Despite and Still: Melissa Fogarty Sings Samuel Barber
Melissa Fogarty, soprano; Marc Peloquin, piano
Aureole Records CD
Soprano Melissa Fogarty has an excellent voice, well-suited to interpret the songs of Samuel Barber. Her instrument possesses both the required flexibility for melismatic writing and a sumptuous legato tone for the creamy lyricism of Barber in balladic mode. On Despite and Still, Fogarty performs some of the more famous selections from the composer’s song repertoire – including the perennial favorite “Sure on This Shining Night” and the oft-programmed cycle Hermit Songs: settings of Celtic monks’ verse and marginal annotations.
Fogarty also includes the 1969 set mentioned in the title, and Op. 45, another late group of songs. These reveal a streak of melancholy that one might ascribe to some of the frustrations Barber encountered late in life: the colossal flop of his opera Antony and Cleopatra among them. Or, one might instead just consider this to be a natural stage of autumnal growth for a composer who was a consummate craftsman, fully aware of the importance of varying his oeuvre. Either way, Fogarty sings these pieces quite beautifully, with considerable grace and poignancy.
Melissa Fogarty will celebrate the release of her second solo album, “Despite and Still – Melissa Fogarty Sings Samuel Barber,” on Friday, November 11 at St Luke in the Fields, NYC.
“A Last Song, and a Very Last, and Yet Another,” will feature an all-American song program with less known gems by Barber (such as “Despite and Still”), as well as Leonard Bernstein‘s cycle “I Hate Music!,” and Tom Cipullo‘s cycle “Another Reason I Don’t Keep A Gun in the House,” among others. Pianist Marc Peloquin will accompany Fogarty.
WHEN: Friday, November 11 at 8 P.M.
WHERE: St Luke in the Fields,
487 Hudson Street, New York City
INFORMATION: 212.633.2167 | www.melissafogarty.com