This CD is perhaps unique in the history of vocal and choral music in that it combines a Russian Male voice choir with a English composer to sing Russian and American folk songs. Where else in the world will you be able to buy a recording of one of the best Russian choirs singing a impossible difficult and stunning arrangement of Shenandoah or hear their gentle approach to a inventive setting of The Streets of Laredo. The Rites of Passage compositions are beautiful moving settings of six Pushkin poems in English. From the romanticism of the Flower to the saddness of the Elegy there is a depth and expanse of emotion both in the singing and the settings. The mood is then lightened by the evocative setting of Russian folk tunes. Humour and tragedy abound and are combined with singing of impossible statue and emotion. This really is a unique CD recording. The only one of its kind in the world.
"Golightly possesses a distinctive musical voice"
"It could well be that Golightly will come to be regarded as an English Shostakovich;there are numerous stylistic similarities to the Russian model:those driving motor rhythms and characteristic, slender wisps of solo themes;and above all the relentless on going energy, so often dark toned and uncompromising."
The Music of David Golightly, by Alexander Govorov
David Golightly's Choral music was the first Western composer's music to become part of Soglasie's repertoire, following the Choir's first meeting with the composer in March 1993. I was greatly interested in his work from the first, particularly as I was familiar with the English style of Elgar, Vaughan Williams, Britten and Tippet. David Golightly's work is indisputably English, but his music also reveals an Englishman with a Russian Soul.
As we rehearsed "Rites of Passage" we were inspired. Working our way towards a better understanding of the choral pieces, we discovered both the composer's love for Pushkin's poetry and the deep sincerity of his talent. The ideas and images of Pushkin's words expressed themselves through the composer's language of music.
The great Russian composer, Mussorgsky, said, "Of greatest importance for a composer in creating music is the search for truth". It is this truth we hear when we perform David Golightly's music.
Our further association with this talented English composer developed into a large scale co-operation, "The St Petersburg Mass ", which was composed for and commissioned by the Soglasie Choir. The premiere of this work in St Petersburg in May 1994 was a major event in the musical life of the city and many important artists and composers attended this unique occasion. Professor Mussin, who is head of Conducting at the St Petersburg Conservatoire, commented that it was "Music of the Heart". and it received a ten-minute standing ovation from an enthusiastic audience.
Check out the artist's website:
1. Life' S Carriage
2. The Bird
3. The Singer
4. The Flower
7. The Buffalo Skinners
8. Chisholm Trail
10. The Streets of Laredo
11. John Hardy
12. Along the Piterskaya Street
13. The Bell Is Jingling Monotonously
14. The Snowdrifts Melt
15. Oh You Are So Broad the Steppe
16. The Song of the Volga Hardworkers
17. Along the Streets the Snow Is Coming
18. The Steppe Is All Around
19. The Fog Has Fallen
20. The Gnat
21. What's Your Song About You Gilded Bee?
22. The Ballad of the Twelve Robbers
24. Those Evening Bells