JONATHAN DOVE (b.1959): Sirensong.
Catalogue Number: 06J095
Description: Sirensong tells the story of a scam perpetrated against a sailor in the British navy by a con man who entrapped him in what the sailor thought was a passionate love affair carried on by correspondence, with a girl who never really existed. Based on a true story, the libretto is direct and colloquial, the dialogue entirely believable, even to the point of some fairly explicit suggestions of the imagined consummation of the imaginary romance. Dove's music is similarly straightforward and immediate, tonal, with much use of leitmotifs to represent characters and specific traits associated with them, and some elements of repetitive, process-like mechanisms suggesting the obsessive nature of the young sailor's passion which blinkered him to the increasingly improbable circumlocutions and prevarications presented by the supposed brother of his beloved. Character-driven and uncluttered in narrative and musical structure, this is a most effective piece of modern operatic story-telling, akin to a paperback novel that you can't put down, that propels you into the next chapter because you can't wait until later to find out what happens. Libretto included. Brad Cooper (tenor), Mattijs van de Woerd (baritone), Amaryllis Dieliens (soprano), Siren Ensemble; Henk Guittart.