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Track(s) taken from CDD22070

I said to Love, Op 19b

collected posthumously by Finzi's executors and first performed by John Carol Case and Howard Ferguson on 27 January 1957
author of text

Stephen Varcoe (baritone), Clifford Benson (piano)
Recording details: December 1984
The New Concert Hall, University of South Wales, Cardiff,
Produced by Mark Brown
Engineered by Antony Howell
Release date: January 1990
Total duration: 12 minutes 33 seconds

Cover artwork: Derwent Fells and Newlands Valley, Cumbria.
Photograph by Norman Feakins / Power Pix

I said to Love was gathered and grouped, after Finzi’s premature death, by his executors. Three songs date from Finzi’s last year. ‘At Middle-Field Gate’ shows a welcome extension of his harmonic range, but, like ‘In five-score summers’, it ends in Hardy’s gloomy vein. The last two songs are more astringent. The resolution of ‘For Life I had never cared greatly’ is carried lightly. For ‘I said to Love’ Finzi found an unusual vigour and defiance which—though apparently contradicting Hardy’s words ‘We are too old in apathy!’—strike absolutely to the underlying mood of the poem. After the first performance by John Carol Case and Howard Ferguson on 27 January 1957, Vaughan Williams wrote: ‘As regards Gerald’s new songs, the first and the last hit the nail in my head right away.’

from notes by Diana McVeagh © 1989
Diana McVeagh’s Gerald Finzi: His Life and Music is published by Boydell & Brewer, Woodbridge

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