Aureole etc.




Nimbus on-line




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

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett


Some items
to consider

 


Enjoy the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra wherever you are. App available for iOS and Android


Tudor 7188


Vaughan Williams Symphony 3 etc.


Lyrita New Recording


Lyrita Premiere Recordings

Lyrita 4CDs £16 incl.postage

Lyrita 4CDs £16 incl.postage


Decca Phase 4 - 40CDs


Judith Bailey, George Lloyd


BAX Orchestral pieces


CASKEN Violin Concerto

Schumann Symphonies Rattle


Complete Brahms
Bargain price

 

 

 

 

REVIEW



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
 

alternatively
CD: MDT AmazonUK AmazonUS

British Music for Piano Duo
Edward ELGAR (1857-1934) Serenade for Strings in E minor, Op.20 – the composer’s own version for piano duet (1893) [10:02]
Frank BURY (1910-1944) Prelude and Fugue in E flat major for two pianos (c.1935/f.p. 1987) [5:17]
Edgar BAINTON (1880-1956) Miniature Suite for piano duet (1922) [4:24]
Gustav HOLST (1874-1934) Elegy (In Memoriam William Morris) from Symphony in F (The Cotswolds – the composer’s own version for two pianos (1899-1900)) [8:30]
Gustav HOLST The Planets – composer’s original version for two piano (1913- ) [44:59]
Anthony Goldstone (piano) and Caroline Clemmow (piano)
rec. 1996, St John the Baptist Church, Alkborough, Lincolnshire.
DIVINE ART DDV24154 [74:29]

Experience Classicsonline


 
The main event here is Holst’s own two-piano version of The Planets. This work has impressed and moved me since first hearing the Scottish National Orchestra playing it more than forty years ago. When I approached the two-piano version I was a little wary, and a touch cynical. I need not have worried. It is a valid account of this work that inspires, excites and often astounds. The highlight of Goldstone and Clemmow’s playing has to be the marvellous interpretation of Jupiter – with its loping march tune. However, the intricacies of Mercury, the rhythmic drive of Mars, the romance of Venus and the more rarefied atmosphere of the distant spheres are all impressive.
 
Edward Elgar’s Serenade for Strings has always been one of my favourites in the string orchestra medium. However, I am not sure that I need a recording of a piano duet version. On the other hand, it is interesting to hear. There is a clarity about this duet that allows the harmonic and melodic progress to be heard in detail. I guess that it is good to have in my collection; nonetheless, I will not turn to this version in preference to Boult or Barbirolli and the band.
 
I have not come across the music of Frank Bury before. He was killed during the Normandy landings in 1944. This beautiful short Prelude and Fugue demonstrates his compositional skills. The opening Prelude is a master class in the genre of English ‘pastoral’ whilst the more ambitious fugue nods to Handel in the ‘theme’. However, the exposition of the fugue is anything but baroque. Although this big, powerful work is largely ‘conservative’ in its musical language, it manages to push the boundaries towards an intensity that is almost Prokofiev. I understand this is the only composition of Bury’s currently available on CD. Based on this Prelude and Fugue we have to hope there will be a deeper exploration of this unknown composer. Unfortunately, this present work would appear to be the only one in print at this time: I hope someone will tell me that I am wrong on this score.
 
Edgar L. Bainton is a composer with whom I can do business. Whether it is one of his three symphonies or the great anthem ‘And I saw a new Heaven’, he always exhibits a craftsman-like approach to his music: it typically inspires, interests and moves the listener. As an admirer of Richard Wagner, his musical style is neo-romantic; this does not imply that he wrote parodies or pastiches of an earlier generation. The Miniature Suite for piano duet is a perfect small-scale outing displaying a typically ‘English’ mood – with nods to Debussy and Vaughan Williams. There is nothing here of a Wagnerian disposition. My only criticism is that it is excessively short.
 
Holst’s ‘Elegy’ (In Memoriam William Morris) is a dark, austere work that is funereal in its progress. It is written as a processional march – with a huge climax in the middle section. If I am honest I prefer the orchestral version, however, the present two-piano version preserves the dignity of the original. It is difficult to understand from the liner-notes whether this piece is performed in the Colin Matthews’ ‘modern performing edition’ or as the track-listings suggest that it is played directly from Holst’s own ‘version for two pianos’.
 
In spite of my reservations about the Elgar ‘Serenade’, this is an important release from Divine Art. The recording is excellent. The playing of all the works is superb. The interaction between Goldstone and Clemmow is tight and always musically convincing. I do not wish to compare this present version of The Planets with that of Fiona and John York on Nimbus NI5871. However, I did suggest in my review of that CD that it was ‘an achievement that will long stand the test of time and will hardly be bettered’. Whether the present recording is ‘better’ is largely irrelevant. Certainly, as far as The Planets is concerned, it is a little shorter. However, I thoroughly enjoyed both two-piano versions of this great work. Moreover, the Frank Bury and Edgar Bainton are attractive bonuses.
 

John France

Comment received

Can I point out that the version played here, and the one performed by the Yorks on the Nimbus disc, are DIFFERENT WORKS……. The Yorks do not play on two pianos but as a piano duet (on one instrument) using the version revised from the orchestral piece by Nora Day and Vally Lasker, under Holst’s supervision .

The version on our disc is Holst’s original two –piano version which PRECEDED the orchestral one…. so has many differences, and so a direct comparison is rather more problematical. .

Divine Art


 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



 


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






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.