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Graduate recital in voice
The songs presented here, whether by well-known or obscure composers, are, for the most part, less familiar. However, each is intrinsically attractive, musically valid, and of more than just historical interest. Monteverdi's Scherzi Musicali (1632) consists of miscellaneous earlier pieces in a light vein. Strophic songs utilizing solo voice and basso continuo are presented on the program. "Ecco di dolci raggi" is incomplete in this publication. It appears in an earlier collection with five strophes. "Eilt, Ihr stunden, kommt herbei" is from Bach's 1738 cantata for the midsummer feast of St. John the Baptist. The constant movement and violin-voice duet bring to mind the style of A. Scarlatti. Wolf's Spanisches Liederbuch was composed in 1889-90, using German translations of Spanish poetry. There is some attempt at Spanish flavor, particularly in "Sagt, seid Ihr es," but these songs are primarily Wolf's Germanic response to the texts. Debussy's works are the epitome of the Impressionistic style, as these songs illustrate. "L'Echelonnement des Haies" and "La Mer est plus belle" are views of England by Paul Verlaine. The other two songs use sentimental poems by Paul Bourget. Rainier's Three Greek Epigrams, from the Greek of Anyte of Tegea, were composed in 1937. They feature bold rhythms, ostinato passages, block sonorities, use of the augmented fourth, and a vocal line of often instrumental character. The Spanish songs by Guridi and Nin are based on folk forms and melodies. Their charm lies in the unusual rhythms and unexpected harmonic twists, together with pervasive guitar idioms. As a whole, this recital displays various facets of musical art through the centuries, but all with a common goal: the sincere expression of beauty.