- Lisa Bielawa — The Lay of the Love and Death: Introit-Riding $0.99 on iTunes
- Lisa Bielawa — The Lay of the Love and Death: Meditation 1 $0.99 on iTunes
- Lisa Bielawa — The Lay of the Love and Death: I Carry the Flag $0.99 on iTunes
- Lisa Bielawa — The Lay of the Love and Death: Meditation 2 $0.99 on iTunes
- Lisa Bielawa — The Lay of the Love and Death: Castle $0.99 on iTunes
- Lisa Bielawa — The Lay of the Love and Death: Meditation 3 $0.99 on iTunes
- Lisa Bielawa — The Lay of the Love and Death: Tower Room $0.99 on iTunes
- Lisa Bielawa — The Lay of the Love and Death: Storm in the House $0.99 on iTunes
- Lisa Bielawa — The Lay of the Love and Death: Meditation 4 $0.99 on iTunes
- Lisa Bielawa — The Lay of the Love and Death: It Has Never Been So Kingly $0.99 on iTunes
- Lisa Bielawa — Wait $0.99 on iTunes
- Lisa Bielawa — Hurry
- Eric Jacobsen (Cello)
- Anthony McGill (Clarinet)
- Lance Suzuki (Flute)
- Jesse Blumberg (Baritone)
- Jocelyn Dueck (Piano)
- Colin Jacobsen (Violin)
- Evelyne Luest (Piano)
- Sadie Dawkins
- Benjamin Hochman (Piano)
Notes & Reviews:
At the heart of composer-vocalist Lisa Bielawa’s new album The Lay of the Love is her 25-minute work, completed in 2006, based on Rainer Maria Rilke’s epic poem, “The Lay of the Love and Death of Cornet Christopher Rilke.” Together the music and lyrics contemplate the loss of innocence and address the sobering notion that all die young. “Wait”, for piano with drone, premiered in 2002, is the second of four related works based on six lines from Pushkin’s “Eugene Onegin”, which Bielawa describes as “passages of great intimacy and vulnerability.” Premiered in 2004, “Hurry”, Bielawa’s recreation in musical time of the experience she had when reading Boris Pasternak’s poem “Hurry, My Verses,” completes the album. Ms. Bielawa is a 2009 Rome Prize winner in Musical Composition. She takes inspiration for her work from literature and artistic collaborations. She began touring with the Philip Glass Ensemble in 1992, and in 1997 co-founded the MATA Festival. She was appointed Artistic Director of the San Francisco Girls Chorus in 2013.
American Record Guide, November/December 2015
Lisa Bielawa's masterly Lay of the Love and Death (2006) is a setting (in translation) of excerpts from Rilke's epic poem of the same name dealing with the death of his fictional ancestor Cornet Christopher, who was said to have died in the 17th century with the Hussars. Rilke's text portrays Cornet finding his beloved at a festival, making love to her in its castle, and having to leave her owing to an invasion by the enemy. He is killed while fleeing. Cornet is sung effectively by baritone Blumberg, his feelings portrayed by a solo violin (well played by Mr Jacobsen). The music is dramatic, intimate, and darkly personal, just like the poetry, reminding me somewhat of Britten in its parlando expression and lyrical tonal emphases. Soloists are outstanding and give the work a convincing reading.
Wait (2002) is a piano piece illuminating a line from Pushkin's Eugene Onegin, dealing with a storm at sea. It is part of a quartet of works dealing with small excerpts from the same writer. This piece is a piano solo, improvisatory in nature, with a quiet held note appearing in the violin (and a a soft background hum by Ms Bielawa) about halfway through, perhaps depicting the ghostly calm before the storm.
Hurry (2004) is the composer's response to a poem by Pasternak. This piece, for soprano and a quintet of flute, clarinet, violin, cello, and piano, deals with the urge to put unspeakable feelings into verse. The 15-minute piece is appropriately a pretty intense affair. A notable release. Texts included and notes by the composer.
Recording information: Recital Hall, Purchase College, State University of New (2007).
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Works DetailsBielawa, Lisa : The Lay of the Love and Death, for baritone, violin & piano
- Performers: Jesse Blumberg (Baritone); Jocelyn Dueck (Piano); Colin Jacobsen (Violin)
- Running Time: 23 min. 43 sec.
- Period Time: Contemporary
Bielawa, Lisa : Wait, for drone & piano
- Performer: Evelyne Luest (Piano)
- Running Time: 7 min. 42 sec.
- Period Time: Contemporary
Bielawa, Lisa : Hurry, for soprano, flute, violin, clarinet, cello & piano
- Performers: Sadie Dawkins; Benjamin Hochman (Piano); Colin Jacobsen (Violin); Eric Jacobsen (Cello); Anthony McGill (Clarinet); Lance Suzuki (Flute)
- Running Time: 15 min. 52 sec.
- Period Time: Contemporary