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Hyperion Records

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At the Piano by Robert Beyschlag (1838-1903)
Anthony Mitchell Paintings, Nottingham / Fine Art Photographic Library, London
Track(s) taken from CDA67374
Recording details: January 2002
Champs Hill, West Sussex, United Kingdom
Produced by Mark Brown
Engineered by Julian Millard
Release date: June 2003
Total duration: 2 minutes 55 seconds

'Other singers over recent decades have given the songs an airing from time to time, but Thomas Allen is the very man to do it' (Gramophone)

'With piano-playing by that most sensitive of accompanists, Malcolm Martineau, Sir Thomas Allen brings high art to these songs … with an affectionate regard to mood and feeling, and with a touching lyrical sincerity' (The Daily Telegraph)

'A fitting tribute to this repertory that one of the finest operatic voices of our day has chosen to record it' (Classic FM Magazine)

'I must confess that, what with the beauty of Thomas Allen’s voice and the lovely accompaniment of Malcolm Martineau at the piano, a tear welled in my eye more than once. Another distinguished release from Hyperion' (Liverpool Daily Post)

'Hyperion here brings us Sir Thomas Allen caressing 29 well-loved parlour songs with his warm, expressive baritone … Malcolm Martineau provides his usual sympathetic and well-etched pianistic support' (Birmingham Post)

'what quality of nostalgia, and what depth of conviction … Superb performances … Martineau’s carefully moulded accompaniments enhance a glorious enterprise' (Yorkshire Post)

Yes! let me like a soldier fall
composer
1845
author of text

Introduction
Some of the ballads most popular in Victorian drawing-rooms were extracted from the peculiarly British form of ballad opera. One of the classic ballad operas was Maritana, produced at Drury Lane Theatre, London, in 1845. Its several highly successful individual numbers include ‘Yes! Let me like a soldier fall’ for the opera’s hero, Don Caesar. The book of the opera was by Edward Fitzball (né Ball), who was born in Burwell, Cambridgeshire, and became a prolific dramatist after acquiring a taste for the theatre during a youthful visit to Norwich. The composer, William Vincent Wallace, was born in Waterford and died in the Pyrenees. In between he travelled across the world as violinist and pianist and acquired a reputation as an adventurer. It was Maritana that gave him renown as composer; but he never repeated its success.

from notes by Andrew Lamb 2003

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