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Paul Corfield Godfrey

Composer

MUSICAL CHAPTERS FROM THE LORD OF THE RINGS

COMPLETE DEMO RECORDING

For many years the Tolkien Estate has refused to allow any musical treatment of the works of the author which employed his own words. Now they have agreed to make a concession in respect of the music of Paul Corfield Godfrey, whose cycle of “epic scenes from The Silmarillion” was finally completed in 2023 with the issue of a ten-CD series of recordings from Volante Opera and Prima Facie Records.

Ever since the 1960s the composer has been working on sketches, fragments and episodes of what was envisaged as a cycle of musical works based upon The Lord of the Rings. Following on from the success of the recordings of The Silmarillion Paul was persuaded to go back to these beginnings and fully explore, expand and complete the work which has now evolved as “musical chapters from The Lord of the Rings”. This fully operatic setting has now become a companion work on the same scale as The Silmarillion. This adaptation takes place over thirty “chapters” designed to be performed over six evenings – over fifteen hours of music.

 

This work is currently in the process of recording by Volante Opera and it is anticipated that Prima Facie will release a demo recording of the complete cycle, in the same manner as their Silmarillion recordings, in 2025.

 

The professional singers, some thirty in number, come mainly from Welsh National Opera. Returning artists from The Silmarillion include: Simon Crosby Buttle as Frodo, Julian Boyce as Sam, Philip Lloyd-Evans as Gandalf, Stephen Wells as Aragorn, Michael Clifton-Thompson as Gollum, Helen Jarmany as Éowyn, Huw Llywelyn as Bilbo, Emma Mary Llewellyn as Arwen, Laurence Cole as Boromir/Denethor, Martin Lloyd as Treebeard/Herb Master, Helen Greenaway as Lobelia/Ioreth, Rosie Hay as Gwaihir, Sophie Yelland as the Barrow-Wight, Louise Ratcliffe as Lindir with George Newton-Fitzgerald and Jasey Hall taking on a plethora of roles.  Angharad Morgan will also be reprising her role as Galadriel from The Silmarillion. Our new cast members and their characters will be introduced as the recording process continues.

 

Those who have enjoyed the composer’s large-scale setting of The Silmarillion will be pleased to discover that the music inhabits the same musical world as before, with many ideas and themes continued and expanded into The Lord of the Rings. The “musical chapters” also incorporate other works by the composer such as his earlier Tolkien songs (already available on CD) which now assume greater significance in the course of the whole structure.

Although the text is inevitably abridged, it adheres without any but the most minor alterations to the author’s original words, and the original plot development remains unchanged – including such elements as Tom Bombadil, the Barrow-wight and the ‘scouring of the Shire’. And some other passages, such as the coronation and wedding of Aragorn, are given expanded musical treatment.

 

Also coming early 2025, a complete recording of Paul Corfield Godfrey’s solo piano works played by renowned British concert pianist Duncan Honeybourne. This will include, amongst other works, the epic piano rondo Akallabêth, a solo piano version of the Wedding March from The Fall of Gondolin and a new work composed specifically for Duncan and this album – The Passing of Arwen.

 

For more information about the recording by Volante Opera Productions please visit: www.volanteopera.wales

 

Updates about the recording process will be posted to our social media feeds:

DISCORD: https://discord.gg/J6bQFHygr7

FACEBOOK: Volante Opera Productions, The Music of Paul Corfield Godfrey

INSTAGRAM/THREADS: @volanteopera

TWITTER/X: @OperaVolante, @TheCorfield

EPIC SCENES FROM THE SILMARILLION

COMPLETE DEMO RECORDINGS

Volante Opera Productions recently released a collected edition of Paul's "Epic Scenes from The Silmarillion after the mythology of J. R. R. Tolkien".  This contains all five parts of the cycle and a 128 page booklet containing the complete texts and a guide to the work.  

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BLITHE SPIRIT

Volante Opera Productions has released a complete commercial demo recording of Paul's adaptation of Noël Coward's improbable farce "Blithe Spirit". 

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16/06/2024 - SHOP - The scores for Mysteries of Time (Op. 44), The Deserted Village (Op. 23), Sundials (Op. 57), Two Pagan Choruses (Op. 30) and Hymnus Mysticus (Op. 37) have now been published by Zarathustra and are available to purchase from Volante's Website.

 

14/05/2024 - SHOP - The score Three Romances for Violin and Harp (Op. 40) has now been published by Zarathustra and is available to purchase from Volante's Website

 

07/05/2024 - THE LORD OF THE RINGS - After discussion with members of our Discord group Paul was inspired to create an additional appendix for The Lord of the Rings out of a song that had been previously cut for pacing - The Lay of Durin.  This has been completed, orchestrated, will be recorded and added to the release next year.

08/04/2024 - TOLKIEN CYCLE - we are extremely excited to announce that the rights to Paul's adaptations of Musical Chapters from The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit have been cleared and Volante Opera Productions are working away at Complete Demo Recordings of both works.

 

15/02/2024 - PURCHASE - Volante Opera Productions now has an online shop (www.volanteopera.wales) where all of the available CDs and scores can be purchased with ease, we have therefore removed the PURCHASE page from this site. 

 

09/10/2023 - RECORDINGS - Volante Opera Productions' Demo Recording of Blithe Spirit has been sent off for manufacture and will be released on 24/11/2023

 

08/10/2023 - RECORDINGS - A new music video of Crade Song has been added to Op. 76.

01/07/2023 - PURCHASE - All scores and CDs of The War of Wrath and The Complete Silmarillion now available for purchase.

 

7/06/2023 - PURCHASE - We are now able to take pre-orders for the 23rd June releases (The War of Wrath & The Complete Silmarillion).

07/06/2023 - RECORDINGS/VOCAL WORKS - A video of Dithyramb from Op.30 Two Pagan Choruses has been added.

 

21/04/2023 - VOCAL WORKS - Two new compositions have been completed and entries added to the site.  Op. 76 has another song added, Lisa Lân, and Op. 78 has been added.  This is De Profundis, a chamber piece for four solo voices, string quartet and harp after the letter by Oscar Wilde.

 

08/04/2023 - VARIOUS - A new music video has been added (Passacaglia: "On the Seashore of Endless Worlds") along with trailers for The Silmarillion  and The Nightingale and the Rose. Paul's review pages have been opened up but content is still being added - this will be a long process, there's a lot of them to upload!

 

21/02/2023 - STAGE WORKS - Composition has been completed on Saint Joan and entries has been added to the relevant pages with information.

21/02/2023 - VOCAL WORKS - A new setting of Cradle Song has been completed and added to Op. 76.

03/01/2023 - PURCHASE - Vocal and Full Scores for The Nightingale and the Rose are now available.  Also the collected edition score of Akallabeth is now available.

 

03/01/2023 - VOCAL WORKS - Searching for Lambs, a newly completed arrangement by Paul has been added to Op. 76.

 

10/12/2022 - HOME - Blithe Spirit has been added to the Upcoming Recordings box.

 

05/12/2022 - PURCHASE - The Nightingale and the Rose, The Sphinx & Hymnus Mysticus CD is now available direct from us.  Online retailers and digitl download release will follow in the coming weeks.

 

24/11/2022 - DISCORD - a Discord has been created for the Music of Paul Corfield Godfrey.  Paul and some of the cast of the recordings are on there and it will be updated regularly with information about Paul's work and the recordings in progress: https://discord.gg/J6bQFHygr7

Join us on Discord: https://discord.gg/J6bQFHygr7

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