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Track(s) taken from CDA67261/2

If we must part

composer
1929
author of text

Christopher Maltman (baritone), Graham Johnson (piano)
Recording details: September 1998
Rosslyn Hill Unitarian Chapel, Hampstead, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Arthur Johnson
Engineered by Mike Clements & Mike Hatch
Release date: June 1999
Total duration: 1 minutes 51 seconds
 

Reviews

'Perhaps these discs will at last bring the best of his songs back into live recital' (BBC Music Magazine)

'Three excellent young British singers share the treasures recorded here under the sage aegis of Graham Johnson. Lisa Milne's bright, keen soprano is lovely, John Mark Ainsley is a model of style and verbal clarity and young Christopher Maltman continues to show the promise that won him the Cardiff Lieder Prize in 1997' (The Sunday Times)

'A welcome, long overdue event. Excellent introduction to unduly neglected repertoire' (Classic CD)

'Ireland was a songsmith to rival the finest this country has produced, and Hyperion's generous anthology will hopefully encourage others to explore this rewarding and rapt repertoire' (Hi-Fi News)
If we must part (1929) returns again to the poetry of Ernest Dowson. The theme is a variant on the by now familiar one of friendship … this time, how to say goodbye. Words are useless, displays of emotion too painful. The alternative is very British, very stiff upper lip, very Ireland. Just say 'Until tomorrow or some other day' and leave the rest to silence. Never mind the hurt inside. Another setting. of words by Ernest Dowson, When I am old, seems to date from the 1920s. This only recently came to light when the manuscript turned up in Zürich. It is now lodged with the Syndics of Cambridge University Music Library who have generously facilitated the first recording of this song. The poem is a plea to a loved one to dwell on earlier, happier times when old age comes—the choice of the text by Ireland being evidence perhaps of his morbid fear of growing old. The rich-harmonised setting builds to a heartfelt climax, marked 'passionato', on the repeated words 'My life's one love'.

from notes by Andrew Green © 1999

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