Review: Sally Silver & Richard Bonynge - Massenet Songs - Ivre D'Amour
Album Cover - Massenet Songs - Ivre D'Amour
Massenet Songs - Ivre D'Amour
 Artist: Sally Silver, Richard Bonynge
 Album: Massenet Songs - Ivre D'Amour
 Date of Release: 2012/11/15
 Label: Guild Music
 Cat. No.: GMCD 7393
 Country of Release: SU, UK
 Genre/s: Classical

 Sub-Genre/s: Chamber Music
 Type: Studio
   Time: 63:51
   Date of Review: 2013/04/17
   Web Site:

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Massenet Songs - Ivre D'Amour

Sally Silver and Richard Bonynge's Massenet Songs - Ivre D'Amour was released on 15th November 2012 on the Guild Music label. This is their third recital recording together and thus surely must signify more than approval by Bonynge of Ms. Silver. (They had previously worked together also.) Bonynge, after all - for those that perhaps were not fortunate enough to be around at the time - was the husband, and from about 1962 conductor and accompanist of most of the late great Dame Joan Sutherland's performances until her retirement in 1990. He is also the greatest champion of the music of Massenet. Ms. Silver's own star has been in the ascendant fast and high. She has gained great respect also for her extensive, wide repertoire. Her voice is as clear as a mountain stream and the finest bel canto of recent times, with beautiful diction as well.

On Massenet Songs - Ivre D'Amour Ms. Silver gives these Massenet songs the gloriously fullest range of her expression, from an angelic, almost child-like innocence to the longing of passionate love, and every emotion in between and beyond. At all times her voice seems effortless, and one never notices Ms. Silver even breathing. Never missing the faintest nuance, Sally Silver is sheer delight throughout this album, as indeed she was at the launch of this album.

Guest artist Gabriella Swallow also delights with her expressive cello on Élégie and Amours bénis, as indeed she also did at the launch concert. Richard Bonynge will hardly need commenting upon, still seeming at his peak in spite of the years having gone by, if occasionally seeming just a little domineering perhaps.

All in all, one could hardly imagine this Massenet material being in better hands. The twenty-eight songs on this CD represent one-tenth of Massenet's total output of songs, and seem to represent a perfect cross-section of his material in styles and periods. For the most part, they are wonderful miniatures, some a little longer. The wide range of styles are perfectly handled by Bonynge and perfectly matched by Ms. Silver. Indeed, this is one of the most perfect vocal recordings it has been my pleasure to encounter. It is enhanced by the wonderful acoustics of Potton Hall, Suffolk, and its subtle reverb.

Even if you were perhaps thus far not particularly enamoured of Massenet's songs, Sally Silver will likely change your mind and perhaps even make you an ardent aficionado. Above all, the beauty of this recording is outstanding and surely must capture ear and heart of anyone capable of appreciating good, nay great, music.

Hence, Sally Silver and Richard Bonynge's Massenet Songs - Ivre D'Amour has to be a must have for any music lover. It is a firm favourite here already and will keep playing and playing. In conclusion, I would like to add that one can only hope most ardently that a second Massenet recording will be forthcoming.

© 2013 Rainlore's World/Rainlore. All rights reserved.

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Track List:

 1. Ivre d'amour - Intoxicated with love Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 3:24
 2. C'est l'amour - It's love Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 1:33
 3. Ma petite mère a pleuré - My mother cried Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 2:42
 4. Sérénade de Zanetto - Zanetto's Serenade Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 1:41
 5. Il pleuvait - It was raining Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 1:58
 6. Si tu l'oses! - If you dare! Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 2:00
 7. Élégie - Elegy Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 3:18
 8. Quelques chansons mauves - Some Mauve Songs: En même temps que ton amour - At the same time as your love Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 1:38
9. Quelques chansons mauves - Some Mauve Songs: Quand nous nous sommes vus pour la première fois - When we saw each other for the very first time Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 1:41
10. Quelques chansons mauves - Some Mauve Songs: Jamais un tel bonheur - Never has such happiness Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 1:20
11. Que l'heure est donc brève - How brief is the hour (Poème d'avril, No.6) Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 1:20
12. Ave Maria - Original Latin Prayer Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 4:15
13. Guitare - Guitar Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 1:11
14. Première danse - First dance Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 2:13
15. La verdadera vida - Real life music by J. Massenet and Marc Berthomieu Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 1:48
16. Amours bénis - Blessed love Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 4:04
17. Chanson andalouse - Andalusian Song Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 3:19
18. Avril est amoureux - April is in love Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 2:27
19. Enchantement! - Enchantment! Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 2:28
20. Quand on aime - When you're in love Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 1:32
21. Sonnet - Sonnet Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 3:30
22. Pensée de printemps - Spring thought Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 2:34
23. À deux pleurer - Weeping together Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 1:56
24. Chanson désespérée - Desperate song Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 1:47
25. Soir de rêve - An evening's dream Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 2:09
26. Avec toi! - With you! Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 1:33
27. Crépuscule -Twilight (Poème Pastoral, No.5) Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 1:55
28. Jamais plus! - Never again! Jules Massenet (1842-1912) - 2:27

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Sally Silver - soprano
Richard Bonynge - piano

Gabriella Swallow - cello (on 7, 16)


Purchasing Info:

Massenet Songs - Ivre D'Amour can be purchased from:
Guild Music

Most major CD stores and online sources

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