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Both song-cycles Six Songs and The Light of the Lotus have oriental themes. Six Songs uses a series of texts taken from Chinese poetry and The Light of the Lotus is described as 'love songs of Japan'. This latter work is the more consciously oriental of the two [listen -- track 17, 0:58-1:33].

The performances, from pianist Ian Munro and soprano Jane Edwards, are excellent. Both bring out the charm and spirit of the music without ever trying to make it something that it is not. Edwards has a lovely soprano voice that suffers only occasionally under pressure.

This is a disc of salon music; but salon music of superior quality. I can recommend it for the music's charm and for Parker's melodic felicity.

Copyright © 24 June 2006 Robert Hugill, London UK


Down Longford Way : The music of Katharine Parker

TP174 DDD Stereo NEW RELEASE 54'30" 2005 Tall Poppies Records

Jane Edwards, soprano; Ian Munro, piano

Katharine Parker (1886-1971): A Water Colour; Nocturne; Six Songs (Yellow's the robe for honour; I am disquieted; The night's before us yet; The willows by the Eastern gate; I wait my Lord; You've two-score, three-score years before you yet); Four Musical Sketches (One Summer Day; A Patchwork of Shadows; Red Admiral; Down Longford Way); As a star; Love ships; Arc-en-Ciel: Valse Ballet; Brushing up the leaves; The light of the lotus: love songs of Japan (My little Samisen; Lotus lanterns; The little dwarf tree); The road to love; Désirée; I don't care; Come, my love


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