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Poetic License 100 Poems/100 Performers Soundtrack

5 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Soundtrack, April 2, 2010
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Editorial Reviews


Poetry, the most ancient literary art, comes alive here through the most modern of technologies. Nothing beats the sound of the human voice, and nothing reminds us so beautifully of the music as well as the words of the poem as the variety of voices assembled on these discs. The performers on this compilation come in all sizes and shapes, in all vocal tones and timbres. Listeners will be delighted to discover poems they have not heard before. They will be astonished to hear, as if for the first time, old chestnuts that burst into bloom again through unexpected renditions. Best of all, they will be reminded of poems they once knew but have forgotten. Give these cds to everyone you love, especially to those who think they don t like poetry. You will change their lives. --Willard Spiegelman, Hughes Professor of English at Southern Methodist University; editor-in-chief of The Southwest Review; scholar of poetry; author, most recently of, Seven Pleasures: Essays on Ordinary Happiness.

When I was an undergraduate, an English professor said, in passing, a poem a day keeps the doctor away. He meant, I assume, that being regularly exposed to the best that has been thought and written is a universal medicine. This collection helps bring poetry off the page and back into the ear, where it belongs, and hearing it read with such skill is a constant revelation. I have not found myself ever, for instance, since I was forced to in college, deciding to sit down and read Tennyson or Milton, but hearing them read has made me realize what I've been missing. This is the best of the best, read by the best of the best. I plan on listening to this CD every day on my commute and saving a bundle on my mental health bills. --Tom Lutz s books include Doing Nothing, A History of Loafers, Loungers, Slackers, and Bums in America, Crying: A Natural and Cultural History of Tears; American Nervousness, 1903: An Anecdotal History; and Cosmopolitan Vistas. Professor Lutz has taught at

The performers on this CD illuminate the mystery. Beneath the trembling, faux enthusiasm of Donna Lynne Champlin s reading of, A Job Application, or the steely reserve of Charles Busch s, My Last Duchess, there lies the truth of the situation, like a beautiful rock that s been polished smooth by all of the people who have heard before and who have understood. Here we are in 2010: living without the benefit of a unifying popular culture, but with a culture frayed into a million semi-connected strands. How sobering, how comforting it is to be reminded of the notes that bind us. When you hear Emily Skinner say: Love can not fill the thickened lung with breath, Nor clean the blood, nor set the fractured bone; Yet many a man is making friends with death Even as I speak, for lack of love alone. Then you know that is true. And that is enough. --Laurie Winer s reviews have appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The LA Times, to name a few.

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Eating Poetry (Linda Balgord)
  2. Music (G. Roven)
  3. Wild Nights! (Patti LuPone)
  4. Love Is... (Emily Skinner)
  5. Sonnet 17 (Joanna Gleason)
  6. Sonnet 19 (Brent Barrett)
  7. I Would Like to... (Barbara Feldon)
  8. The Cinnamon Peeler (Michael Cerveris)
  9. Love Looks Not... (Christine Baranski)
  10. Hang There (John Belhamm)
  11. i thank God... (Judy Kaye)
  12. Lovers... (Mike Doyle)
  13. If You... (Bobby Steggert)
  14. Soft Knife (Judith Light)
  15. Meeting at Night (Charles Kimbrough)
  16. Last Love (Michele Pawk)
  17. To the Harbormaster (Chandler Williams)
  18. Music (Roven)
  19. Daffodils (Catherine Zeta-Jones)
  20. Composed Upon... (Carole Shelley)
  21. Aedh Wishes for the... (Ceiran O'Reilly)
  22. Renascence (Christine Ebersole)
  23. A Supermarket in CA (Michael Rupert)
  24. The Sun Underfoot... (Nany Opel)
  25. Some Lines... (Reed Birney)
  26. Lake and Maple (Brenda Wehle)
  27. The House Was Quiet... (Lauren Kennedy)
  28. Fern Hill (Philip Casnoff)
  29. Poem for My Daugher (Barry Humphries)
  30. Music (Roven)
  31. Poetry (Roxanne Hart)
  32. Sonnets to Orpheus (Ann Hampton Calloway)
  33. Contexts (Douglas Sills)

Disc: 2

  1. Music (Roven)
  2. Walrus and the Carpenter (Jason Alexander)
  3. Vespers (Cynthia Nixon)
  4. Psalm... (Peter Freidman)
  5. The Poison Tester (Matthew Schechter)
  6. A Little Tooth (Alan Campbell)
  7. You Are Old, Father William (Amanda Green)
  8. The Nap Taker (Ramona Mallory)
  9. Blue Football (Tony Walton)
  10. Music (Roven)
  11. A Dog... (Cady Huffman)
  12. Bottom's Dream (Gregory Jbara)
  13. New Yorkers (Paige Davis)
  14. Self-Improvement (Daniel Okulitch)
  15. Beautiful Women (Michael Minarik)
  16. My Last Duchess (Charles Busch)
  17. Grosz (Lauren Flanigan)
  18. Sun and Fun (Edward Hibbert)
  19. Life Stories (Moises Kaufmann)
  20. To a Friend... (Peter Paige)
  21. Song of a Hopeful Heart (Dean Pitchford)
  22. Die While You're Alive (Sam Robards)
  23. Afternoon in School (Tom McGowan)
  24. Music (Roven)
  25. Annabel Lee (Donald Corren)
  26. Rime of the... (John Rubinstein)
  27. Ulysses (Chris Sarandon)
  28. Music (Roven)
  29. Myth (Francesca Faridany)
  30. An Ancient Gesture (Michael Learned)
  31. Eve--Paradise Lost (Veanne Cox)
  32. Mary (Nancy Anderson)
  33. To His Coy Mistress (Guy Paul)
  34. The Job Interview (Donna Lynne Champlin)
  35. she lived (Lynn Sherr)
  36. Love Song (Dorothy Parker)
  37. A Prayer... (Maria Tucci)

