In 'Hiawatha,' Longfellow created a character of enormous complexity, a person with supernatural and superhuman gifts sent to Earth to redeem the Indian nations. He was a man of peace, but also a great warrior
Stamford, CT (PRWEB) April 3, 2007
In honor of the 200th anniversary of the birth of American poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, 217 Records announces a new project, begun this month: a complete CD recording of Longfellow's epic poem "The Song of Hiawatha."
Michael Maglaras, founder of 217 Records, is currently recording this, America's only national epic poem, for projected release in September, 2007.
"We intend to record the entire poem throughout the spring of this year, with editing to be completed by this summer," reports Terri Templeton, 217 Records producer.
Using Native American music throughout what is expected to be a six-CD recording; "The Song of Hiawatha" will be released in a special Longfellow bicentennial boxed set.
"Hiawatha" is a narrative poem rich with imagery and profound beauty. Weaving together old Native American legends from many North American tribal nations, Longfellow began "Hiawatha" in June of 1854, and writing at a feverish pace, completed it by March, 1855. Published in that year, it immediately became a national best seller, selling 10,000 copies within a few months.
"In 'Hiawatha,' Longfellow created a character of enormous complexity, a person with supernatural and superhuman gifts sent to Earth to redeem the Indian nations. He was a man of peace, but also a great warrior," said Maglaras.
"'Hiawatha' is part Indian legend, part Longfellow's fancy, and is every bit as exciting as the 'Lord of the Rings'," continued Templeton. "There are monsters, magicians, wonderful creatures, and, of course, a hero endowed with great strength and profound wisdom."
Michael Maglaras will also publicly perform "The Song of Hiawatha" in its entirety in Portland, Maine in the winter of 2007 in commemoration of the 152nd anniversary of the first publication of "The Song of Hiawatha," Longfellow's most famous work.
To listen to an excerpt from "Hiawatha" go to:
217 Records is a label devoted to celebrating the American artistic experience.
In 2006 and 2007, 217 Records released the two-volume "Whittier Bicentennial Recording Project," celebrating the 200th anniversary of the birth of John Greenleaf Whittier.
Volume 1 of the Whittier Bicentennial Recording Project, "Snow-Bound," (released in 2006) is dedicated entirely to Whittier's lyric masterpiece of the same title. This CD is the first contemporary recording of this epic poem. Listen to an excerpt from "Snow-Bound:" http://cdbaby.com/cd/maglaras
Volume 2, "Barbara Frietchie & Other Poems," (released in January 2007) includes 12 of Whittier's most beloved poems, including "The Pressed Gentian," "Burning Driftwood," and "The Barefoot Boy." All poems are read by Maglaras. Listen to an excerpt from "Barbara Frietchie:"