Songs for a Conquering Hero

ALISON CROOSE Burnham Thorpe Church


> Burnham Thorpe Church

What better place to appreciate a tribute to Lord Nelson than in the church where he was baptised and worshipped - especially when the words and music were performed by two distinguished names from the classical music world.

Catherine Bott (soprano) and David Owen Norris (piano) launched the 32nd season of Burnham Market concerts with a portrait of Nelson at home with his devoted Emma, a talented singer and pianist, with music from Lady Hamilton's Songbooks.

The entertainment was devised by Catherine Bott and included readings from Nelson's letters and Emma's journals, to bring the passionate, heroic lovers to life 200 years after the Battle of Trafalgar parted them.

While the presentation reflected Catherine Bott's sense of humour, there was nothing light-hearted about the quality of the performance.

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The soprano was battling with a cold so her fine voice could not be appreciated to the full and she protected it by speaking the words of some songs. But there was no hiding the huge talent of David Owen Norris with his exquisite playing.

The programme ranged from familiar songs by Haydn to a cantata he composed especially for Lady Hamilton in 1800.

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