“Balzac’s “Passion In The Desert” Read By Ken Nordine” by Ken Nordine - album review

features in: Album Chart of 1955Album Chart of the Decade: 1950s

TJR says

Ken Nordine reads, in the first-person, an almost faithful interpretation of Honoré de Balzac’s short-story, “Une passion dans le désert”, originally written away back in 1830. The story is set in Egypt during Napoleon's campaign (1798-1801). Ken’s expressive spoken word is accompanied by pianist Dick Marks and bassist Johnny Frigo. As an album, it’s good for at least two or three listens – preferably with no distractions. Synopsis: At the beginning of the story, the French soldier has already been captured by the Maugrabins, but he manages to escape from them, only to become lost in the Egyptian desert. After riding his horse to death, he sets off on foot in the immense sands until he finds a small oasis with date palms (an unsurprisingly standard representation of the desert in Egypt), and settles in to wait for passing French troops. However the soldier soon discovers that he must share his oasis with a female panther. He manages to tame the panther by petting her, and they live quite well together until they have a misunderstanding… Fear, hope and cynicism collide in this weird and disorientating tale, brilliantly delivered in Ken’s inimitable style. Throughout, there are between-the-lines smiles as well as up-front despair, but the uneasy tension is never broken until the dramatic, murderous finale…

The Jukebox Rebel

A [14:02] 6.8.png Ken Nordine - Passion In The Desert, part 1 (Honore de Balzac) Storytelling
B [15:40] 7.1.png Ken Nordine - Passion In The Desert, part 2 (Honore de Balzac) Storytelling

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