Classical Editor: Rob Barnett

Music Webmaster
Len Mullenger:

Delius & Gurney Songs Ian & Jennifer Partridge (tenor & piano)   ETCETERA KTC 1063 [48'30"]
Save around 22% with

This is a pleasant programme of English songs and makes a good souvenir of a well loved tenor in his prime, in repertoire which he made his own. He is completely at one in partnership with his sister, who has been his regular accompanist for many years.

The CD was obtained for review after their recent successful appearance at South Bank Centre in an afternoon event devoted to Ivor Gurney, many of whose poems were composed whilst he was serving in the trenches in France, longing for his West Country home countryside. A setting of one of those is included, Severn Meadows, " - - - do not forget me quite, O Severn meadows". Sadly, those wartime experiences devasted an already fragile mental balance and, after some years convalescence, he had to spend the remainder of his life in mental hospitals.

Gurney's settings of many poets are flexible and the piano accompaniments underline the overall moods, rather than word-painting. The mostly early songs by Frederick Delius come from the last decade of the 19th century. Their styles are more cosmopolitan than Gurney's, some of them quite lively.

The recording was made in 1980 in a resonant chapel in Hampstead. It is adequate for its time, but likely to appeal most to people who have enjoyed hearing this duo over the years. The notes provide sufficient background, and full texts are enclosed, helpful even though Ian Partridge's diction is notably clear.


Peter Grahame Woolf


Peter Grahame Woolf

Reviews from previous months

Reviews carry sales links
but you can also purchase

Return to Index