The baritone Roderick Williams has sung Schubert’s Winterreise in both German and English, but has long specialised in the English repertory. It was a logical step, therefore, to come up with An English Winter Journey – namely a sequence of English songs that traces a similar arc to that of Schubert [...] read all

With Julius Drake contributing exquisite accompaniments, one felt that De Niese truly inhabited the world and emotions of the lovesick herding girl.

Ian Bostridge, Steven Isserlis and Julius Drake, Wigmore Hall, London — review

Hannah Nepil

It came to the fore in Britten’s realisations of Bach’s Five Spiritual Songs, which mostly speak of approaching death. They certainly suited Bostridge’s ascetic approach. His was a beautifully pared-dow [...] read all

In a group by Hugo Wolf, imagination and execution began to gel, greatly inspired by the rapport with her unfailingly eloquent and supportive pianist Julius Drake. “Um Mittternacht” was beautifully restrained and “Verborgenheit” nobly shaped, while “Nimmersatte Liebe” nailed the poet’s wordly-wise s [...] read all

For its most ambitious series yet, the Oxford Lieder Festival – held every autumn since 2002 – has given itself over to The Schubert Project, nothing less than Britain’s first complete survey of Schubert’s 600-plus songs. Its programmes also venture beyond those songs, to explore, in true festival s [...] read all

Ian Bostridge and Sophie Daneman, accompanied by Julius Drake, made an almost too contrasting couple in this Schumann recital, says Ivan Hewett
4 out of 5 stars

By Ivan Hewett

Middle Temple Hall, the setting for a little-known but first-rate concert series, is one of those London spaces that [...] read all

Winterreisse CD: Gerald Finley and Julius Drake
Gramophone, April 2014 (Geoffrey Norris)

The affecting, chilling bleakness of ‘Gute Nacht’ immediately suggests that this is going to be a Winterreise of vision and searching intensity. And so it proves, with the journey described in dark, dramatic [...] read all

Winterreise CD: Gerald Finley and Julius Drake
Sunday 16 March 2014 (Fiona Maddocks)

Two new recordings, released within weeks, by top baritones performing Schubert’s great winter’s journey song cycle should deter no one from buying both. No household can have too many. While Jonas Kaufmann ’s [...] read all

From Tender to Blustery to Haunted
Gerald Finley and Julius Drake in the ‘Winterreise’ Cycle


The Canadian baritone Gerald Finley and the British pianist Julius Drake gave a recital at Zankel Hall on Thursday that was the final stop of a North Americ [...] read all


Wigmore Hall, London
5 out of 5

Though its outings are rare, Hanns Eisler's Hollywood Songbook is one of the key works of 20th-century music. Written in Los Angeles between 1942 and 1944, it is at once an unsparing analysis of Eisler's emotional reactions to his exile from Nazi [...] read all


Wigmore Hall, London 4 / 5 stars

Tim Ashley

Pianist and accompanist Julius Drake is currently artistic director of a Wigmore series called Perspectives, the aim of which is to re-examine the song repertory he has been performing for more than 30 years. For the lat [...] read all

Winterreise (Wigmore Hall Live) CD, Alice Coote & Julius Drake

4 / 5 stars
Tim Ashley

Despite its universality, Winterreise is usually deemed the province of male singers. Women have always sung it, however, and Alice Coote now adds her name to the distinguished list of female interpreters th [...] read all

If you were assembling the chambermusic equivalent of a fantasy football team, chances are that the oboist Nicholas Daniel, the pianist Julius Drake and the violinist Jacqueline Shave would all be high on the list. Add the wonderful Caroline Dearnley on cello and Clare Finnimore on viola and you hav [...] read all

Kirchschlager/Henschel/Drake at Wigmore Hall
5 out of 5
Tim Ashley , The Guardian, Tuesday 8 January 2013

Hugo Wolf doesn't get better than this. Part of Julius Drake's ongoing exploration of the Goethe and Mörike Songbooks, the evening found two of the great Wolf interpreters, Dietrich Hensche [...] read all

…with the peerless Julius Drake at the piano………

Drake was on superlative form: his accompaniment to Schubert’s Im Fruhling told us everything we needed, the rippling semi-quavers suddenly darkened as reality broke into the poet’s deluded picture of contented love. Throughout the night, Drake’s [...] read all

Britten Canticles at the Wigmore Hall
By Richard Morrison, 2 December 2012

More than 20 pieces by Benjamin Britten were premiered at the Wigmore Hall. So perhaps we can forgive the venue for starting its celebration of the 100th anniversary of Britten’s birth a year early. The string quartets co [...] read all

Gerald Finley & Julius Drake. Schumann: Liederkreis (Hyperion)
Lucy Beckett, International Record Review, October 2012

What is a song cycle? Beethoven was the first to use the term Liederkreis, to describe his An die ferne Geliebte, but both this set of songs and Schubert’s Die schöne Müllerin [...] read all

Angelika Kirchschlager, Ian Bostridge & Julius Drake, Teatro Zarzuelas, Madrid, 15 October 2012
Juan Ángel Vela del Campo, Madrid, 15 October 2012
Translated below

XIX CICLO DE LIED Hugo Wolf: Spanisches Liederbuch
Oro, incienso y mirra
Estos nuevos reyes magos del canto con a [...] read all

Angelika Kirchschlager & Julius Drake. Liszt: The Complete Songs, Vol 2.
Richard Wigmore, Gramophone, September 2012

Kirchschlager steps in for second volume of Liszt songs. A prime virtue of Hyperion’s latest song intégrale is that it precisely documents Liszt’s bewildering variety of revision [...] read all

Gerald Finley & Julius Drake. Schumann: Liederkreis (Hyperion)
Andrew Clements, The Guardian, 27 September 2012

The two Liederkreis, the sets of songs Schumann actually called song-cycles, are not narrative sequences in the way Dichterliebe and Frauenliebe und Leben are. Instead, each set is co [...] read all

Angelika Kirchschlager & Julius Drake. Liszt: The Complete Songs, Vol 2.
Tim Ashley, The Guardian 12 July 2012

