£10.95 from your local retailer or directly
Dunelm Records, 2 Park Close, Glossop,
Derbyshire SK13 7RQ
Telephone & Fax: 01457 855313
Web site: www.dunelm-records.co.uk
It is good to
have another CD from Dunelm Records
which features Diane Porteous’s splendid
cello playing. The first CD (DRD0196)
comprised music of Robert Schumann,
Matthew Taylor and Jean Sibelius. The
new one consists entirely of première
recordings, thus continuing Dunelm’s
interesting – and enterprising – projects.
In addition, it marks the début
of Kathryn Page on the Dunelm label;
her superb piano technique and musicality
are greatly to be welcomed. This CD
has given me my first opportunity to
hear Kathryn play as well as that of
hearing the three works it contains.
Cello Suite of 1957-8 was composed
while he was still a student at Oxford
University. It is dedicated to Rohan
de Saram. Though a youthful work, it
is most effective in its cello writing
as well as in its construction, with
much variety between the three well-contrasted
movements. This performance brings out
all of these features, sometimes moving,
at other times humorous (especially
in the pizzicato parts!), producing
an enjoyable experience.
Only one of these three
works is for cello and piano and that
is John R. Williamson’s 2nd
Cello Sonata of 2001. Here, each of
the performers is of equal importance;
the piano playing a significant role
throughout. It particularly comes to
the fore in the rather grand final section
of the Finale where it is given the
theme with imitations heard on the cello.
The ensemble playing and balance is
excellent, each player being fully aware
of the other’s part, making for a most
enjoyable and brilliant performance.
The four movements are well contrasted
with the composer’s characteristic harmonic
style being clearly recognisable to
those who have Dunelm’s CDs of some
of his most rewarding piano music and
songs. Particularly effective is the
set of Variations that form the second
movement. Throughout the work, the lyrical
cello lines come over well, and there
is also some humour at times!
It is sad that Vagn
Holmboe’s magnificent Sonata for
solo cello of 1969 (four movements)
isn’t much better known. Diane Porteous
must have made a thorough study of this
technically difficult work in order
to produce such an outstanding and satisfying
performance with some lovely, ethereal
harmonies in the third movement, and
much humour in the finale.
The order of the three
works on this CD works really well,
and the CD booklet is excellent, with
splendid photographs and well-written
information on the music, the players
and the composers. Details of related
CDs are also given; only the fact that
the works played here are première
recordings seems to be missing from
The recording quality
shows how excellent a job Jim Pattison
always carries out.
Very highly recommended.
* Ian Milnes (b.1943)
grew up in a musical family in Leeds.
At the age of eleven he took up the
violin and, when thirteen, the viola,
and began to compose. He has been composing
for 48 years during which time – being
ever conscious of the needs of young
musicians – he has written a variety
of music for them to enjoy playing.
By 2002, he had written over 120 works.
Although a qualified textiles technician,
Ian decided to change course and became
Tutor-Librarian at Leeds Music Centre
(now the City of Leeds College of Music)
in January 1969.
In 1973, ill health forced him to resign
his post there, and he became manager
of the book and score departments of
Banks' music shop in York. He taught
some music and continued composing during
this period. Recently, he has been teaching
composition and doing creative work
with folk musicians, whilst developing
his reviewing and critical facilities.
He is the author of the booklet notes
to Dunelm’s series of recordings of
the complete set of Beethoven’s 32 Piano
Sonatas played by Murray McLachlan.
Dunelm Records has compiled two CDs
of his music, DRD0058 (mainly of historical
interest) and DRD0059 of modern recordings
of 15 of his works.