden
Where no light wearies and no loves wanes

1 comment:

  1. Of course I only find Elgar imperial and assured when the occasion demands it.So much in the orchestral works is the soul of volatility and sadness.

    Can't beat Dame Granite in those songs, though.