This is the second instalment of Hyperion's retrospective of Liszt's complete songs, the brainchild of pianist Julius Drake, and one of the most important recording projects of recent [...] read all

Matthew Polenzani & Julius Drake Wigmore Live CD
Drew Minter, Opera News, February 2012, Vol 76, No 8

In their live recital from Wigmore Hall, both Matthew Polenzani and Julius Drake display great poise. They evoke recitalists of past generations, unafraid to linger Lehmann- or Moore-like as the [...] read all

Gerald Finley & Julius Drake at Alice Tully Hall, NY

Allan Kozzin for the New York Times, 28 February 2012
Displaying Acting Skills to Go With Vocal Ones

As anyone who has tried it can tell you, singing is an acting job, even if you are not in costume or on a theater stage. To project a song [...] read all

Anna Lucia Richter, Christoph Prégardien & Julius Drake, Wigmore Hall, January 2012

George Hall, The Guardian, 12 January 2012
4/5 stars

In terms of their musical subtlety and the complex interaction between words and notes, the songs of Hugo Wolf offer some of the greatest challenges in the [...] read all

Bejun Mehta & Julius Drake: Down by the Salley Gardens CD
Michael Johnson,, 22 January 2012

We associate the counter-tenor voice with works composed in the 18th century or earlier, or with specific and rather unusual roles such as Oberon in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Th [...] read all

Alice Coote & Julius Drake perform Winterreise at the Wigmore Hall, 26 January 2012
Melanie Eskanazi, MusicOMH, 27 January 2012

There are really only two ways to present Winterreise, the greatest of all song cycles; either you are the forlorn outcast who cannot fathom why you should have been si [...] read all

Gerald Finley & Julius Drake at Wigmore Hall
Andrew Clements, The Guardian, 30 September 2011
Look Down, Fair Moon, Huw Watkins's new song cycle for Gerald Finley and Julius Drake, takes its title from a poem by Walt Whitman, the first of six works with lunar associations that Watkins sets. But th [...] read all

Bejun Mehta & Julius Drake: Down by the Salley Gardens CD
Fiona Maddocks, The Observer, 11 September 2011

The American Bejun Mehta, particularly well known for the more predictable Baroque countertenor repertoire, now steps elegantly into the field of early-ish 20th-century English song. These 2 [...] read all

Bejun Mehta & Julius Drake: Down by the Salley Gardens CD
Andrew Clements, The Guardian, 1 September 2011


Bejun Mehta certainly can’t be faulted on his eclecticism in his whistle-stop tour of English song with pianist Julius Drake; his selection of 23 settings ranges chronologicall [...] read all

Bejun Mehta & Julius Drake: Down by the Salley Gardens CD
Kenneth Walton, The Scotsman, 13 September 2011

Many of these pieces have featured in Bejun Mehta’s past visits to the Edinburgh Festival. He has an extraordinary countertenor voice, which has the wholesome ripeness of the female mezzo so [...] read all

Gerald Finley & Julius Drake: The Ballad Singer CD
Andrew Stewart, Classic FM Magazine, August 2011

The Music: The ballad, which left its mark on German music and English drawing rooms, is represented here by such cornerstone examles as Loewe’s Edward and Schubert’s Erlkönig. Sullivan’s Lost C [...] read all

Gerald Finley & Julius Drake: The Ballad Singer CD
Jeremy Nicholas, Gramophone, August 2011

Romantic ballads, ranging from camp and colourful to utterly spellbinding.

This collection of strophic ballads has its fair share of the Gothic and Grand Guignol, most of it concerned with death, near- [...] read all

Gerald Finley & Julius Drake: The Ballad Singer CD
John T Hughes, International Record Review, August 2011

When I saw the title of this CD, ‘The Ballad Singer’, I thought it would be a disc devoted wholly to British ballads, especially as the painting reproduced on the front of the booklet is Fr [...] read all

Gerald Finley & Julius Drake: The Ballad Singer CD
Alex Baran, The Whole Note, August 2011

Singers crave novel material for their recordings: obscure works, cherished favourites… whatever it takes to create tempting new song packages. Baritone Gerald Finley’s recent release samples the Ballad re [...] read all

Gerald Finley & Julius Drake: The Ballad Singer CD
Hilary Finch, BBC Music Magazine, August 2011
Performance: Four out of Five Stars
Recording: Four out of Five Stars

A new idea for the anthology disc: here is Gerald Finley, in his vocal prime, as balladeer – telling tales of misadventure and [...] read all

Iestyn Davies/Julius Drake, Wigmore Hall
(Rated 5/ 5 )

Michael Church, The Independent, Wednesday 20 July 2011

It’s testimony to the extraordinary interest which counter-tenor Iestyn Davies now arouses that his weekday lunchtime recital was packed.

And for this final concert of Radio 3’s W [...] read all

Julius Drake: Songs Without Words CD
Jessica Duchen, BBC Music Magazine

Julius Drake is one of Britain’s most sought-after pianists for chamber music and Lieder. It’s a treat to hear him take centre stage, and for this solo CD he has compiled a very personal programme of short pieces closely rel [...] read all

Gerald Finley & Julius Drake: The Ballad Singer CD
Richard Morrison, The Times, 18 June 2011

Four out of Five Stars

Listen to these wonderfully melodramatic, mostly Victorian ballads by candlelight in a haunted house. They range from well-known tales of the macabre (Schubert’s Erlkönig, Hugo [...] read all

Julius Drake: Songs Without Words CD
John Terauds,

Highly respected English accompanist Julius Drake has released a solo disc of 17 quiet, solo-piano pieces that are a sort of aural comfort food.

