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Barber: Knoxville - Summer of 1915; Essays for Orchestra Nos. 2 & 3 - Karina Gauvin (soprano); Thomas Trotter (organ); Royal Scottish National Orchestra; Marin Alsop (conductor)
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  1. Knoxville: Summer of 1915, for high voice & orchestra, Op. 24 (rev. for voice & chamber orchestra)
  2. Second Essay, for orchestra, Op. 17
  3. Third Essay, for orchestra, Op. 47
  4. Toccata Festiva, for organ & orchestra, Op. 36

Hearing Canadian soprano Karina Gauvin sing Knoxville: Summer of 1915 is almost like hearing it for the first time. She and Marin Alsop, leading the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, manage to wipe the cobwebs off an exquisite piece that's in danger of being perceived as a warhorse, given the frequency with which it's programmed and the number of undistinguished performances it receives. Gauvin sings with absolutely pure tone and unmannered simplicity. She tends to slightly drop the ends of her phrases so that her delivery ...