Judith Kellock: Barber Despite and still Op. 41

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Barber Despite and Still (Op. 41)
Judith Kellock, soprano
Xak Bjerken, piano

I. A last song 00:00
II. My lizard 02:09
III. In the wilderness 03:14
IV. Solitary hotel 06:38
V. Despite and still 09:11

I. words by Robert Graves
II. words by Theodore Roethke
III. words by Robert Graves
IV. words by James Joyce
V. words by Robert Graves

The cycle "Despite and still", taking it's name from the last song of the group was dedicated to Leontyne Price, who gave the firts performance with pianist David Garvey on 27 April 1969 at Avery Fisher Hall. The songs are both intellectually and vocally challenging, which may explain why they have been the most neglected of the Barber repertoire in this gengr. In their keenly dramatic rendering of enigmatic texts, the songs (especially no. I,III and V) represent the duality of Barber's mature style-an affinity for late nineteenth-century German romantic Lieder and a free use of twentieth-century harmonic language.