This is not technically challenging music, nor is it loud or brash. Rather, these qui [...] read all

Julius Drake: Songs Without Words CD
Patsy Morita,

Performance: 4½ out of 5 stars
Sound: 5 out of 5 stars
From the title Songs Without Words, one might guess that Julius Drake’s 2011 album of piano music was either a) all Mendelssohn or b) all Romantic miniatures with a similar mo [...] read all

Julius Drake: Songs Without Words CD
Peter Grahame Woolf, Musical Pointers

One of the best British song accompanists ever, Julius Drake’s first solo CDis a personal record of his early years at the piano, reminding himself (any many of us who played the piano as children) of early favourites whi [...] read all

Julius Drake: Songs Without Words CD
Peter Kristian Mose, The Whole Note

Julius Drake is a sought-after English pianist who devotes most of his career to accompanying singers, typically intelligent art song recitalists of the calibre of tenor Ian Bostridge and Canadian baritone Gerald Finley. He [...] read all

A Swagger and Some Bluster for the Sake of Telling Stories

That the tenor Matthew Polenzani sang Schubert’s song cycle “Die Schöne Müllerin” so beautifully on Sunday afternoon at Alice Tully Hall was no surprise. This fine American artist, a regular at the Metropolitan Opera, most recently as Ern [...] read all

Katerina Karnéus & Julius Drake, Wigmore Hall, 7 April 2011

Hilary Finch, The Times, 13 April 2011
The rustle of scarlet silk, a shoulder-blade tattoo, a lustrous voise recreating the smouldering sensuaility of a summer night with its cries and its whispers… so why wasn’t the Wigmore Hall sold o [...] read all

Gerald Finley & Julius Drake: Benjamin Britten: Songs & Proverbs of William Blake.

Judith Malafronte, Opera News, April 2011

Benjamin Britten's output for tenor often shades his important works for other voice types. Canadian baritone Gerald Finley, a celebrated Owen Wingrave, doesn't allow g [...] read all

Franz Liszt: The Complete Songs, Vol. 1. Matthew Polenzani & Julius Drake
David Shengold, Opera News, Feb 2011

American tenor Matthew Polenzani has made a career the old-fashioned way — by singing well. With a generally sweet, limpid lyric sound, an ease in piano passages and refined musical imp [...] read all

Christianne Stotijn & Julius Drake, Wigmore Hall, 22 January 2011

Michael Church, The Independent, 25 January 2011

When Shostakovich set six poems by Marina Tsvetayeva for voice and piano in 1973, he completed a chain of human suffering in which he himself was final link.

Worn down by rele [...] read all

Gerald Finley & Julius Drake, Wigmore Hall
John E de Wald, Opera Britannia, 8 November 2010

The Wigmore Hall has been celebrating the bicentenary of Schumann’s birth with a series of concerts aptly entitled Annus Mirabilis: The Complete Songs of 1840. 1840 marked a year in Schumann’ [...] read all

Franz Liszt: The Complete Songs, Vol. 1. Matthew Polenzani & Julius Drake
Tim Ashley, The Guardian, 12 November 2010

This stupendous disc, issued ahead of the Liszt bicentenary next year, marks the start of Hyperion's survey of his complete songs, still a grey area for many despite p [...] read all

Matthew Polenzani & Julius Drake. Liszt, The Complete Songs, Vol 1
Patrick Rucker, International Record Review, November 2010

Nowadays singers are more likely to have a handful of Liszt songs in their repertoires than was the case as recently as 20 years ago. Yet these wonderful works, occupying [...] read all

Simon Keenlyside & Julius Drake, Temple Church, London
Edward Seckerson, Saturday, 23 October 2010

There were moments in Schubert’s song Verklärung (“Transfiguration”) where the splendour of the declamation and the whispering of spirits from the next world seemed almost too vivid to be [...] read all

Gerald Finley & Julius Drake, Queen's Hall Edinburgh
Carol Main, The Scotsman, 26 August 2010

In a generously filled programme at the Queen’s Hall yesterday morning, Gerald Finley and Julius Drake testified to the versatility of not only themselves as performers, but something of the [...] read all

Gerald Finley & Julius Drake, Queen's Hall Edinburgh

Simon Thompson, Musicweb International (Seen & Heard), 27 August 2010

It is rare to find a song recital as dramatically involving as this one. Gerald Finley is already well known as a great actor on the operatic stage, but I can’t remember t [...] read all

Zoltán Kodály: Cello Sonata & other works
Natalie Clein and Julius Drake
Andrew Clark, Financial Times, 13 August 2010

Zoltán Kodaly’s lasting memorial will be his work in music education, the impact of which is still felt today. In contrast to Bartók, his compatriot, contemporary and fellow co [...] read all

Benjamin Britten: Songs & Proverbs of William Blake. Gerald Finley and Julius Drake

CLASSICAL CD OF THE WEEK: Ivan Hewett, The Telegraph, 10 July 2010

Britten's settings of Blake's poems were written for the German baritone Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau and his recording from 1965 carries massive [...] read all

Benjamin Britten: Songs & Proverbs of William Blake. Gerald Finley and Julius Drake

FIVE STARS: Andrew Clark, Financial Times, 19 June 2010

Britten’s oeuvre is so dominated by the music he composed for Peter Pears, his long-time partner and creative muse, that it’s easy to forget he was inspir [...] read all

Zoltán Kodály: Cello Sonata & other works
Natalie Clein and Julius Drake

John Allison, BBC Music Magazine, July 2010

Zoltan Kodály’s long life (1882-1967) is mirrored in the wide span of works on this excellent new release. More than half a cent [...] read all

Benjamin Britten: Songs & Proverbs of William Blake. Gerald Finley and Julius Drake

CD OF THE WEEK: The Times, 13 June 2010

The Canadian baritone has already impressed with his outstanding diction in three albums of North American song (two devoted to Charles Ives, one to Samuel Barber) for Hy [...] read all

Benjamin Britten: Songs & Proverbs of William Blake. Gerald Finley and Julius Drake

4 STARS: Andrew Clements, The Guardian, 3 June 2010

The early song cycle on poems by Walter de la Mare, Tit for Tat, together with a motley collection of folk song arrangements and one-offs (including a setting [...] read all

Zoltán Kodály: Cello Sonata & other works
Natalie Clein and Julius Drake

Geoffrey Norris, The Telegraph, 25 June 2010

Zoltán Kodály’s Sonata for Solo Cello represents one of those daunting summits that cellists feel ineluctably drawn to conquer, and Natalie Clein does so here with [...] read all

John Steane, Opera Now, May/June 2010

They get younger all the time. Julius Drake has long been counted among the three or four pianists/accompanists of his generation, but it still may come as something of a surprise to find he has arrived the grand age of 50, and as such is celebrant at a gala [...] read all

David Gordon Duke, Vancouver Sun, 7 May 2010

Music review: Singer Gerald Finley, pianist Julius Drake shine in international classical recital

Singers of bass-baritone Gerald Finley’s stature have great intrinsic appeal, but the classical song recital is an exacting process.

