Love and Life

Songs of Life&Love HR (4 of 25)Anne Larlee and Simone Osborne brought their Maureen Forrester recital tour to Toronto today, courtesy of Jeunesses Musicales Canada and the COC’s free lunchtime concert series.  The programme featured works by Bellini, Schumann, Hahn and Richard Strauss plus two specially commissioned pieces from Brian Current.

I particularly enjoyed the Schumann and Strauss pieces.  Simone’s interpretation of the Frauenliebe und -Leben showed a very wide range of emotion and tone colour and exceptionally good German diction.  The three Strauss songs also displayed considerable power.  This was very classy lieder singing.

The Current pieces were interesting and enjoyable too.  Extreme Positions sets a concrete poem about a ménage à trois by bpNichol.  It’s short, fast and furious and rather exciting.  Rather a tour de force by Simone.  Birefringence sets a poem about light by Christian Bök.  It’s a complex piece with a difficult and rather understated vocal line supporting a highly virtuosic piano part played beautifully by Anne.  These are both pieces I would love to hear again and thanks are due to the Canadian Art Song project for commissioning them.

Songs of Life&Love HR (17 of 25)The balance of the programme was also most enjoyable.  I’ve said, possibly too often, that Simone has a lovely voice but what really came over today was stage presence and what can, I think, only be called “star quality”.  She really is a remarkable young singer.  This programme is going to many smaller centres in Ontario and Quebec (as well as Montreal) between now and December 8th.  Catch it if you can.

Photo credits: Tim Flynn

2 thoughts on “Love and Life

  1. Pingback: Faster Still Anaïs Nin | operaramblings

  2. An oldie but. . . a wonderful short review. And I learned something new in connection with a favourite artist, bpNichol: the Current piece based Extreme Positions sounds like a real treat worth looking for.

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