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CITY NEWS May 2022 "The story of Beatrix Potter in music"

...Dressed in period costume, Lankshear presented the songs with a few well-chosen props to set the scene... she stayed in character, creating an impressive period atmosphere for the whole concert... the highlight of the program [was] Warble for Lilac Time from the poem by Walt Whitman with music by Elliott Carter. This dramatic work was superbly sung, clearly showing Lankshear’s technical skills. Francis Greep’s piano playing of this complex work was excellent... (Len Power)

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CLASSIKON May 2022 "Chloe Lankshear’s delightful presentation of the life of Beatrix Potter"

"The Song Company is renowned for its intriguing, unusual programs and Becoming Beatrix is no exception. Part of their Close-up series concentrating on individual artists, Becoming Beatrix featured accomplished soprano, Chloe Lankshear, who literally 'became' Beatrix in this program, and the innovative Francis Greep... Chloe sang Skylark in a strong, clear voice – the voice of youth and positive feelings, followed by Linnet... from The Birds, a song cycle by Sally Whitwell... There was a touching rapport between Chloe and Francis, who accompanied her on the piano with great sensitivity.

The different stages of Beatrix Potter’s life... are illustrated with appropriate songs from an eclectic range of composers and styles. As Beatrix grew up, her love of nature... reflected in the songs Les Papillons (Butterflies) by Claude Debussy, Le Rossignol des lilas (The Nightingale in the Lilac) by Reynaldo Hahn and the lively Er ist’s (It’s Here!) by Hugo Wolf. Chloe Lankshear sang each song sensitively according to its context, and gradually changed her appearance from the little girl with hair held back with an 'Alice band' to the young lady with her hair tied up with a clasp... Chloe sang about sunless, weeping rivers and a sadly singing nightingale, while Francis Greep interpreted this anguish passionately on the piano. More anguish was displayed in the next two songs by George Crumb: Wind Elegy and Let it be Forgotten...

Her love and acceptance of nature was summed up in the final song by Aaron Copland: Nature, the Gentlest Mother set to a poem by Emily Dickinson. This touching song was a fitting conclusion to a wonderful concert. The audience cheered and clapped and many thronged around the performers, expressing their appreciation. I certainly appreciated this thoughtfully curated concert and learned a great deal about Beatrix Potter. Now, whenever I hear her name, I will see the face and hear the voice of Chloe Lankshear. (Heidi Hereth)

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