Thursday’s reci [...] read all

"Vocal recitals don’t get better than this."

Elissa Poole, Globe and Mail, 7 May 2010

As good as singing gets

Baritone Gerald Finley is one of this country’s greatest artists, and we don’t see enough of him. An Ottawa native who has long lived in England, Finley has won multiple Gramophone [...] read all

Lloyd Dykk,, 7 May 2010

Canadian baritone Gerald Finley unforgettable at the Chan Centre

The Canadian baritone Gerald Finley is taking the world by storm and he recently got a rave from the New Yorker. That was no surprise to those who’ve heard him sing here before. He returned to [...] read all

Martin Kettle, The Guardian, 20 May 2010

4 stars

Gerald Finley’s voice and career are in their prime. This recital showed why: power, darkness and intensity in the first, Germanic, half of the programme; lighter-toned simplicity and a touch of the absurd in the Franco-British second half; an u [...] read all

Zoltán Kodály: Cello Sonata & other works
Natalie Clein and Julius Drake

4 stars
Andrew Clements, The Guardian, 27 May 2010

The point of Natalie Clein’s collection is the epic Sonata for unaccompanied cello, which is not only one of Zoltán Kodály’s greatest achievements, but also arguably th [...] read all

Vivien Schwitzer, New York Times, 1 April 2010

Ian Bostridge, the English tenor, offering a sampler of the songs of Brahms at Alice Tully Hall, accompanied by the pianist Julius Drake.

The English tenor Ian Bostridge commented recently in a radio interview that the lieder tradition is closer t [...] read all

By Jason Victor Serinus, San Francisco Classical Voice, 2 April 2010

Song at Its Finest

Mezzo-soprano Alice Coote is a great artist. In an unforgettable San Francisco Performances recital Friday in Herbst Theatre, which also marked her local recital debut, Coote and her equally brilliant accom [...] read all

By Steven Winn, San Francisco Chronicle, 5 April 2010

Vivid visit to seldom-heard English songs

Every word she sang Friday at the Herbst Theatre was English. But mezzo-soprano Alice Coote’s beguiling San Francisco Performances recital unfolded as a tour of infrequently visited territory.

Wh [...] read all

Vivien Schweitzer, New York Times, 6 April 2010

Tenderness and Flair for British Composers

The superb British mezzo-soprano Alice Coote has been justly acclaimed for her operatic trouser roles. So it seemed fitting that for her recital at Zankel Hall on Monday evening she wore tight black trou [...] read all

Tchaikovsky Romances. Christianne Stotijn & Julius Drake

Andrew Mellor, Classic FM magazine, April 2009
Disc of the Month

Christianne casts a spell
Through this bewitching recital from Christianne Stotijn, Andrew Mellor discovers a side of Tchaikovsky often hidden from public view

 [...] read all

Peter Dobrin, Phladelphia Inquirer, 11 March 2010

Gerald Finley and Julius Drake in the Perelman Theater, Philadelphia

If Gerald Finley hadn’t been a bass-baritone, he might have ended up a particularly charismatic storyteller. Of course, as a singer he’s both, but not all vocalists subscribe [...] read all

"Finley and masterful accompanist Julius Drake meshed perfectly."

Marsha Dubrow, 18 March 2010

If Gerald Finley had simply stood there and sung at last night’s Austrian Embassy recital, that would have been glorious enough.

But in addition to his rich, lush voice, the baritone’s powerful, [...] read all

"...splendidly partnered by pianist Julius Drake."

Anna Carol Dudley, San Francisco Classical Voice, 21 March 2010

Stellar Singing By Ian Bostridge
Ian Bostridge is a master singer of German lieder, and he brought Schubert’s Winterreise to UC Berkeley’s Zellerbach Hall Sunday afternoon, splen [...] read all

Tchaikovsky Romances. Christianne Stotijn & Julius Drake

David Nice, BBC Music Magazine, March 2009
Performance: Five out of five stars
Recording: Five out of five stars

Don’t be disconcerted by the unconventional approach to line in the relatively familiar song which begins this rec [...] read all

Alice Coote and Julius Drake at the Wigmore Hall
Four stars
by Hilary Finch, 17 February 2010

Life is like a little strip of pavement over an abyss. Virginia Woolf wrote the words; the Minnesotan octogenarian Dominick Argento set them to music; and Alice Coote and Julius Drake brought them to [...] read all

Tchaikovsky Romances
Christianne Stotijn & Julius Drake

Gramophone Editor's Choice, February 2009

An album to remind one of the treasures of Russian song. Remember that wonderful Sergei Leiferkus Mussorgsky song series? But I digress. The ever more impressive Christianne Stotijn invests thi [...] read all

Tchaikovsky Romances. Christianne Stotijn & Julius Drake

Patrick O’Connor, Gramophone, 9 February 2009

As the penultimate track on this very beautiful recital, Christianne Stotijn and Julius Drake perform “Can it be day?”, the song that was once known as “Pour toi”. This was recorded long ago [...] read all

Julius Drake 50th Birthday Concert at Wigmore Hall ,
By Rupert Christiansen
04 Jan 2010

It’s over forty years now since the accompanist Gerald Moore took centre-stage at the Festival Hall for his final live recital, joined by Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, Victoria de Los Angeles and Dietrich Fischer [...] read all

Tchaikovsky Romances. Christianne Stotijn & Julius Drake

The Times, 16 January 2009

Stotijn loses nothing in comparison with ghosts from the past. Her voice is a full-blooded mezzo but steady and true, without a hint of that vibrato that can often disturb the line in Slavonic singers....the pi [...] read all

