Gerard Manley Hopkins Poems In Musical Adaptations
 
Gerard Manley Hopkins Poems In Musical Adaptations
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Martin Beek
Artist & Lyricist

 

 

 The piety and deep thoughtfulness of Hopkins can be discerned in this intelligent interpretation of the Victorian poet's work. Sean has successfully teased out meaning and nuance. He is clearly satiated in the work, its spiritual power, its beauty and the divine content of the poetry - mysteries that still have the power to enrapture us in this less Godly age. O'Leary has brought the spirit of these poems alive and found the hidden song within.

In the darker and more mysterious ballads, there is an approach to Hopkins' work that I particularly respond to, it is conspiratorial and private; the beat moves gently and sympathetically with Hopkins' text and does not overwhelm it or set boundaries to the mysterious quality of the work.

In Sean O'Leary's The Alchemist there is a gritty determination, a brave confronting of morality, of spiritual passion, of hope and belief wrapped in Hopkins' luscious use of the English language. It speaks as if from another age, like a parallel universe we only sometimes glimpse, Hopkins' voice is here, and his words call out and lead us on.

25 May 2005
 
© Martin Beek 2005