Music and Reviews from Clare, Limerick, Waterford and sometimes further afield

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Irish Songmakers presents Cara O Sullivan at NCH

Per la gloria d'adoravi Bononcini 1625?-1750
Amarilli mia bella       Giulio Caccini 1546-1618
O del mio dolce ardor  Gluck               1714-1787
Hark the Echoing Air              Purcell  1659-1695
Music for a While 
Sweeter than Roses
I Know Where I'm Goin           Hughs 1882-1937
The Gartlan Mother's Lullaby
The Spanish Lady 
Displaying photo.JPGCuatro Madrigales Amatorios  Joaquin Rodrigo 1901-1999
Dream Valley    Roger Quilter  1877-1953
Weep No More Sad Fountains 
Love's Philosophy
Toselli's Serenade
Someone is sending me Flowers Shoestring Revue Harnick /Baker arr Roger Vignoles

It is 25 years since she won the RTE Musician of the Future, Cara O Sullivan reminded her audience at the John Field Room yesterday .  In her preamble, the soprano painted a picture of   a timid ingenue gently propelled onto the NCH stage by host Mike Murphy, unused to the big stage and orchestra. It was hard to imagine the Cork diva as anything other than a fearless performer who  imbued her song recital  at a packed John Field Room with the spirit of a  hooley in the kitchen.
The diverse programme spanned centuries and took in a number of genres. Opening with an attractive clutch of Baroque arias, she showed off the gorgeous rich velvety tone that has earned her success. My favourite of the set was  Caccini's, Amarilli mia bella,  sensitively  delivered with a subtle range of dynamic.  Next a Purcell set, some of which was not quite tamed yet, work in progress as the diva remarked herself.  Pianist Niall Kinsella did full justice to Hugh's clever arrangements of familiar  Irish folksongs.

Rodrigo's attractive Spanish songs were unfamiliar to me and suited O Sullivan's warm rich timbre very well.   A cabaret number , Someone is sending me flowers from The Shoestring Revue showed off her flair for comic timing .

The event was presented by Irish Songmakers' an inititaive of Niall Kinsella, who acted as impressario and musician  for the occasion. It is good to see a young performer showing such entrepreneurial flair . There is a good demand for daytime, shorter events I believe. There were many singers in the audience to support one of their tribe. It would have been good to have had texts and translations for the foreign language numbers and a solo spot on piano here and there would have not gone amiss and served to give   the vocalist some respite during an intense programme.

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