About the Album
The Songs of Jake Heggie
These are smart, fun, sexy, friendly musical settings of verse by (mostly) living poets by the composer of the forthcoming Dead Man Walking opera. Jake Heggie draws on all manners of compositional techniques--from expansive flights of polytonality to droll references to tango and other dance rhythms--but always at the service of his essentially lyrical musical personality, which can be vaguely described as updated Samuel Barber. Beyond writing well for the voice, Heggie gives the singers an unfettered emotional outlet and a range of theatrical moods, both in his choice of stylish, emotionally present verse and in his broad, clearly etched melodies that so easily accommodate coloring and nuance.
Listen to only the first track of this recording, a heart-wrenching setting of Emily Dickinson's poem "I shall not live in vain" sung by Renée Fleming, and be immediately convinced that this compilation by Jake Heggie is a must for any lover of song.AllMusic Review
Release Date: September 14, 1999
CD / Download: 1