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Classical Music Review

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Modern Muses
Contemporary Treasures for Soprano & Cello


Composers: Various
Performed by: Josefien Stoppelenburg (soprano) and Jean Hatmaker (cello)
Label: Navona Records
RRP: £13.99
Release Date: 22 October 2021

Inspired by Greek and Roman mythology, Modern Muses sees Josefien Stoppelenburg’s arresting soprano juxtaposed with Jean Hatmaker’s poetic cello. Join these two female performers on a journey through exotic soundscapes and empowering instrumentation in this diverse assortment of modern music...

I'm not a huge fan of modern classical music, where the style leans heavily towards the avant-garde, so I was happy to discover that, for the most part, Modern Muses: Contemporary Treasures for Soprano & Cello is more traditional in its delivery than I was expecting.

Over the course of these 12 tracks (54 min, 41 sec) we are treated to a wide variety of styles including the solo cello piece 'Ahimsa', which is composed by the performer, Jean Hatmaker.

Obviously if you are not a fan of soprano performances in general, there's little here that will win you over. However, for fans of opera Josefien Stoppelenburg's powerful voice will instantly win you over. And the emotion that she brings forth, especially on tracks like 'Il Lamento Di Fedra' is truly breathtaking.

This is a wonderful compilation of modern styles, most of which are steeped richly in traditional compositional styles.

Track listing:

Alexis Bacon
01. Alba (6:48)

Willem Stoppelenburg
02. Ionic (4:38)

Ronald Tremain
03. Ah! Sunflower (1:41)

Ronald Tremain
04. Sick Rose (1:42)

Jean Hatmaker
05. Ahimsa (5:25)

Bernd Johannes Wolf
06. This is Just to Say (1:50)

Willem Stoppelenburg
07. Olga (7:37)

Paul Ayres
08. Moon Sister (1:25)

Antonio Bibalo
09. Il Lamento Di Fedra (13:54)

Stacy Garrop
10. Dawn (2:49)

Katherine Dudney
11. Vocalise (4:25)

Adrián A. Cuello Piraquibis
12. Canción De Cuna (2:35)


Darren Rea

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Digital album
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