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Heart on the Wall: African American Art Songs for Orchestra / Louise Toppin

Audio Samples

>Owens, Robert (I) : Heart on the Wall, songs for voice & piano
>Williams, Julius P. : Myths of History, for voice & piano (or orchestra)
>Morris, Robert L. : Lyric Suite, for voice & piano (or orchestra)
>Okoye, Nkeiru : Songs of Harriet Tubman, for voice & piano (or orchestra)

Album Summary

>Owens, Robert (I) : Heart on the Wall, songs for voice & piano
>Williams, Julius P. : Myths of History, for voice & piano (or orchestra)
>Morris, Robert L. : Lyric Suite, for voice & piano (or orchestra)
>Okoye, Nkeiru : Songs of Harriet Tubman, for voice & piano (or orchestra)
Performer Conductor Ensembles Composers

Notes & Reviews:

The art song cycles and collections crafted by the American composers on this recording musically document African-American culture through poetry, historical subjects, the diaspora and vernacular elements. This is a contemporary view of the art song tradition in world premiere recordings. Louise Toppin has received critical acclaim for her operatic, orchestral, and oratorio performances around the world. In addition to opera performances, including Lee Hoiby's onewoman opera The Italian Lesson, Ms. Toppin tours in Gershwin on Broadway.

American Record Guide, July / August 2012
Soprano Louise Toppin sings with firm, gleaming tone, secure pitch, and admirably clear, unfussy diction. While I sometimes might wish for a more rounded tone in the midrange, she has plenty of brass to match the brass-heavy scorings here, and a fine purity in her top notes. The Dvorak Symphony plays with spirit and accuracy - the excellent brass and percussion sections deserve special mention - but the jazz-inflected syncopated rhythms are wooden.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: Prague Radio Hall, Prague, Czech Republic (2006-2007).



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Works Details

>Owens, Robert (I) : Heart on the Wall, songs for voice & piano
  • Performer: Louise Toppin (Soprano)
  • Conductor: Julius Williams
  • Ensemble: Dvorak Symphony Orchestra
  • Running Time: 2 min. 13 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1968

>Williams, Julius P. : Myths of History, for voice & piano (or orchestra)
  • Performer: Louise Toppin (Soprano)
  • Conductor: Julius Williams
  • Running Time: 7 min. 11 sec.

>Morris, Robert L. : Lyric Suite, for voice & piano (or orchestra)
  • Performer: Louise Toppin (Soprano)
  • Conductor: Julius Williams
  • Running Time: 3 min. 24 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary

>Okoye, Nkeiru : Songs of Harriet Tubman, for voice & piano (or orchestra)
  • Performer: Louise Toppin (Soprano)
  • Conductor: Julius Williams
  • Running Time: 25 min. 6 sec.
  • Form: Vocal