The supremely talented Ms. Guthrie was joined by bass-baritone Tyler Simpson for the scene from Goethe's Faust in which an evil spirit does everything in his power to intimidate poor Gretchen; Mr Simpson's large sound was produced in an admirably effortless manner. He demonstrated comfort in his higher register in a subsequent song.
Soprano Mary Feminear used her agile voice and charming manner to good advantage in "Wer kauft Liebesgötter" and "Der Fischer", two lied we hope to hear again at some point. The long strophic tale of "Der Gott und die Bajadere" also made a fine impression, reminding us of what a fine storyteller Goethe is. Baritone Benjamin Bloomfield gave a powerful reading of "An Schwager Kronos" and shone as the defiant "Prometheus"; he is also capable of harnessing this power for some beautiful pianissimo singing. We further enjoyed the sweet countertenor of John Holiday who sang "Geistes-Gruss", "Trost in Tränen", and Meeresstille".
As usual the pianism of Artistic Directors Lachlan Glen and Jonathan Ware was exemplary. We particularly enjoyed Mr. Ware in "Lied der Anne Lyle" and Mr. Glen's "Ganymed" in which we distinctly heard the nightingale call.
Again, we commend these artists for their total commitment to bringing over 600 Schubert lieder to life. More to come!
(c) meche kroop