Welcome to the Betty Roe Society web site; dedicated to the works of English composer, Betty Roe MBE.
All in the Golden Afternoon : Songs by Betty Roe
Betty Roe MBE is one of Britain's finest composers of English Song. She has composed over 200 songs but the majority, particularly those composed since 1990, remain unrecorded. The Betty Roe Society wishes to address this by making a professional, world premiere recording of 12 significant works.
You can help this project by making a donation to the Betty Roe Society to cover the cost of the recording. In exchange, you will receive;
donations over £20: A CD copy of the recording
donations over £80: The CD plus an exclusive printed volume containing the sheet music of all 12 works
donations over £200: The CD and sheet music plus an invitation to the launch party with the opportunity to meet the artists and hear some of the music performed live
For more information please see our Kickstarter page;
Words by Swinburne set for high voice and piano. This delightful song was written in 1999 for the birth of the composer's great grandson.
Words by Lewis Foreman, set for high voice and piano. A man in autumn casts his mind back to Spring.
The Fair Singer
Words by Andrew Marvell set for tenor and piano. An ardent love song.
Magnificat (for Grace)
Words from the Book of Common Prayer set for mezzo-soprano and piano. Roe takes a dramatic approach to the text giving us Mary's response to the annunciation.
Three Hardy Conversations
Words by Thomas Hardy set as duets for mezzo-soprano, baritone and piano. We meet three sets of characters; a wife with a drunken husband, a farmer planning his funeral and an old maid. Roe's music highlights both the humour and pathos of the texts.
Words by Marian Lines set for baritone and piano. The music ranges from an expansive landscape for the dream house, though the practical musings on gardening and the weather to a jolly number about the benefits of owning a scooter.
Two Garden Songs
Words by Matthew Arnold and anonymous set for soprano, violin and piano. Roe's music evokes the rustling trees of Kensington Gardens. In The Critic the music underlines the comeuppance of an opinionated seedling.
Words by Ursula Vaughan Williams set for tenor, horn and piano. This will form the most substantial work on the disc. Roe's music creates an integrated sound world for the "seven ages" text with the horn adding stirring and melancholy notes.
The Life that I Have
Words from the film Carve her Name with Pride set for medium voice, flute and piano.
Three Celtic Songs
Settings of words by Irish poets for medium voice, recorder and piano. The music creates a gentle lullaby, a boisterous teenager and a Fiddler of Dooney whose tune is heard fading into the distance.