Aureole etc.




Golden Age singers

Nimbus on-line




If it’s the Czech works you’re after, do not hesitate

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett


CD REVIEW

Some items
to consider

 


New App by the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra for iOS and Android!


CASKEN Violin Concerto

Schumann Symphonies Rattle


Complete Brahms
Bargain price

 

alternatively
CD: AmazonUK AmazonUS
Download: Classicsonline


James MacMILLAN (b. 1959)
Fourteen Little Pictures (1997) [23:18]
Franz Peter SCHUBERT (1797-1828)
Piano Trio in E flat, D929 (1827) [50:21]
Gould Piano Trio (Benjamin Frith (piano); Lucy Gould (violin); Alice Neary (cello))
rec. live, Wigmore Hall, London, 17 July 2008. DDD
WIGMORE HALL LIVE WHLIVE0026 [73:42]
Experience Classicsonline

Last year saw the premiere of MacMillan’s St John Passion at the Barbican, an awe-inspiring event that found the composer working on a large canvas. Here is the other side of the MacMillan coin – an intimate chamber work. Fourteen Little Miniatures is a set of inter-related short pieces commissioned to mark the 25th anniversary of the collaboration of Peter Frankl, György Pauk and Ralph Kirshbaum.
 
MacMillan’s piece encompasses a wide variety of textures and makes play with the relative importance of each instrument. In some the cello will dominate, in others the violin, in others the honours may be more equally distributed.  There is another recording - on an all-MacMillan disc issued on Black Box - but that might prove rather difficult to locate. The sheer presence of the recording at the Wigmore Hall is laudable, giving grit to the more outgoing, modernist passages. The eighth variation, for strings alone, presents some of those characteristic MacMillan ‘keening’ gestures that here add almost a sense of pleading to the music. They feature prominently in the penultimate variation, also. The very next variation, the ninth, presents a virtuoso side of the piano part - excellently judged by Benjamin Frith. There is an extended silence after the final notes have been sounded – as befits a performance such as this. The title may be misleading, for these 14 ‘little’ pictures contain a wealth of depth and add up to significantly more than the sum of their parts.
 
The Schubert - D929, sometimes known as Op. 100 - emerges as bright as a button, heard immediately after the MacMillan. The performance is fluent, the tempo for the initial Allegro being perfectly chosen. There is also a youthful freshness here. Perhaps the freshness I not ideally coupled with depth of interpretation, as on occasion in the first movement the momentum stumbles. Schubert is thinking on a large canvas here (the piece lasts over 50 minutes, after all) and the maturity to project the longer-range processes should be a given here. The Beaux Arts Trio demonstrates this perfectly on the Philips twofer, 438 700-2. Despite this, there are many, many moments of the utmost beauty and the three players respond superbly to each other.
 
There is speculation that the Andante con moto’s theme is based on a Swedish folk melody. It would presumably have come to Schubert via the tenor Isaac Berg, a Dane who was visiting Vienna at the time of the work’s composition. This movement includes a passage - just after the six-minute mark - of the most convivial conversation between violin and cello. The Scherzo is deliciously pointed, while the long finale (16:56) obviously brings out the best in the players. Here joy seems all and it is only when we look further beneath the surface that we begin to realise the miracle of Schubert’s invention.
 
A worthwhile release, and a stimulating coupling.
 
Colin Clarke
 

 


Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on
Musicweb


Donate and get a free CD

New Releases

Naxos Classical

Hyperion

Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
Alto
Arcodiva
Atoll
CDAccord
Cameo Classics
Centaur
Hallé
Hortus
Lyrita
Nimbus
Northern Flowers
Redcliffe
Sheva
Talent
Toccata Classics


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing
sample
 


EXPLORE MUSICWEB INTERNATIONAL

Making a Donation to MusicWeb

Writing CD reviews for MWI

About MWI
Who we are, where we have come from and how we do it.

Site Map

How to find a review

How to find articles on MusicWeb
Listed in date order

Review Indexes
   By Label
      Select a label and all reviews are listed in Catalogue order
   By Masterwork
            Links from composer names (eg Sibelius) are to resource pages with links to the review indexes for the individual works as well as other resources.

Themed Review pages

Jazz reviews

 

Discographies
   Composer
      Composer surveys
   National
      Unique to MusicWeb -
a comprehensive listing of all LP and CD recordings of given works
.
Prepared by Michael Herman

The Collector’s Guide to Gramophone Company Record Labels 1898 - 1925
Howard Friedman

Book Reviews

Complete Books
We have a number of out of print complete books on-line

Interviews
With Composers, Conductors, Singers, Instumentalists and others
Includes those on the Seen and Heard site

Nostalgia

Nostalgia CD reviews

Records Of The Year
Each reviewer is given the opportunity to select the best of the releases

Monthly Best Buys
Recordings of the Month and Bargains of the Month

Comment
Arthur Butterworth Writes

An occasional column

Phil Scowcroft's Garlands
British Light Music articles

Classical blogs
A listing of Classical Music Blogs external to MusicWeb International

Reviewers Logs
What they have been listening to for pleasure

Announcements

 

Community
Bulletin Board

Give your opinions or seek answers

Reviewers
Pat and present

Helpers invited!

Resources
How Did I Miss That?

Currently suspended but there are a lot there with sound clips


Composer Resources

British Composers

British Light Music Composers

Other composers

Film Music (Archive)
Film Music on the Web (Closed in December 2006)

Programme Notes
For concert organizers

External sites
British Music Society
The BBC Proms
Orchestra Sites
Recording Companies & Retailers
Online Music
Agents & Marketing
Publishers
Other links
Newsgroups
Web News sites etc

PotPourri
A pot-pourri of articles

MW Listening Room
MW Office

Advice to Windows Vista users  
Questionnaire    
Site History  
What they say about us
What we say about us!
Where to get help on the Internet
CD orders By Special Request
Graphics archive
Currency Converter
Dictionary
Magazines
Newsfeed  
Web Ring
Translation Service

Rules for potential reviewers :-)
Do Not Go Here!
April Fools




Return to Review Index

Untitled Document


Reviews from previous months
Join the mailing list and receive a hyperlinked weekly update on the discs reviewed. details
We welcome feedback on our reviews. Please use the Bulletin Board
Please paste in the first line of your comments the URL of the review to which you refer.