Baritone Gerald Finley's generous selection of Barber's songs includes two of his most familiar cycles, 11 individual songs, and Dover Beach, for baritone and string quartet. The songs all come from Barber's early period and range from "There is nae Lark," written when he was 17, to the Hermit Songs of 1953. Finley doesn't have a huge voice, but he can deliver plenty of power when required, and he has an appealing warmth and ease. His delivery is refreshingly free and unmannered, and it is ideally suited to the directness of Barber's songs. He shows wonderful sensitivity to the texts and makes even the most overdone songs, such as "The Daisies," sound convincing and newly imagined. The Hermit Songs are sung almost exclusively by women, perhaps because of the tradition that Barber established when he gave the premiere performance accompanying Leontyne Price, whose recording remains a gold standard. The texts, mostly written by Medieval Irish monks, largely reflect a male perspective, and Finley's fine performance ought to give courage to more men to take up the cycle.
John Adams’ 2005 opera explores the personal and moral issues surrounding the invention of the atomic bomb. Captured live in concert, it has colossal power and conviction. At its center is Gerald Finley’s commanding performance as Robert Oppenheimer, a scientist wracked by doubts. Having sung it at the premiere and many times since, he produces a magnificently characterized creation. Julia Bullock, Brindley Sherratt, Samuel Sakker, and Andrew Staples are all superb in supporting roles and Adams himself draws virtuoso playing from a truly galvanized BBC Symphony Orchestra. A major recording of a modern operatic classic.
La réalité est pourtant tout autre que celle enseignée dans les livres scolaires. Seuls les amateurs de l'imagerie d'Epinal pourraient croire encore que "la petite bergère" qui entendit des voix sut revêtir une armure le jour même de son arrivée à Chinon, chez le Dauphin Charles, et défaire le duc d'Alençon en tournoi singulier. Elle était en réalité la demi-soeur de Charles VII. La falsification des documents officiels a été démontrée. Gerald Messadié, réputé pour son esprit iconoclaste, a reconstitué la véritable histoire de ce personnage hors du commun, car l'admiration pour l'héroïne n'exclut aucunement la recherche historique. …
Garcia’s best-known work for guitar is his Études Esquisses, a set of sketches or studies that gradually grew to include a varied set of 25 pieces with titles that indicate their origin or purpose. The work concludes with a series of ‘Hommages’ – to Villa-Lobos, Lauro, Rodrigo and Piazzolla. His Celtic Airs, originally for guitar and flute, were reworked in 1994. The spirit of the Outer Hebrides and of Ireland is evoked.