Magazine article Gramophone

G Benjamin: Into the Little Hill

Magazine article Gramophone

G Benjamin: Into the Little Hill

Article excerpt

G Benjamin

Into the Little Hill (a). Dream of the Song (b). Flight (c) Hila Plitmann sop (a) Susan Bickley contr (b) Bejun Mehta counterten (c) Michael Cox fl (b) Netherlands Chamber Choir; (a) London Sinfonietta; (b) Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra / George Benjamin

Nimbus (F) N15964 (64' * DDD)

Recorded live at the (c) Queen Elizabeth Hall, London, May 12,2012; (b) Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, September 25-26,2015 (b) From RCO Live [SACD] RC016003 (7/16) Includes texts and translation

Nimbus's latest George Benjamin disc has no unrecorded works but does make a rounded and absorbing programme. Good to have a second version of Into the Little Hill (2006), the 'lyric tale' that was his first opera and whose darkly ironic take on the Pied Piper legend is more topical than a decade ago. The earlier account has more subtly complemented singers, but Hila Plitmann and Susan Bickley evince drama and intimacy aplenty in their multiple roles and Benjamin draws a superfine response from the London Sinfonietta in fastidious scoring (basset-horns and cornets prominent) that greatly enhances the mesmeric aura. …

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