Tchaikovsky Romances. Christianne Stotijn & Julius Drake

Financial Times, 17 January 2009
Four stars

For anyone reared on his symphonies and concertos, the quality and quantity of Tchaikovsky’s songs can come as a surprise. Many sound like operatic scenes, in which the yearning romant [...] read all

Julius Drake Birthday Gala, Wigmore Hall
Wednesday, 23 December 2009
Written by Edward Seckerson

The term “accompanist” is no longer acceptable, no longer “politically correct” in musical circles, not least Lieder. It’s hard to imagine now that the relationship between a singer and his or her [...] read all

Julius Drake's 50th Birthday Concert

Julius Drake Birthday Gala - Wigmore Hall, 22 December 2009

Musicians' birthday concerts can be smugly self-congratulatory or so featherweight they're meaningless to anyone outside the enchanted circle. But Julius Drake's fiftieth was hardcore. Just like an [...] read all

Schumann songs at the Barbican, review
Thomas Quasthoff's concert series at the Barbican came to end with glorious singing from him, Ian Bostridge, Angelika Kirchschlager and Dorothea Roschmann. Rating: * * * *

By Ivan Hewett

For the past year that tremendous bass-baritone Thomas Quasthoff [...] read all

Composer Gavin Bryars once found his works filed in a record shop under "jazz, classical, ambient and easy listening". His new song cycle, commissioned by the third Leeds Leider festival, could be called a bold entry into the genre of uneasy listening.
Bryars's setting of four poems by the Scottish [...] read all

Hilary Finch

Every two years in Leeds one long weekend is devoted to “filling the city with song!” Both the exclamation mark in the slogan, and the little plus sign in the festival’s name are significant. For this, despite its short duration, is one of the most exuberant and far-reaching festival [...] read all


WHAT the Edinburgh International Festival music programme has lacked so far is a good old-fashioned, dyed-in-the-wool sensation.

Yesterday it got one from, of all sources, a morning recital byAmerican counter tenor Bejun Mehta, flawlessly accompanied by pianist Julius Drake.

The [...] read all

Songs of Ravel. Gerald Finley & Julius Drake

James Inverne, Gramophone August 2009

Evocative performances of these exquisitely crafted miniatures

Another month, another Gerald Finley recital disc, another Editor’s Choice. Par for the course for this most splendid interpret [...] read all

Songs of Ravel. Gerald Finley & Julius Drake

Christopher Dingle, BBC Music Magazine, July 2009

When it comes to Ravel’s songs, there is hardly an embarrassment of riches in the catalogue. While there is an Aladdin’s cave of releases featuring his orchestral, chamber and piano works [...] read all

Songs of Ravel. Gerald Finley & Julius Drake

Hugh Canning, The Sunday Times, 28 June 2009

After outstanding recitals of Charles Ives, Samuel Barber and Schumann, the Canadian baritone and his regular pianist turn their attention to Ravel, a great but still undervalued songw [...] read all

Songs of Ravel. Gerald Finley & Julius Drake

International Record Review

Ravel was not, it seems, an instinctive songwriter, but rather a composer who generally wrote songs to commission. So no Fauré reaching for mélodies like a dolphin delights in water or even Debussy unable to resist the ch [...] read all

Songs of Ravel. Gerald Finley & Julius Drake

Paul Gent, The Telegraph, 13 June 2009

After acclaimed recordings of Barber, Ives and Schumann, baritone Gerald Finley and pianist Julius Drake pull off another success with this disc of Ravel songs. These are for the most part works of cool restrai [...] read all

Songs of Ravel. Gerald Finley & Julius Drake

Tim Ashley, The Guardian, 12 June 2009

Art songs can be among the most self-revealing works in any composer’s output, so it’s not surprising that Ravel, among the most private of men, wrote few of them. Those we do have show him to be something of a [...] read all

Highlights of the program included an urgent rendition of “Auf der Bruck” (“On the Bruck”), enhanced by Mr. Drake’s lively playing of the vigorous piano part. He played with exemplary sensitivity throughout the evening, richly illuminating the colorful accompaniment of “Die Forelle” (“The Trout”), w [...] read all

...with the formidable pianist Julius Drake

From The Times
January 16, 2009
Christianne Stotijn/Julius Drake: Tchaikovsky Romances
Geoff Brown

Among young mezzo-sopranos, Christianne Stotijn is in a class apart; she stamps every note and word with character, and delivers her songs with a lyrical glow that considerably advances global [...] read all

Mark Padmore, Julius Drake and friends, Wigmore Hall, London

By Andrew Clark

Published: January 7 2009

The Handel, Haydn and Mendelssohn anniversaries are upon us, but the echo of the Vaughan Williams year – 2008 marked the 50th anniversary of his death – continues to reverberate. Tuesda [...] read all

Wigmore Hall, London

Erica Jeal

Ring out the old year, wring out the composer's inspiration - that's usually how the end-of-an-anniversary celebration goes. But not at the Wigmore Hall where the Vaughan Williams series curated by pianist Julius Drake carried on into 200 [...] read all

“…a really superb recital by this accomplished Canadian bass-baritone and his celebrated accompanist, Julius Drake. In recent years Gerald Finley's voice has developed more character and cutting power, and a fine dramatic edge which suits this emphatic, sometimes shocking programme very well indeed. [...] read all

Diana Damrau/ Julius Drake
Wigmore Hall, London

Tim Ashley
The Guardian, Saturday November 8 2008

The German soprano Diana Damrau has become a cult figure of late. It is easy to see why. She is very much a diva, with all the intimations of greatness and excess the word implies. Her artistry [...] read all

October 1, 2008
Hilary Finch

The borderland between art song and heart song, salon and silver screen was explored by Angelika Kirchschlager when she serenaded her Wigmore audience with songs by Schubert, Korngold and Weill.

