Emma Kirkby Collection

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Emma Kirkby Collection

  • Selva morale e spirituale, Confitebor tibi, Domine (5vv/1v, instr)
  • Voglio di vita uscir
  • Scherzi musicali, Maledetto sia l'aspetto
  • Scherzi musicali, Quel sguardo sdegnosetto
  • Le musiche V, Questo dardo, quest'arco
  • Le musiche I, Piangono al pianger mio (wds. Rinuccini)
  • Cantata No. 208, 'Was mir behagt, ist nur die munt, Aria: Schafe können sicher weiden (Sheep may safely graze)
  • Cantata No. 202, 'Weichet nur, betrübte Schatten, Aria: Sich üben im Lieben (S)
  • Now hath Flora robb'd her bower
  • Move now with measured sound
  • You meaner beauties of the night
  • Stript of their green our groves appear
  • Foy porter, honneur garder
  • (The) Third and Last Book of Songs or Aires, Time stands still
  • (The) Third and Last Book of Songs or Aires, Flow not so fast ye fountaines
  • Columba aspexit per cancellos
  • (The) Lark
  • (The) Triumph of Time and Truth, Sharp thorns despising
  • Selva morale e spirituale, Confitebor tibi, Domine (5vv/1v, instr)
  • Voglio di vita uscir
  • Scherzi musicali, Maledetto sia l'aspetto
  • Scherzi musicali, Quel sguardo sdegnosetto
  • Le musiche V, Questo dardo, quest'arco
  • Le musiche I, Piangono al pianger mio (wds. Rinuccini)
  • Cantata No. 208, 'Was mir behagt, ist nur die munt, Aria: Schafe können sicher weiden (Sheep may safely graze)
  • Cantata No. 202, 'Weichet nur, betrübte Schatten, Aria: Sich üben im Lieben (S)
  • Now hath Flora robb'd her bower
  • Move now with measured sound
  • You meaner beauties of the night
  • Stript of their green our groves appear
  • Foy porter, honneur garder
  • (The) Third and Last Book of Songs or Aires, Time stands still
  • (The) Third and Last Book of Songs or Aires, Flow not so fast ye fountaines
  • Columba aspexit per cancellos
  • (The) Lark
  • (The) Triumph of Time and Truth, Sharp thorns despising

In some musical circles it is still de rigueur to refer to approved female singers by the Christian name. Whether personal friends or not, Victoria and Janet, Eva and Maria are household familiars. Nowadays (such is fame) nobody acknowledges the divine Emmy (Destinn), but all respond without doubt or delay to 'Emma'. And here she is, duly celebrated in a collection which none of the grandes dames alluded to above could quite emulate. She sings in a repertoire so old that it is almost entirely fresh, and in a way that has all the assurance and accomplishment of the professional while retaining the modest scale and style of the amateur.
Perhaps Sigismondo d'India's distraught plaintiff in Piangono al pianger mio needs a little more full-bodied passion. Maybe Monteverdi's girl who sings in such lively rhythms of her wish to die (Voglio di vita uscir) could do with a stronger thrust, a fuller reserve of power. There are times when, even in less ardent music, one wishes that the every-present charm would give way to something more disturbed and disturbing. Yet nothing could be more touching in its restrained sadness than her singing of Dowland's Flow not so fast, ye fountains, just as the virtuosity of the opening Confitebor of Monteverdi radiates an affirmative joy in which there is nothing merely bland. That, with The Parley of Instruments accompanying, was taken from the first record she made for Hyperion. The other extracts, all from the Hyperion catalogue, include some from Bach's Wedding and Hunt Cantatas (the sheep grazing very briskly indeed) and from Handel's The Triumph of Time and Truth. Best, perhaps, is the unaccompanied vire-lai Foy porter (Machaut) from ''The Mirror Of Narcissus'', beautifully phrased and pointed, crystal clear and confident in its delight, a lovely example of the singer's art.'

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