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Chris Morgan
Scene Magazine, January 2015

…this recording is well programmed and the tracks flow naturally into one another. Performances by pianists Martha Fischer and Lee Hoiby are unimpeachable, while a suite of songs written by the latter musician comprises some the most memorable moments on the disc. A delight. © 2015 Scene Magazine Read complete review



Paul Corfield Godfrey
MusicWeb International, July 2013

…Julia Faulkner’s diction is usually good enough to enable us to distinguish the words. Julia Faulkner’s own note states that she has “simply chosen songs that I love,” and that is amply borne out by her involved and intense performances. Martha Fischer copes admirably with the sometimes quite elaborately conceived accompaniments, and is well placed in the recording. © 2013 MusicWeb International Read complete review



Robert A Moore
American Record Guide, May 2013

The performances are first rate. Faulkner’s commanding voice and probing of text make for riveting listening. Fischer’s accompaniment is commendable, and Hoiby’s deft and nimble accompaniment ensures that we hear the songs as he wanted them heard. If you are interested in songs by important American composers, you will find this most worthwhile. © 2013 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide



David Denton
David's Review Corner, February 2013

Born into a wealthy American family in 1830, Emily Dickinson wrote over 1800 poems, though few were published during her lifetime. She never married and become reclusive in later life, though, by contrast, her poems touched on so many subjects that summed up human life on earth. It was her unique ability to use words that created the uncommon word rhythms that pose problems to those wishing to clothe them in music. Yet composers have been fascinated with their content to such an extent that there is an abundance from which the soprano Julia Faulkner, could choose for this disc. She eventually settled on five groups that link poems of a generic nature. They come from seven American composers working in the 20th century, ending with Lee Hoiby’s group of five songs with the title The Shining Place. Copland has by far the largest share, though I guess that, with the exception of Going to Heaven, most will be little known outside music’s inner circle. Faulkner has certainly not spared herself, the works often exacting on the soprano voice to the point of being unkind. Maybe, as they were written as a cycle, the Hoiby work gave me the greatest satisfaction. Written in 1995, it is a lyric score in the traditions of tonality, the piano commenting graphically on the words. That is a factor that I sometimes miss in Copland where the keyboard is the backdrop rather than the creator. A very interesting release recorded over the period 2007-9, Hoiby, who died in 2011, being the pianist in his own work. © 2013 David’s Review Corner



Andrew Farach-Colton
Gramophone, April 2008

…the Symphony and Transitions have strong, dramatic profiles and make their points with impressive concision. The performances, recorded live, are all thoroughly professional. © 2008 Gramophone Read complete review on Gramophone





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