Schubert came first and, despite Julius Drake' [...] read all

From The Times
October 22, 2008
Berkeley 60th Birthday at the Wigmore Hall
Hilary Finch

A week before the premiere of his new Ian McEwan opera, For You, Michael Berkeley celebrated his 60th birthday with a musical party at Wigmore Hall, inviting musicians who had supported him throughout his [...] read all

Schumann: Dichterliebe and other Heine songs, Finley/Drake

Andrew Clements
The Guardian, Friday September 5 2008

Buy Dichterliebe and other Heine songs now
Gerald Finley follows a series of outstanding albums of American and English song - Ives, Barber, Stanford - with his first [...] read all

Maltman/Rodgers/Drake at the Wigmore Hall

From The Times
September 15, 2008
Hilary Finch

One of the most rewarding spin-offs of Vaughan Williams's year is the exposure it is giving to his friends and contemporaries.
The Proms may have played more notes of Vaughan Williams than anyone else i [...] read all

Schumann: Dichterliebe and Other Heine Songs - the Sunday Times CD of the week

Gerald Finley (baritone), Julius Drake (piano)

Apart from the Op 24 Liederkreis, Finley’s first album of German lieder collects all of Schumann’s settings of Heinrich Heine, including four songs intended for Dicht [...] read all

Schumann: Dichterliebe and other Heine settings
Gerald Finley (baritone), Julius Drake (piano)

Hyperion CDA67676, £12.99

Doubts as to whether the world needs yet another Dichterliebe are allayed by a performance that probes the extremes of Schumann's evocation of remembered, blighted love.
[...] read all

Grieg wrote more than 180 songs, of which only a handful, exasperatingly, remain in the repertory. Language is, of course, the source of both their greatness and their neglect. Grieg's aim was to invest the Norwegian art song with the status - national, as well as aesthetic - of the German lied. Tha [...] read all

Grieg: Six Ibsen Songs Op 25; Six Lieder Op 48; Haugtussa Op 67; Melodies of the Heart Op 5
Katarina Karnéus (mezzo-soprano), Julius Drake (piano)
Hyperion CDA67670, £11.99

Belying Debussy's celebrated sideswipe ("a pink bonbon stuffed with snow"), Grieg's music is always likely to surprise t [...] read all

June 20, 2008
Gerald Finley/Julius Drake at the Wigmore Hall
Hilary Finch

Tony Harrison once wrote a memorable film-poem for BBC television called The Gaze of the Gorgon that focused on a statue of Heinrich Heine clutching the manuscript of his poem Was will die einsame Tränen?, set to music [...] read all

Gerald Finley/Julius Drake at the Wigmore Hall
Hilary Finch

Tony Harrison once wrote a memorable film-poem for BBC television called The Gaze of the Gorgon that focused on a statue of Heinrich Heine clutching the manuscript of his poem Was will die einsame Tränen?, set to music by Schumann. Th [...] read all

The Times

Andrew Kennedy/Julius Drake: The Dark Pastoral
Geoff Brown

A great deal of thought has gone into this recital reflecting on the First World War and its legacy in British song and poetry. Fine musicianship too, with Julius Drake’s accompaniments matching Kennedy’s tenor in subtlety [...] read all

Christopher Maltman
and Julius Drake
Middle Temple Hall, London
By Andrew Clark
May 6 2008 20:29
The idea of the down-and-out Verlaine teaching in a provincial school in England or languishing in a French prison is not what we associate with his poetry or the Mélodies it inspired. His simple [...] read all

One was aware, after having listened to tenor Mark Padmore and pianist Julius Drake for the best part of 90 minutes (and held my breath for what felt like the same amount of time) that something rather special had just happened.

However, any immediate response feels wholly inadequate in compariso [...] read all

From The Times
April 1, 2008
Alice Coote and Julius Drake at the Wigmore Hall
Hilary Finch

The iconic figure of the lone Romantic wanderer traversing an icy landscape of the soul is invariably, whether in music or art, a male one. Few women choose to undertake the journey of Schubert's Winte [...] read all

Alice Coote, Julius Drake
Wigmore Hall, London

By Edward Seckerson
Wednesday, 2 April 2008

When a singer of Alice Coote's temperament and artistry embarks upon the disillusionment and heartbreak of Schubert's "winter journey", she defies and transcends gender. But can a woman access somethin [...] read all

By George Hall
Sunday, 6 April 2008

When the 30-year-old Franz Schubert wrote his song-cycle Winterreise in 1827 he was already seriously ill with the syphilis that killed him a year later. Given his extraordinary empathy with the texts he set, it's hardly surprising that this narrative of a rej [...] read all

From The Times
February 29, 2008
Leiferkus/Drake at Middle Temple Hall, London EC4

Neil Fisher

If I tell you that the first of this year's Temple Song recitals plunged us into a maelstrom of misery, please don't take it as a criticism. For if you thought Schubert and Schumann's terminal po [...] read all

Wigmore Hall, London

Andrew Clements
Monday March 31, 2008
The Guardian

Alice Coote is the latest female singer to boldly go where only a few women have gone before. Die Winterreise is considered a strictly male preserve - the protagonist of the 24 poems by Wilhelm Müller that Schubert set [...] read all

Coote holds listeners spellbound

By John von Rhein | Tribune critic
February 18, 2008

Although Schubert wrote his great song cycle "Die Winterreise" ("The Winter Journey") for a male voice, and although many of the Wilhelm Mueller poems are gender specific, quite a few female singers have [...] read all

Gerald Finley, baritone,
Julius Drake,piano

Gramophone Jan 2008
Recording of the Month
Barber Songs

A Wonderful reminder of Barber's skill as a songwriter, in ideal performances

The Beggar's song. Dover Beach,Op. 3. 10 Hermit Songs,Op. 29. In the dark pinewood. Mélodies passagères,Op. 27 [...] read all

None but Soulful Hearts for Schubert and Goethe

Published: January 21, 2008
Schubert’s attraction to Goethe approached obsession. He set “None but the Lonely Heart” six times and returned again and again to the poetry of “Wilhelm Meister’s App [...] read all

Ian Bostridge and friends, Barbican / St Luke's, London
By Annette Morreau

Published: 21 January 2008

It was just shy of midnight when we slunk out into the rain of Old Street, the second instalment of Homeward Bound, the Barbican festival devised by Ian Bostridge, having come to a deliciou [...] read all

