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The Dickinson Songs of Aaron Copland
ISBN 157647092X / 9781576470923 / 1-57647-092-X
Publisher Pendragon Pr
List price $32.00
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There could be no more fitting subject for the opening volume of this endeavor than Copland's Twelve Poems of Emily Dickinson. Long a favorite of performers and audiences alike, this inimitable cycle of art songs created at mid-century by a highly distinctive voice in American music pays tribute to one of America's revered poets, herself a pioneer of "the modern" on her own terms. Prof. Starr convincingly identifies the shared aesthetic affinities of the poet and the composer in spite of the social, artistic, and chronological gaps that separated them and explains the pivotal nature of the work in Copland's output. He then sensitively describes the singular musical solutions devised for each poem, all the while emphasizing the composer's respect for the idiosyncrasies of Dickinson's verse. Commentary on the original version for soprano and piano is supplemented by information on Copland's later orchestrations for selected songs, a discussion of performance and interpretation, and details concerning the work's history on recordings. For the reader's convenience a compact disc with performances of Twelve Poems by Adele Addison with the composer himself at the keyboard and of Eight Poems by Barbara Hendricks and the London Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Michael Tilson Thomas is included with the text. [via]