Four Song Cycles


Four Song Cycles


Track Listing:

[1] The Hour Hand, Op. 101, for soprano and recorder [2] Shropshire Hills, Op. 155, for high voice and piano [3] Improvisation, Op. 120, for recorder and piano [4] Kontakion, Op. 69, for cello and piano [5] The Rose is Shaken in the Wind, Op. 137, for soprano and recorder [6] Six Poems by Emily Brontë, Op. 63, for soprano and piano

Performed by Lesley-Jane Rogers, soprano; John Turner, recorder; Richard Tunnicliffe, cello; John McCabe, piano.

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The music of John Joubert – born in 1927 in Cape Town, a student at the Royal Academy of Music in London in the 1940s and ’50s, and Birmingham-based since 1962 – has a strong sense of melody, his beguiling lyricism combining with an acute sensitivity to words to produce songs that are both colourful and evocative. These four song-cycles pay tribute to the places and poets that inspired them. And his chamberworks, drawing on a rich instrumental palette and haunting melodic lines, are memorable and dramatically effective. Recorded in the presence of the composer.  


"Many people are familiar with at least one of Joubert’s miniatures – his carol ‘Torches’, which they probably sang at school – but are unlikely to know these song cycles, which have been recorded by the imaginative Toccata label to mark his 80th birthday. They burst with his characteristic melodic inventiveness and vivid word setting and are beautifully captured here by Lesley-Jane Rogers. Chamber pieces are also included, with John McCabe, who has long championed Joubert’s work, in fine form at the keyboard." - Stephen Pritchard, The Observer