Padmore/Drake Middle
at the Temple Hall, London
Erica Jeal
Article history
Julius Drake is one of the most sought-after pianists by UK singers, and the Temple Song series has his bulging contacts book to thank for a roster of programmes that would be highlights at the Wigmore Hall. On [...] read all

Tenor Turns His Focus to the Art of the Song

Published: December 4, 2007

Not that many years ago voice buffs in New York who admired the American tenor Matthew Polenzani had to content themselves with hearing him in winning performances of supporting roles at the Metropol [...] read all

From The Sunday Times
November 4, 2007
Barber: Songs
Gerald Finley/Julius Drake

In my book, Samuel Barber is one of the finest of all songwriters in the 20th century. Every poem he sets is carefully chosen, thought about, and – the true mark of greatness – enhanced. Every human emotion, wh [...] read all

Classic FM Magazine (Dec issue) - 5 stars

Having served the songs of Charles Ives with enormous distinction, the partnership of baritone Gerald Finley and pianist Julius Drake shift artistic gear to explore works by one of America's greatest tunesmiths. Samuel Barber's lyrical writing and subtl [...] read all

October 23, 2007
Gerald Finley, Julius Drake
Hilary Finch at Wigmore Hall

Gerald Finley will be Covent Garden’s new Eugene Onegin in the spring. When he strode on to the Wigmore Hall platform, for a rare London solo recital, he already looked the part. This, after all, was part of the Wigmore [...] read all

Magic touch of the sad, pale man

Ivan Hewett reviews Ian Bostridge and Julius Drake at Wigmore Hall

At one point, the pale, anguished-looking man on stage leaned on the piano, gazed soulfully over our heads and sang a tremulous line from a romantic song about the flowers in the garden, who wh [...] read all

Christopher Maltman
Julius Drake

**** Wigmore Hall, London

Tim Ashley
Tuesday June 19, 2007
The Guardian

At the end of his recital, Christopher Maltman apologised to the audience for only being able to offer one encore because, as he put it: "I've had a bit of a throat thing a [...] read all

Amanda Roocroft, Julius Drake, Middle Temple Hall, London
Financial Times 25 May 2007 Andrew Clark
If you are lucky, a song recitalist will take you to the edge of an inner world. A select few know how to draw you in further. And then there’s Amanda Roocroft. Her peachy soprano may be what we [...] read all

Padmore/Drake Middle
at The Temple Hall, London

Erica Jeal
Tuesday May 1, 2007
The Guardian

Julius Drake is one of the most sought-after pianists by UK singers, and the Temple Song series has his bulging contacts book to thank for a roster of programmes that would be highlights at the Wig [...] read all

………..Which brings me, belatedly, to Julius Drake and Mark Padmore's performance of Die schöne Müllerin in Middle Temple Hall, part of a recital series curated by Drake that continues this week with Christianne Stotijn. Schubert's first great song cycle is a tirelessly fascinating and disturbing work [...] read all

Le Beau Récital Parisien de Joyce DiDonato et Julius Drake

Même si elle a remporté de beaux succès sur les scènes de l'Opéra de Paris ou du Festival d'Aix-en-Provence, Joyce DiDonato n'a pas encore, en France, la réputation de certaines autres mezzo-sopranos. Pour ce récital de mélodies et cantat [...] read all

La maja de Kansas

Le echa valor a la vida la mezzosoprano estadounidense Joyce DiDonato. Porque hay que tener agallas, para presentarse en un ciclo de lied, frente a un público "especializado", sin una sola canción en alemán, y un punto de osadía para comparecer en Madrid con un recital basado en [...] read all


Baritone Gerald Finley
Pianist Julius Drake in recital

At Roy Thomson Hall

Friday evening

Surely the Canadian-born Gerald Finley is the best living baritone currently at the peak of his powers. Finley sang Friday night at Roy Thomson [...] read all

A Vocalist Who Relishes the Poetry

Published: March 26, 2007

Gerald Finley, who sang at Zankel Hall on Friday night, has a bass-baritone of easy luxury. Mr. Finley must work hard to manage the top of his voice, but manage it he does. Elsewhere in his range there is a welcom [...] read all

Thursday, March 1, 2007;

Joyce DiDonato, Julius Drake

The young mezzo Joyce DiDonato has been stirring things up on the operatic stage for the last few years, winning hearts and minds for her dramatic depth as much as for her remarkable, multifaceted voice. So it was a real [...] read all

Beau soir (Tarde hermosa), de Debussy, fue una de las 37 canciones con las que obsequiaron el barítono Simon Keenlyside y el pianista Julius Drake a los incondicionales del XIII Ciclo de Lied del teatro de la Zarzuela. Y, en efecto, fue una tarde hermosa de canto y generosidad. En total, 37 cancione [...] read all

The Sunday Times January 28, 2007

New Releases

Classical CD of the week
¡Pasion! (songs by Obradors, Granados, Turina, Falla and Montsalvatge)
Joyce DiDonato (mezzo), Julius Drake (piano)
Eloquentia EL0608

Here, I suspect, is the disc that admirers of the yo [...] read all

Simon Keenlyside, Julius Drake, Wigmore Hall, London

By Richard Fairman
January 28 2007 15:26

In the opera house Simon Keenlyside is known for his brilliant characterisations and physical energy. Memories of his bird-like Papageno taking a flying leapto join his brood of young human chicks or [...] read all

Ian Bostridge, Julius Drake
Middle Temple Hall, London

By Richard Fairman

Published: January 17 2007

The season of winter colds can be a perilous one for promoters of song recitals. On Tuesday Philip Langridge woke up to find himself without a voice and the Temple Song series was fortuna [...] read all

BBC Music Magazine 5 Stars *****
Urlicht: a collection of Lieder
Christianne Stotijn (mezzo-soprano), Julius Drake (piano)
Onyx ONYX 4014 66:05 mins

Hot on the heels of the young Dutch mezzo’s debut disc – warmly welcomed by Hilary Finch in the April issue – comes a Mahler recital of [...] read all

Mahler: Urlich
Christianne Stotijn (mezzo), Julius Drake (piano)
Onyx ONYX4014, £12.99

