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Katzer's music is as mightily dramatic as mythology has Medea's danger as a sorceress. The score ingeniously employs reeds, brass, percussion and lower strings, instruments that can be associated with power and oppressive darkness and, though vigorously used in skilful atmospheric contrasts, there are times when the ear would enjoy some light! The colourful effect can be heard in the conflict expressed by the chorus, the women protesting that 'what do you have against her -- she comes to us as a healer' and the men insisting that 'she is a barbarian, a wild woman' [listen -- CD1 track 6, 0:37-1:34].

There are four strong vocal soloists. Peter Klaveness (bass) is Akamas, a people's judge, and Annette Markert (alto) sings the part of Medea, having found the sacrificial cave and touched the skeleton [listen -- CD1 track 8, 0:00-0:58].

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Copyright © 12 October 2003 Patric Standford, Wakefield, UK


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