Champs Hill HR 071
Songs of Home – Njabulo Madlala
The South African baritone and 2010 Kathleen Ferrier Award winner Njabulo Madlala makes his debut on Champs Hill Records. Songs of Home is a reflection of a journey from the townships of South Africa to the world of classical music and song. It is inspired by the South African Songbook and songs which his grandmother used to sing. Njabulo Madlala describes it as ‘life’s journey without boundaries’, drawing on ‘songs I heard and took to bed with me every night, songs I heard from Miriam Makeba, Sibongile Khumalo, and Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau’. This CD celebrates the intense beauty of music, the unique harmonies and rhythms of Africa meeting those of Schubert, Schumann, and Strauss, the click sounds spoken by the Zulu and Xhosa people of South Africa meeting the English composers Vaughan Williams, Howells, and Quilter.
"Madlala’s debut solo CD mixes Schubert, Schumann and Quilter with songs from his native South African tradition, some ithe the ’click’ sounds of the Xhosa language. A unique and engaging recital." ****
Terry Blain - BBC Music magazine (Brief Notes section) - February 2014
"A very impressive recital ... The young South African’s winning personality shines through in every bar, be it lieder, English song or traditional works from his homeland. His response to text is keen; his voice is a powerful instrument, used sensitively with a vivid use of colour, especially in Strauss and Schumann. With fine accompaniment, this is warmly recommended." *****
Guy Weatherall - Classical Music magazine - January 2014