Release date: 1990
This acclaimed recording of Erik Satie's symphonic drama Socrate was originally released by Factory Classical in 1990. Sopranos Susan Bickley, Eileen Hulse and Patricia Rosario perform with pianist Robin Bowman and conductor Richard Bernas.
Completed in the spring of 1918, Socrate is a typically eccentric piece from French composer Erik Satie. Written in three movements for voice (four sopranos) and small orchestra (or piano), the text was extracted from three Platonic dialogues and depicts the last days of the Greek philosopher Socrates, condemned to death for corrupting the young men of Athens. The subtitle 'symphonic drama' belies the understatement and economy of Socrate, which Satie aimed to make "white and pure like antiquity."
Socrate is augmented here by five short song cycles written by Satie between 1886 and 1923: Trois Melodies (1886), Trois Autres Melodies, Trois Melodies (1916) and Quatres Petite Melodies (1920), together with the absurdist piece Ludions ('bottle imps') from 1923, with lyrics by poet Léon-Paul Fargue.
The 61 minute recording was made at All Saints Church, Petersham. The LTM edition features revised artwork and liner notes, including full texts for Socrate and all 18 Melodies in both French and English.
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