All CDs 20% off with promo code "HOLIDAY15"


The Billy Collins Suite: Songs Inspired by His Poetry

Buy Album

    • CD
    • $16.00
    • 1 Disc
    • FLAC
    • $10.00
    • 16-bit
    • MP3
    • $7.00
    • 256 kbps

The Billy Collins Suite: Songs Inspired by His Poetry

Lincoln TrioBuffy BaggottDavid CunliffeDesirée RuhstratJoel LinkJohn Bruce YehJohn GoodwinJonathan BeyerLita GrierMarta AznavoorianNuiko WaddenStacy GarropSteve RobinsonSusan CookTim MunroYoko Yamada-Selvaggio

  • CDR 90000 115

Cedille Selects tracks are designed to provide a representative overview of the album

    • The Invention of the Saxophone (12:17)

    • PIERRE JALBERT (b. 1967)

      Susan Cook, saxophone
      Yoko Yamada-Selvaggio, piano
      Steve Robinson, narrator

      The Invention of the Saxophone (12:17)

    • I. Introduction to Poetry (5:51)

    • STACY GARROP (b. 1969)

      Buffy Baggott, mezzo-soprano
      Lincoln Trio
      Desiree Ruhstrat, violin
      David Cunliffe, cello
      Marta Aznavorian, piano

      Ars Poetica

      I. Introduction to Poetry (5:51)

    • II. Sonnet (2:01)

    • II. Sonnet (2:01)

    • III. Vade Mecum (2:30)

    • III. Vade Mecum (2:30)

    • IV. Endangered (5:17)

    • IV. Endangered (5:17)

    • Insomnia (3:59)

    • VIVIAN FUNG (b. 1975)

      John Bruce Yeh, clarinet
      David Cunliffe, cello
      Marta Aznavoorian, piano
      Steve Robinson, narrator

      Insomnia (3:59)

    • The Man in the Moon (3:25)

    • The Man in the Moon (3:25)

    • The Willies (3:19)

    • The Willies (3:19)

    • Forgetfulness (5:33)

    • LITA GRIER (b. 1937)

      Jonathan Beyer, baritone
      John Bruce Yeh, clarinet
      John Goodwin, piano

      Forgetfulness (5:33)

    • Dancing Towards Bethlehem (3:30)

    • Dancing Towards Bethlehem (3:30)

    • Reading an Anthology of Chinese Poems of the Sung Dynasty, I Pause To Admire the Length and Clarity of Their Titles (6:09)

    • ZHOU TIAN (b. 1981)

      Tim Munro, flute
      Joel Link, viola
      Nuiko Wadden, harp
      Steve Robinson, narrator

      Reading an Anthology of Chinese Poems of the Sung Dynasty, I Pause To Admire the Length and Clarity of Their Titles (6:09)

Album Description Download Full CD Booklet

Billy Collins, former U.S. poet laureate, has been hailed as the first American poet since Robert Frost to garner great critical acclaim and broad popular appeal in equal measure. "His poems generate surprise, inviting the reader to anticipate each new one as if it might be the best one yet" (World Literature Today). In Collins's poetry, "even the most commonplace things never turn out quite the way you think they will" (Newsweek).

The Billy Collins Suite comprises intimate chamber settings for eleven Collins poems, some sung, others narrated. The CD includes Pierre Jalbert's jazzy, other-worldly take on "The Invention of the Saxophone"; Stacy Garrop's Ars Poetica, a four-song cycle ranging from a jaunty “Sonnet” to the heartbreaking “Endangered”; Vivian Fung's Collins trilogy of vivid miniature comedy-dramas marked by especially effective use of the clarinet; Lita Grier's poignant "Forgetfulness" and nostalgic "Dancing Towards Bethlehem"; and Zhou Tian's "Reading an Anthology of Chinese Poems . . ." in which flute, viola, and harp evoke Far Eastern imagery.

Artists include Chicago Lyric and San Francisco Opera mezzo-soprano Buffy Baggott, rising young baritone Jonathan Beyer, Chicago Symphony Orchestra Acting Principal Clarinet John Bruce Yeh, flutist Tim Munro of eighth blackbird, saxophonist Susan Cook, the Lincoln Trio, harpist Nuiko Wadden, pianists Yoko Yamada-Selvaggio and John Goodwin, and narrator Steve Robinson of WFMT Radio.

The project was conceived and commissioned by Chicago's innovative Music in the Loft chamber series, "one of the most unique springboards for young instrumentalists, singers and composers in the nation" (Chicago Tribune).

Critic Reviews

Customer Reviews

Submit Customer Review

Thank You For Submitting Your Review. Our Team will evaluate and post your review soon.

Captcha Image

Program Notes

Album Details

Total Time: 54:45

Production Credits
Producer: James Ginsburg
Engineer: Bill Maylone 
Recorded: May 5 and 6, July 7, and September 17, 2008 in the Fay and Daniel Levin Performance Studio, WFMT, Chicago Chicago Steinway Piano
Steinway Piano Technician: Charles Terr
Art Direction: Adam Fleishman -
Front Cover: Photo of Billy Collins by Steven Kovich -

© 2009 Cedille Records/Cedille Chicago

Support Cedille