Isabelle Druet / Anne LeBozec SHAKESPEARE SONGS

There are thousands of vocal and instrumental settings of Shakespeare's texts, drawn from his comedies, tragedies and sonnets alike. The music celebrating his verse covers more than four centuries: this fascination has lived on into the 20th century and does not appear to be running out of steam.
A linguistic virtuoso, a master of human emotions, an expert in Machiavellian stories of intrigue and tyranny, and a bard of love and of the moment - these are but a few of the many facets of the Shakespearian message. We follow him into the heart of humanity and its excesses, from madness to the
burlesque, from despair to bonhomie, from hatred of one's fellow man to universal love. So is it really surprising that so many composers in so many languages have used such a rich tapestry of humanity, or that we - the singers at the end of this great chain - have decided to devote a recital to him? Several figures recur: Ophelia “in her sweet madness” and Desdemona in her despair, two women of high birth, infinitely fragile, victims of the machinery of power, of the vengeance and jealousy that eats at the hearts of men. Also appearing regularly is the fool or jester, the only member of the court - where everyone is muzzled - who can tell the truth in the form of a caricature or lament.
But this program also has a certain lightness, for it too undergirds the world, and Shakespeare celebrates it with Silvia or Cymbeline: idealized female figures who are depicted with ardor, astonishment, and rapture.
Shakespeare shows us the path through this labyrinth. He knows where the world is headed.
Let's follow him! (Isabelle Druet & Anne Le Bozec)


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