The Bowman bows out

The Bowman bows out


norman lebrecht

May 08, 2011

The outstanding countertenor James Bowman will give his final Wigmore Hall recital on May 21. I have been listening to him there for half my life and I can’t believe I’ll never hear him there again, but James is pushing and that’s a wise time to go. Oh, my veni, veni, venis long ago…

With typical generosity, he is sharing his farewell with the fast-rising Iranian-American harpsichordist, Mahan Esfahani.

Purcell, Handel and Bach…mmm. Book here.


  • Maxine Handy says:

    I am in entire agreement with you comments. For a decade I attended his every performance, and commissioned a Scena to celebrate his 50th birthday. I have all his recordings and have been listening to his unique voice for over three decades. This year I have at last completed two books on the great James Bowman; they have taken me more than ten years to write…but were a labour of love…an offering to this divine artist. Yes, it is sad that he is leaving the London music scene, but James has enjoyed many different stages in his legendary career, and I think that this is just such another. He is not disappearing into memory alone; he will still be singing in other, often charming, venues. As I have said in my “Triple-Portrait of a Countertenor”, as James slowly fades with time, like an Old-Master, he becomes an ever more beautiful Masterpiece.