Clytemnestra: Orchestral Songs Ruby Hughes, BBC National Orchestra of Wales & Jac van Steen
- Gustav Mahler (1860 - 1911): 5 Rückert-Lieder:
- 15 Rückert-Lieder: No. 1, Blicke mir nicht in die Lieder!01:25
- 25 Rückert-Lieder: No. 2, Ich atmet' einen linden Duft!02:33
- 35 Rückert-Lieder: No. 3, Ich bin der Welt abhanden gekommen06:20
- 45 Rückert-Lieder: No. 4, Um Mitternacht05:50
- 55 Rückert-Lieder: No. 5, Liebst du um Schönheit02:17
- Alban Berg (1885 - 1935): Altenberg Lieder, Op. 4:
- 6Altenberg Lieder, Op. 4: No. 1, Seele, wie bist du schöner02:54
- 7Altenberg Lieder, Op. 4: No. 2, Sahst du nach dem Gewitterregen den Wald?01:07
- 8Altenberg Lieder, Op. 4: No. 3, Über die Grenzen des All01:30
- 9Altenberg Lieder, Op. 4: No. 4, Nichts ist gekommen01:21
- 10Altenberg Lieder, Op. 4: No. 5, Hier ist Friede (Passacaglia)03:24
- Rhian Samuel (b. 1944): Clytemnestra:
- 11Clytemnestra: No. 1, The Chain of Flame04:41
- 12Clytemnestra: No. 2, Lament for His Absence04:30
- 13Clytemnestra: No. 3, Agamemnon's Return04:03
- 14Clytemnestra: No. 4, The Deed01:28
- 15Clytemnestra: No. 5, Confession02:30
- 16Clytemnestra: No. 6, Defiance02:33
- 17Clytemnestra: No. 7, Epilogue. Dirge04:07
Info zu Clytemnestra: Orchestral Songs
In 2015, when Ruby Hughes discovered Clytemnestra by the Welsh composer Rhian Samuel, the work had not been performed since its première some 20 years earlier. Hughes describes the 24-minute score as ‘sun-scorched and luscious’ as well as ‘intensely visceral’, but in it she also heard echoes of Gustav Mahler and Alban Berg, two of Samuel’s influences. For her first album as soloist with orchestra, she has therefore devised a programme which brings together the three composers but which also spans a wide range of emotions and moods. For his Rückert-Lieder, Mahler selected five highly intimate and subtle poems by the great Romantic poet Friedrich Rückert, using his large orchestral forces sparingly in a chamber music style. Ten years later, in 1911, Berg found his texts closer at hand as he set contemporary poems by Peter Altenberg, one of the main proponents of Viennese impressionism. Berg's advanced harmonic language caused a scandal at the first performance in 1913, and the songs were only performed in their entirety in 1952, sixteen years after Berg’s death. For Clytemnestra, finally, Rhian Samuel assembled her own text, based on Aeschylus' tragedy Agamemnon and focusing Clytemnestra’s deep anguish at the death of her daughter and her need for revenge. Bringing this wide spectrum of human emotions to life, Ruby Hughes is supported by the BBC National Orchestra of Wales and conductor Jac van Steen.
Jac van Steen,
began her musical studies as a cellist graduating from the Guildhall School of Music in London. She went on to study voice at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater, Munich and the Royal College of Music, London, graduating in 2009.
Holder of a Borletti-Buitoni Trust Award, Shortlisted for a 2014 Royal Philharmonic Society Music Award, Winner of both First Prize and the Audience Prize at the 2009 London Handel Singing Competition and a former BBC New Generation Artist, Ruby Hughes is the daughter of the celebrated Welsh ceramicist Elizabeth Fritsch.
She made her debut at Theater an der Wein in 2009 as Roggiero in Rossini's Tancredi, returning as Fortuna in L’Incoronazione di Poppea. She has performed Euridice in L'Orfeo at Aix-en-Provence Festival, Sandrina L’infedelta delusa and Narcissa Philemon und Baucis at the Musikfestspiele Potsdam Sanssouci, The Indian Queen at the Schwetzinger Festival, and Rose Maurrant Street Scene at the Opéra de Toulon.
In the UK she has performed major roles with English National Opera, Garsington Opera, The Opera Group, Music Theatre Wales and Scottish Opera. She also appeared in Sir Jonathan Miller’s acclaimed production of the St Matthew Passion at the National Theatre.
In concert, she has sung under conductors including Rinaldo Allesandrini, Ivor Bolton, Jonathan Cohen, Laurence Cummings, Thierry Fischer, HK Gruber, Pablo Heras Casado, Philippe Herreweghe, Rene Jacobs, Juanjo Mena, Gianandrea Noseda, Marc Minkowski, Hervé Niquet, Thomas Søndergård, John Storgårds, and Osmo Vanska to name a few, and with ensembles such as Les Arts Florissants, all the BBC Orchestras, Britten Sinfonia, Le Concert Spirituel, Concerto Koln, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Philharmonia Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, and Zurich Chamber Orchestra.
Festival appearances have included the Bach Fest Leipzig, BBC Proms, Cheltenham, Edinburgh International, La Folle Journée, Gent Festival OdeGand, Göttingen, Marlboro, Lockenhaus, Manchester International, Spitalfields, and West Cork.
She has broadcast & recorded extensively covering a wide range of repertoire including works by Bach, Barber, Berg, Britten, Crumb, Handel, Haydn, Mahler, Maxwell Davies, Macmillan, Mozart, Schubert & Schumann.
Ruby is a passionate recitalist & works closely with the pianists Julius Drake & Joseph Middleton. In 2016 she released her first solo recital disc 'Nocturnal variations', songs by Schubert, Mahler, Britten and Berg with pianist Joseph Middleton for the Champs Hill label, named BBC Music Magazine’s choice of the month. In the same month she appeared on the critically acclaimed disc ‘Purcell Songs Realised by Britten’ for the same label. A champion of women composers, she recently recorded ‘Heroines of Love and Loss’: a disc dedicated to 17th century women composers for the BIS label, with long-term collaborator Jonas Nordberg, which was Editor's Choice in Gramophone Magazine, and was awarded a Diapason d'or. In 2018 she releases a disc for Chandos Records with the OAE and Laurence Cummings dedicated to Giulia Frasi, Handel’s lyric muse.
She made her US recital debut in 2015 with Julius Drake at The Frick Collection in New York and in 2017 made her Carnegie Hall recital debut with a commissioned song cycle by Huw Watkins. She recently performed and recorded Mahler Symphony No.2 with the Minnesota Symphony under Osmo Vanska for BIS Records.
Recent and future highlights include recitals at Wigmore Hall (including a new commission by Helen Grime), Newbury Spring, International Handel Festispiele Gottingen, Presteigne, West Cork, and 3 Choirs Festivals. In the UK concerts include those with the OAE, BBC Phil, BBC NOW and RLPO and further afield a return to the RIAS Kammerkoor for performances of Purcell’s Fairy Queen, Mahler’s Kindertotenlieder with Garry Walker and Staatsorchester Rheinische Philharmonie and a tour with the Orchestra of the Eighteenth Century.