Kathleen Ferrier - What Is Life?

Wednesday 1st December 2004
Kathleen Ferrier - What Is Life?
Kathleen Ferrier - What Is Life?

STYLE: Classical
RATING 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8
LABEL: Living Era CDAJA5536

Reviewed by Norman Smith

We were robbed of KF by breast cancer in 1953. Aged 41, she surely had her finest moments to come as the voice ripens in your 40s. She was and still is the finest contralto Britain has ever produced, who inspired Britten and Bliss to write for her, and she enjoyed close friendship with Barbirolli, no less...Nevertheless, what she gave to us remains, and this is a fine collection from a remarkable era. 21 beautifully crafted renditions of a variety of songs, two of the most outstanding being "O Thou That Tellest Good Things To Zion" from Handel's Messiah and the haunting "Have Mercy On Me Lord" from Bach's St. Matthew Passion. This is a fitting tribute to a unique talent which will satisfy existing fans and hopefully attract new ones. A must-get CD. 

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