Monday, August 22, 2011

Frederick Delius Songbook CD: U.S. Release

Read press release online at this link.


217 Records

Tami Kennedy

Volume One of the Frederick Delius Songbook to be Released in the United States this September

ASHFORD, CONNECTICUT (August 22, 2011) – In honor of the 150th anniversary of the birth of the great English composer Frederick Delius (1862-1934), The Complete Delius Songbook – Volume 1 will be released as a CD in the U.S. on September 13, 2011. This is the first volume in a two-volume series that will comprise the first-ever complete recording of all 61 surviving songs of Frederick Delius for voice and piano.

This recording features baritone Mark Stone accompanied by Stephen Barlow on piano. Michael Maglaras of 217 Records is Executive Producer. Produced and released first in the United Kingdom on July 18, 2011 on the Stone Records label, and produced in association with 217 Records, this eventual two-volume journey through the Delius songbook will be a delight to listeners everywhere.

“We at 217 Records cannot imagine a finer exponent of the English art song than baritone Mark Stone. That he possesses a superb instrument is clear to everyone who knows his work. But he is also a singer of rare intelligence and refinement, and this recording bears his unmistakable stamp,” said Michael Maglaras. “Stephen Barlow is the logical successor to Gerald Moore. He is a great English pianist who brings not only gracious support to this undertaking, but helps create, in every song, an immediate sense of both the drama and the deeper meaning of Delius’s work.”

Volume 1, which includes first-time recordings of five of these songs, features all of Delius’s songs to English and Norwegian texts, the latter being sung in English translation. Delius was fascinated and heavily influenced by Norwegian culture, as is evidenced by the large number of Norwegian poems he chose to set, including the ever popular songs Twilight Fancies and Young Venevil.

Volume 1’s booklet contains the full texts, together with the original Norwegian poetry and extensive notes for each song. This major classical music release is supported by the Delius Society and the Ireland Trust. Volume 2 is expected to be released in early 2012. 217 Records’ Michael Maglaras will also serve as Executive Producer of this release.

The Complete Delius Songbook - Volume 1 is available for purchase on the websites of Amazon and Stone Records

What they’re saying:
“Stone’s engagingly natural style and immaculate diction are supported by Barlow’s sympathetic playing.” ~ The Sunday Times

“Stone proves an expert guide – not just by uncovering little-known manuscripts, but by investing Delius’s songs with verve and variety of mood.” ~ Financial Times

More about Mark Stone and Stephen Barlow: The UK’s Mark Stone is critically acclaimed for his performances on stage and in concert. His forthcoming engagements include debuts at La Scala, Oper Köln and Deutsche Oper, Berlin as well as return visits to the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden and The Opera Company of Philadelphia. In recital with Stephen Barlow, he has been described as "a baritone of extraordinary elegance and unforced expressiveness...versatile in his response to the varying stylistic demands” with Barlow “accompanying his voice with a genuine feeling for tone-colour and shape". View a video of Stone and Barlow rehearsing at this link.

More about 217 Records: Located in Ashford, Connecticut, 217 Records is an independent label specializing in alternative rock, jazz, and spoken word recordings. Founder Michael Maglaras was trained as an opera singer in the United States and Europe and has performed widely as a singer and opera director. Among other recordings of note, 217 Records’ discography includes a complete recording of Longfellow's The Song of Hiawatha, as well as two volumes of the Whittier Bicentennial Recording Project.

On the Web:
Stone Records --
217 Records --
217 Films –


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

The Sunday Times Reviews new Frederick Delius Songbook CD

Mark Stone, Stephen Barlow (piano)
Stone Records
Just under half of Delius’s 61 seldom programmed songs are recorded, so we can expect another volume to complete his “songbook”. The likeable British baritone Mark Stone is the founder-owner of Stone Records, but this is more than a vanity project (he is also making a Wolf edition, in which he has not participated), because he specialises in the undervalued territory of English song. He even sings Delius’s settings of Norwegian or German texts in English translations — several by Peter Pears and one of his own. The highlights here are the Four Old English Lyrics, to words by Shakespeare and Ben Jonson, among others, in which Stone’s engagingly natural style and immaculate diction are supported by Barlow’s sympathetic playing. HC

Monday, August 8, 2011

Frederick Delius Remembered

Andrew Clark reviews the new CD "The Complete Delius Songbook - Volume 1" in the Financial Times.

Next year marks the 150th anniversary of Delius’s birth, but don’t expect the music business to take any note: the Bradford-born composer, who spent most of his life in self-imposed exile from England, remains deeply unfashionable. Hats off, then, to baritone Mark Stone – best known as a suave Eisenstein (Die Fledermaus) – for compiling a two-CD Delius songbook, the first volume of which contains a few surprises.... Continue reading the article at this link.

This CD was released in the UK in July and will be released in the US on September 13. It is available for purchase on the websites of Amazon and Stone Records.

Featuring baritone Mark Stone and Stephen Barlow on piano. Produced in association with 217 Records and supported by the Delius Society and the Ireland Trust.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

John Marin Documentary to Screen at the Boca Raton Museum of Art

Date: September 24 and September 25, 2011
Time: 2:00pm
Film Screening: "John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint!"
Location: Boca Raton Museum of Art
Boca Raton, Florida
Director Michael Maglaras of 217 Films will introduce the film.
View a clip at this link.

More about the film:
"John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint!" tells the story of one of the most important artistic figures of the first half of the 20th century, and the undisputed father of American Modernism. Utilizing more than 70 of Marin's paintings, drawings, and etchings, including works in the private collection of the Marin estate which have seldom been exhibited, filmmaker Michael Maglaras tells the story of Marin's life, from his beginnings in New Jersey, and his early experiments in watercolor, to his days at Cape Split in Down East Maine, where, with his late oils, he established himself as one of the preeminent masters of American art. Written, narrated, and directed by Michael Maglaras of 217 Films. 2009.

Friday, August 5, 2011

John Marin on the Rise

"Marin, you are a mighty fine fellow, but do you know your job as well as those old boys did, and will your stuff last as long?"
~ John Marin, 1936

Terry Teachout writes about why he thinks John Marin so often gets the "John who?" treatment, and notes "Mr. Marin's stock appears at long last to be on the rise."

Wall Street Journal
How a Great American Artist Vanished From the Critical Scope -- About Last Night
Whatever happened to John Marin?

Discover more about American master John Marin in 217 Films' latest essay on film "John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint!"

View clips from the film at this link.

Order the DVD on Film Baby or Amazon.

In addition to paintings and photographs, "John Marin: Let the Paint be Paint!" features extensive footage of Marin at work that has been rarely seen. Written, directed, and narrated by Michael Maglaras.

Painting above: Courtesy of Colby College Museum of Art, gift of John Marin Jr. and Norma B. Marin: "From Seeing Cape Split" by John Marin, 1935, oil on canvas, 23 by 29.5 inches.