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Song to the witch of the cloisters

First line:
Old lady in the herb garden
author of text

John Corigliano is one of America’s leading composers today. His opera The Ghosts of Versailles, which he wrote with librettist William M Hoffman, scored a huge success at its Metropolitan Opera premiere in 1990. John is a lifelong friend. When he wrote his song cycle The Cloisters with Hoffman in 1967 he dedicated Song to the Witch of The Cloisters to me. It is a thrilling piece to sing because it is based on a real-life—somewhat mysterious—lady who used to roam about the Fort Tryon Park gardens of The Cloisters, located in upper Manhattan. Bill Hoffman’s fantasy had her culling poisonous herbs for nefarious purposes. I have never had the courage to ask John what I might have done to deserve such an honour…

from notes by Robert White © 1997


Sure on this shining night
CDA66920Archive Service


Track 7 on CDA66920 [2'56] Archive Service

Track-specific metadata for CDA66920 track 7

Recording date
31 July 1996
Recording venue
All Saints' Church, East Finchley, London, United Kingdom
Recording producer
Mark Brown
Recording engineer
Julian Millard
Hyperion usage
  1. Sure on this shining night (CDA66920)
    Disc 1 Track 7
    Release date: April 1997
    Deletion date: August 2018
    Archive Service
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