Disc: 3

  1. Music (Roven)
  2. But I Can't (Tyne Daly)
  3. On Behalf of Trees (Zoe Caldwell)
  4. The Road Less Traveled (David Garrison)
  5. Any Fool (Harriet Harris)
  6. Barking (Deidra O'Connell)
  7. Sonnet (Glenn Seven Allen)
  8. Terra Incognita (Penny Fuller)
  9. To What You Said (Douglas Carpenter)
  10. If (James Barbour)
  11. Music (G. Roven)
  12. Waiting for the Barbarians (Daniel Davis)
  13. Correspondence (Kathleen Turner)
  14. An Undoing World (Alice Playten)
  15. Bearer of Evil Tidings (Ed Dixon)
  16. Fire and Ice (Marc Kudisch)
  17. The Second Coming (Keith McDermott)
  18. Tommy (Michael York)
  19. Dulce et... (Paul Schoeffler)
  20. Music (G. Roven)
  21. The Walk (Harriet Walter)
  22. When I Have Fears (JoBeth Williams)
  23. Those Winter... (Danny Burstein)
  24. Men at 40 (Paul Provenza)
  25. Conversion (Jeff McCarthy)
  26. A Valediction (Claire Lautier)
  27. Doctor Frolic (James Patrick Stewart)
  28. The Day is Done (Florence Henderson)
  29. Elegy in... (George S. Irving)
  30. Spring and Fall (Richard Thomas)
  31. Dirge... (Carolyn McCormick)
  32. Otherwise (Melissa Errico)
  33. When You Are... (Byron Jennings)
  34. Remember (Rebecca Luker)
  35. I Could Not Stop... (Kate Mulgrew)
  36. On Death (Chuck Cooper)
  37. Mezzo Cammin (Chip Zien)
  38. Not Waving... (Roberta Maxwell)
  39. Crossing the Bar (Louis Zorich)
  40. Invictus (Dana Ivey)
  41. Ye elves (Len Cariou)
  42. In My Craft (Geraint Wyn Davies)
  43. Our Revels (Patrick Paige)

Product Details

  • Audio CD (April 2, 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 3
  • Format: Soundtrack
  • Label: GPR Records
  • ASIN: B0039PXL3Q
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #727,008 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Glen Roven is not only an important American composer and a producer of a significant series of recorded releases from GPR Records, he is also a lover of poetry. Yes, he naturally as a composer of songs and works for the voice solo and in in groups (in addition to his orchestral and chamber compositions) depends on the poems of poets from centuries ago to the present. But here in this treasurable collection POETIC LICENSE he has somehow gathered some of our most famous actors and actresses from film and stage to record the 100 poems contained in these 3 CDs. The performances are dramatic and viable as an art form.

The artists include Jason Alexander, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Cynthia Nixon, Christine Baranski, Zoe Caldwell, Tyne Daly, Joanna Gleason, Florence Henderson, Michael Learned, Peter Paige, Judith Light, Patti LuPone, Kate Mulgrew, Kathleen Turner, Michael York, Linda Balgord, Judy kaye, Chandler Williams, Christine Ebersole, Chris Sarandon, Tony Walton, Len Cariou, Richard Thomas, Dana Ivey, Daniel Okulitch and many more. The poems range from Milton, Coleridge,Tennyson, Shakespeare, Wordsworth to Poe, Millay, Emily Dickinson, Stephen Spender, Yeats, Rilke, Dylan Thomas to Mark Strand, Pablo Neruda, ee cummings, Paul Monette, Ginsberg, Tennessee Williams - and that is only a short list. The speakers make music of the poetry. Glen Roven adds his own piano interludes to offer a break in the sequences. It all works so well that it is a wonder a project like this has not been done before.

For those who love reading poetry that luxury will be embellished by this extraordinary set of CDs. And this is the most successful selection of both poems and actors one could imagine. Grady Harp, February 12
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Format: Audio CD
When a poet writes a Poem, s/he writes it for himself to understand and ordinary people like us are not physically capable of understanding the poem in such a manner. Like a manuscript, it takes a performer to rip a poem apart and then piece it back together and get inside of it. The performers give meaning to the poem in unimaginable ways, as they do with various types of text. The way in which your favorite celebrities such as Jason Alexander and Catherine Zeta-Jones convey the poems is captivating and thought provoking. They express it in a way that only a performer could, not even the poet. Just listen to a few tracks and I guarantee you will want to hear more.
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When people think poems, they automatically brace themselves to hear something boring. But that most certainly isn't the case with "Poetic License". I am a student in high school and I have to say that this CD shines a new light on poetry and how it's presented. Bringing all these Stars together and throwing a bunch of poems in the mix is a refreshing way to listen to the beautiful words of poets.

I highly recommend it.

Check it out. A must buy.

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