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Hyperion Records

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Track(s) taken from CDA67124
Recording details: October 1999
Rosslyn Hill Unitarian Chapel, Hampstead, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Mark Brown
Engineered by Antony Howell
Release date: June 2000
Total duration: 2 minutes 1 seconds

'Beautifully performed with excellent notes, this recording will convince even the sceptical of the true worth of these songs … a most sensitive performance' (Gramophone)

'Maintains in each and every bar the high standards of the previous release' (BBC Music Magazine)

'This collection, along with its predecessor has changed my life. Without any question, it contains some magnificent songs, settings that would grace any company under the sun … voice and piano are in true partnership. I can only salute with deepest admiration Stephen Varcoe's sterling baritone, so utterly sympathetic to Stanford's every note, so undemonstratively secure, so responsive to word and musical line' (International Record Review)

'Immediately appealing. Stephen Varcoe is the perfect singer for this repertoire. A treasure of a disc' (Fanfare, USA)

Phoebe, Op 125 No 3
First line:
Phoebe sat, sweet she sat
composer
1911
author of text
1520

Introduction
Stanford’s Four Songs Op 125 were completed in February 1911 and published the same year by Stainer & Bell. They were written for the husband-and-wife partnership of Clara Butt (to whom the first two songs were dedicated) and Robert Kennerley Rumford (the dedicatee of the last two). A setting of Thomas Lodge’s ‘Montanus’ Sonnet’ from Rosalynde: Euphues golden legacie of 1520, Phoebe (the third of the collection) is an attractive lyric whose vocal phrases are shaped and characterised by the poem’s unusual scheme of 3 + 3 + 8 syllables for each line.

from notes by Jeremy Dibble 2000

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