In January 2017 Rufus Wainwright toured with the prestigious all string ensemble Amsterdam Sinfonietta through the Netherlands. Critics and audiences of the ten concerts were enraptured by the intimacy and intensity of the program curated by Wainwright. The concerts reflected the immense bandwidth of Wainwright's musical influences and interests from Verdi Arias to Leonard Cohen and Joni Mitchell, from Rameau pieces to the American songbook and French chanson and from Wainwright's beloved Berlioz to his family's and his own songs, some of them written for this program.
The emotional centerpiece of the album is Wainwright's almost 9 minute version of late Canadian singer songwriter Lhasa de Sela's harrowing "I'm Going In", a song she wrote about her own death from cancer at the age of 37.
All arrangements were created specifically for the Amsterdam Sinfonietta and around Wainwright's voice that is truly at the peak of its power. The artistic kinship between Wainwright and the Amsterdam Sinfonietta lead by Candida Thompson is astounding and make these live recordings into something utterly unique and breathtaking.
The album was mixed by multiple Grammy winner Ryan Freeland and mastered by Ruairi O'Flaherty, both in Los Angeles, and is comprised of live recordings from five of the ten concerts.
"These were some of the most challenging and most fulfilling shows I have done in my life," said Wainwright. "Never have I sung so many songs from such different styles and worlds of music from French baroque to classical arias to contemporary music. I don't think this would have been possible without the Amsterdam Sinfonietta and Candida Thompson. I was caught, uplifted, secure, challenged in their beautiful string playing."
- Vinyl LP
- Live recordings from 5 concerts
- How Deep Is The Ocean
- Excursion à Venise
- Tristes Apprêts
- Go Leave
- Gay Messiah
- Who By Fire
- I'm Going In
- L'île Inconnue