Folk song brings a real glow

Wymondham Music Week Classical Folk @ Wymondham Abbey

Wymondham Music Week Classical Folk @ Wymondham Abbey

By MICHAEL DRAKE

So much of the world's greatest music features movements incorporating folk tunes from the composers' native countries, but yesterday's lunchtime recital gave further insight in more simple, vocal arrangements.

Mezzo-soprano Vera Cooke displayed a warm, round tone and faultless diction in a trio of traditional American songs arranged by Aaron Copland which she followed in quite different Gallic character with Ravel's setting of Greek folk songs, particularly suited to her voice and in which she was able to show a real poignancy at the top of her range.

And, as throughout the whole programme, Eileen Last was so sympathetic in her piano accompaniment.

David Fitzgerald was imaginative with alto saxophone arrangements by Vaughan Williams of a suite of English folk songs.

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A couple of well-loved Irish country songs led to delightful treatment by Brahms of German folk songs – the first, almost with abandon and the second in more classical vein and a final fling with more English traditional songs.

The whole interlude was as bright as the day itself.

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