Composers Edition is please to report a great reception for the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra premiere of The Sail of a Flame on Saturday 11 January with mezzo-soprano Lucy Schaufer, conducted by Thomas Dausgaard.
“[it was] in the closing settings of Don Paterson’s “Palm, after Rilke” (a notable softening of the sung line), Jackie Kay’s “Pencil, Knife” (frenetic thrills), and Carol Ann Duffy’s “Anne Hathaway, that magic happened”Ken Walton, The Scotsman ★★★★
Keith Bruce, The Herald ★★★
“Richards has found a very personal path through the words of poets Kei Miller, Don Paterson, Jackie Kay, Carol Ann Duffy and Robin Robertson […] the lovely ensemble scoring for the strings and winds made the strongest immediate impression”
“The Sail of a Flame is an incisively worked song cycle setting six poems by modern writers. It’s texturally interesting, with spidery pizzicati and eerie bowed percussion. […] in the setting of Carol Ann Duffy’s Anne Hathaway, inspired by the famous line from Shakespeare’s will in which he leaves his wife his “second best bed”, [the music stepped] back, flowering into echoes of Berg, and allow the extraordinarily focused mezzo Lucy Schaufer to weave her intoxicating spell.”Simon Thompson, The Times ★★★