Songs on Poems of Emily Dickinson
Leo Smit has an impressive pedigree as an American composer and musician. A virtuoso pianist, he has worked closely with such legends as Stravinsky, Balanchine, Copland and Stokowski. He has set more that 75 of Emily Dickinson's poems to music, grouping the works into cycles about related subject matter. The disc contains the world premiere recordings of three of those cycles- Childe Emilie- Memories and Fantasies of Childhood, The Celestrial Thrush- Songs of Music and Bird, and The White Diadem- Songs About Poets and Poetry. Smit's songs display great sensitivity to Dickinson's very personal world, and reflect the poet's emotional range by adopting an extremely colorful palette. The songs frequently veer from the simple and tonal to more rhythmically complex and chromatic settings, always alert to word and mood.
“Recommended to anyone at all taken with songs in the English language. Smit’s mastery is patent in every bar and breath.” - Classical Music on the Web (5 stars)
“Smit has truly found himself in this project. Utilizing his own voice and deftly imploring the quotes and homages, the ear is as engaged with sounds as it is with the storied stanzas.” - JWR (Classical Sentinel)
Childe Emilie (29:42)
The Celestial Thrush (23:17)
The White Diadem (11:35)
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