The fabulous mezzo-soprano, Stephanie Blythe, 2009 Musical America Vocalist of the Year, has allowed us to share her wonderful review of the new Delos release “Love is Everywhere: Selected Songs of Margaret Ruthven Lang”:
“As a long time admirer and singer of art songs, I am always on the lookout for new works, and my acquaintance with tenor Donald George has proven to be a wonderful source of great songs and great singing. Upon hearing “Love is Everywhere” by Margaret Ruthven Lang for the first time, I was struck by the wonderful craft in her songs, and her brilliant ability to set text, the hallmark of a great songwriter. There is a definite German influence in these pieces, but they are extraordinarily original- Ms. Lang most definitely has her own voice. The melodies are lovely, and Ms. Lang has created a beautiful voice in the piano- gorgeous, building lines that sometimes explode with joy, and other times whisper of hope and love. Her charming sense of humor, as evidenced by the Nonsense Rhymes and Pictures is positively darling. There is a great feeling of nostalgia here as well, especially in “An Irish Love Song”. It is no wonder that this song was so popular with so many singers. Bringing this repertoire to the fore, Donald George and his pianist Lucy Mauro, have done a wonderful service to the art of song with this recording- his singing is fresh and beautiful, with immediate diction, and their partnership is palpable throughout the selections. Her playing is as crystalline and telling as his singing. This recording takes the listener on a lovely journey, and I know that my recital repertoire is about to grow by quite a few songs, thanks to the genius of Margaret Ruthven Lang.”
Here’s a little about Stephanie Blythe:
Ms. Blythe has sung in many of the renowned opera houses in the US and Europe including the Metropolitan Opera, San Francisco Opera, Seattle Opera, Royal Opera House Covent Garden, and the Opera National de Paris. Her many roles include the title roles in Carmen, Samson et Dalila , Orfeo ed Euridice, La Grande Duchesse, Tancredi, Mignon, and Guilio Cesare; Frugola, Principessa, and Zita in the Il Trittico, Fricka in both Das Rheingold and Die Walküre, Waltraute in Götterdämmerung, Azucena in Il Trovatore, Ulrica in Un Ballo in Maschera, Baba the Turk in The Rake’s Progress, Jezibaba in Rusalka, Jocasta in Oedipus Rex, Mere Marie in Dialogues des Carmélites; Isabella in L’Italiana in Algeri, Mistress Quickly in Falstaff, Ino/Juno in Semele, and Orlofsky in Die Fledermaus.
Ms Blythe recently starred in the Metropolitan Opera’s live HD broadcasts of Orfeo ed Euridice and Il Trittico. Her recordings of works by Mahler, Brahms, and Wagner and of arias by Handel and Bach are available on the Virgin Classics label.
This season, Ms. Blythe appears as Fricka in the Metropolitan Opera’s new productions of Das Rheingold and Die Walküre and makes her debut at the Lyric Opera of Chicago in Un Ballo in Maschera and The Mikado. She also appears in concert at the Concertgebouw and with the Collegiate Chorale in Carnegie Hall.
Ms. Blythe was named Musical America’s Vocalist of the Year for 2009. Her other awards include the 2007 Opera News Award and the 1999 Richard Tucker Award.
Hear samples from “Love is Everywhere” and find out more about Margaret Ruthven Lang in this video:
Buy your copy of “Love is Everywhere” today: