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Track(s) taken from CDA67888

The Devout Lover

First line:
It is not mine to sing the stately grace
composer
1884
author of text
published in 1882 in Songs and Rhymes

Alice Coote (mezzo-soprano), Graham Johnson (piano)
Recording details: December 2010
All Saints' Church, East Finchley, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Mark Brown
Engineered by Julian Millard
Release date: February 2012
Total duration: 4 minutes 11 seconds

Cover artwork: naturally evolving (2009) by Mark Coote (b1932)
Reproduced by kind permission of the artist
 
1

Other recordings available for download

Anthony Rolfe Johnson (tenor), Graham Johnson (piano)
In The Devout Lover, a work exactly contemporary with Love’s old sweet song, White composed a hit that took the music-making world of late Victorian England by storm. With its quixotically elongated phrases, its gallant cadences and its marvellous melody, it is easy to see why. The almost continual rubato demanded of this music recalls the style of Elgar (only two years younger), whose favourite marking of nobilmente would have perfectly suited much of White’s music. The lyric suggests a seventeenth-century courtier of Herrick’s generation, or a Restoration dandy, but it is in fact by Walter Herries Pollock (1850–1926), well-known Victorian man of letters (a Jane Austen authority and editor of the Saturday Review) and equally famous amateur fencer. The poem was published in Songs and Rhymes in 1882. The extent of the song’s popularity in the drawing room is shown by a drawing from Punch (from a series entitled ‘Songs and their Singers’) where the title is amusingly mismatched with a depiction of an imaginary performer.

from notes by Graham Johnson 2012

Other albums featuring this work

In praise of Woman
CDH55159
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