Christianne Stotijn here confirms the promise of her CD debut disc with an
even better recital of Mahler. Her warm, rounded mezzo is a lovely instrument,
marred just occasionally by an over-intrusive vibrat [...] read all

Wiener Zeitung

Dreigestirn des Gesangs
Dorothea Röschmann, Thomas Quasthoff, Ian Bostridge – ein Dreigestirn des Liedgesangs bestritt im Musikverein einen Schubert-Abend. Und was für einen. Im Zentrum standen Vertonungen von Goethe-Gedichten: Röschmann und Bostridge zelebrierten Collins Lob der [...] read all

SUNDAY TELEGRAPH, UK - Michael Kennedy 19.11.06

The young Dutch mezzo Christianne Stotijn proves herself an extraordinary Mahler singer with this disc of 15 Lieder. She imparts theatrical drama to the Wunderhorn songs, finding an impressive palette of tone-colour with which to illuminate the tex [...] read all

BBC CD REVIEW, UK - Hilary Finch 11.11.06

This splendid new Mahler release . [Stotijn's voice is].. sheer joy.. full of wide-eyed childlike sense of wonder.

INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY, UK - Anna Picard 30.10.2006
Christianne Stotijn's second recital disc for ONYX shows just what a difference a matter of months can make in a still developing mezzo-soprano voice. The first song in her all-Mahler programme, Fruhlingsmorgen, gives little indication of t [...] read all

She's Dutch, in her late twenties, and with a mezzo voice this expressive, flexible, and free of faults no wonder her star is rising. After her CD debut with Schubert, Wolf and Berg she plunges into the Wunderhorn Mahler of nature's wonders, da [...] read all

Nothing routine, though, about Mahler and Berlioz as experienced through the voice and fingers of Bostridge and Drake. For a start, two major songcycles were performed with their original piano accompaniment rather than in their orchestrated form. And neither of them is often sung by a tenor. The sh [...] read all

Journey Throgh Venice
Joyce Didonato
Julius Drake
Wigmore Hall Live
...all the songs explain why Didonato has risen so quickly to international stardom. The purity and lightness of her tone are enchanting. Julius Drake's pianism is to match.

El recital soñado
EL PAÍS - Cultura - 14-06-2006

Schubertiade 2006
Ian Bostridge, tenor, y Julius Drake, piano. Schumann:

Dichterliebe und Lieder nach Gedichten von Justinus Kerner. Obras de Schubert y Schumann por diferentes intérpretes. Sala Angelika Kauffmann [...] read all

A soprano and pianist as equal partners in an evening of art songs. Mr Drake did his part full justice.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Vocal Arts Society

Does Ian Bostridge ever smile during his recitals? He could be singing about spring bursting into bloom, or about the giddy thrill of newfound love, but the grim mask never changes. That's not to say he's emotionally uninvolved with the songs he [...] read all

Music Review | Alice Coote
With Mahler and Schubert Through a Galaxy of Moods

The British mezzo-soprano Alice Coote made herself known to New York fanciers of song on Sunday afternoon. With her pianist, Julius Drake, she sang Mahler and Schubert at Alice Tully Hall and introd [...] read all

The Times March 28, 2006

Alice Coote Julius Drake
Hilary Finch at Wigmore Hall

Would she, or wouldn’t she? After a perfectly devised recital, an encore can seem inept, almost absurd. But Alice Coote was called back to the platform so many times that she and her accompanist Julius Drake [...] read all

The Observer
Sunday February 19, 2006

Joan Rogers, Julius Drake, Middle Temple, London

London's 16th-century Middle Temple Hall is an awesome place to attend a recital; amid the panelled and stained-glass splendour in which lawyers have preened themselves for 500 years, you cannot forget th [...] read all

Thomas Allen/Julius Drake

Temple Hall, London

George Hall
Thursday January 12, 2006
The Guardian

Devised and accompanied by pianist Julius Drake, the 2005-6 song series in the resplendent setting of Middle Temple Hall focuses on Schumann, and to Sir Thomas Allen fell the prize trophy o [...] read all

The Evening Standard, December 23 2005
Wigmore Hall, Gala for Jean

The name of the late Jean Meikle may not be familiar to many outside the music business, but the protégés of this inspirational agent included such celebrities as Ian Bostridge, Gerald Finley and many others. Her son, the piani [...] read all

Gerald Finley/Julius Drake

Wigmore Hall, London

Tim Ashley
Saturday December 3, 2005

Classical The programme for Gerald Finley's recital with pianist Julius Drake consisted of Schumann's Dichterliebe, Samuel Barber's Hermit Songs and a group of songs by Charles Ives. An unusual combina [...] read all

Schubert Recital with Ian Bostridge -

'Drake's graceful pianism,..propelled and colored each song. In "Totengrabers Heimweh" ("Gravedigger's Homesickness"), Drake brilliantly gave the piano harmonies an ethereal quality that paid homage to the late piano sonatas of Schubert's hero Beethoven.'

Szymanowski Quartet/Drake in Tabernacl, Machynlleth
Rian Evans | Wednesday September 1, 2004

Few converted chapels can have been put to better use than the Tabernacl in Machynlleth. Its interior resembles a smaller-scale St George's in Bristol, and, while its adjoining art gallery attracts most [...] read all

Alice Coote / Julius Drake

Wigmore Hall, London

Andrew Clements
Friday January 16, 2004
The Guardian

Alice Coote's debut recording for EMI was one of the outstanding vocal releases of last year. Much of the mezzo-soprano's Wigmore Hall recital with pianist Julius Drake - Schumann's Fra [...] read all

The Daniel – Drake partnership is one of the most satisfying in British chamber music: vital, thoughtful and confirmed in musical integrity of the highest order…..
Michael John White, The Independent on Sunday

Recital with Matthias Goerne
"Drake’s work was a thrilling demonstration of pianistic skill, attentive listening, and imaginative sympathy. His playing simultaneously responded to Schubert’s notes, rhythms and harmonies; to every word of Wilhelm Mueller’s tests, and to every nuance of Matthias Goer [...] read all