Barber Essay No 2 Instrumentation Laboratories

"The Aural Wonders of Samuel Barber" - By Grady Harp (Los Angeles, CA United States)

Samuel Barber is one of the enduring American composers whose importance is too often overlooked. He composed three excellent operas - Vanessa, Anthony and Cleopatra and A Hand of Bridge, ballets Medea, Cave of the Heart, Souvenirs, tow symphonies, three Essays for Orchestra, Music for a scene from Shelley, concerto for violin, cello, and piano, many vocal works including Knoxville:

This superb recording includes (of course) the Agnus Dei - Barber's choral setting for his Adagio for Strings, and other brilliant choral works that have become standards of the repertoire - A Stopwatch and an Ordnance Map for male chorus kettledrums and brass to the poem by Stephen Spender, Sure on this Shining Night, but it also includes some works practically unknown to audiences. Here the ensemble sings Twelfth night, To be sung on the water, The virgin martyrs, Let down the bars, O death, Mary Hynes, Anthony ... full review


Track Listings


  1. The School for Scandal, overture for orchestra, Op. 5
  2. Music for a Scene from Shelley, for orchestra, Op. 7
  3. Essay for orchestra, Op. 12
  4. Adagio for strings (or string quartet; arr. from 2nd mvt. of String Quartet), Op. 11
  5. Symphony No. 2, Op.19: I. Allegro ma non troppo
  6. Symphony No. 2, Op.19: II. Andante, un poco mosso
  7. Symphony No. 2, Op.19: III. Presto, senza battuta

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