MusicWeb International One of the most grown-up review sites around

  2022
 57,903 reviews
   and more ... and still writing ...

Search MusicWeb Here
Acte Prealable Polish CDs

Presto Music CD retailer
 
Founder: Len Mullenger                                    Editor in Chief:John Quinn             

Some items
to consider

 

paid for
advertisements

Acte Prealable Polish recordings

Forgotten Recordings
Forgotten Recordings
All Forgotten Records Reviews


TROUBADISC
Troubadisc Weinberg- TROCD01450

100th birthday of Mieczyslaw Weinberg on December 8, 2019.
Renate Eggbrecht has recorded all 3 violin Sonatas
All Troubadisc reviews


FOGHORN Classics

Alexandra-Quartet
Brahms String Quartets

All Foghorn Reviews


All HDTT reviews


Clarissa Bevilacqua plays
Augusta Read Thomas

all Nimbus reviews

Brahms Dvorak
Brahms 2 Dvorak 7
all tudor reviews

 

 


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing
sample

Sample: See what you will get

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Founding Editor
   
Rob Barnett
Editor in Chief
John Quinn
Contributing Editor
Ralph Moore
Webmaster
   David Barker
Postmaster
Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger

 

Discs for review may be sent to:
Jonathan Woolf
76 Lushes Road
Loughton
Essex IG10 3QB
United Kingdom

jonathan_woolf@yahoo.co.uk


 

REVIEW Plain text for smartphones & printers

Support us financially by purchasing this from

Haydn WOOD (1882-1959)
Violin Concerto in A minor (1928) [26:56]
Samuel COLERIDGE-TAYLOR (1875-1912)
Violin Concerto in G minor (1912) [31:52]
Frederick DELIUS (1862-1934)
Suite for violin and orchestra (c.1888-1891) [18:35]
Tasmin Little (violin)
BBC Philharmonic Orchestra/Andrew Davis
rec. May 2015, MediaCity UK, Salford
CHANDOS CHAN10879 [77:50]

We’ve come a long way since the days of pre-war critics expressing surprise at the duplication of recordings of Haydn Quartets and Mozart Piano Sonatas. For here is the second recording of Haydn Wood’s 1928 Violin Concerto and another recording of Coleridge-Taylor’s Concerto of 1912, premiered by pioneering American violinist Maud Powell. The exponent is that fearless propagandist for British violin works, Tasmin Little, who has once again – as in her recent Moeran Concerto (Chandos CHAN 10796) – joined with the BBC Philharmonic and Andrew Davis.

All three composers on this disc – the third is Delius – shared one particular thing in common: they were all violinists. In fact Wood actually made a single 78rpm recording as a fiddle player. His Concerto is dedicated to his wife and is an effusive love letter, opening with exotic-filmic richness and proceeding with a rich variety of vivid counter-themes and primary soloistic passages. To these Little responds with surety of purpose, managing to bind the violin figuration with the romantic ardour of the writing in a thoroughly convincing way. Whilst Lorraine McAslan plays the slow movement rather faster (Dutton CDLX7245), there’s just a touch more of the elegiac about the opening theme in Little’s approach and she plays with great delicacy, refining her tone right down, flecking the line with a discreet style-conscious portamento. Her conception rightly draws attention to characterisation of fragility, not least in its deeply Delian passages. Though the finale is the weakest movement it has a frolicsome giocoso quality that, when heard in the context of its reflective B section, generates real energy.

By chance I’ve just been reading a biography of Francis Moore, who served as Maud Powell’s accompanist for a while and with whom he gave many performances of the Coleridge-Taylor Concerto in piano-reduced form. It was a work she took to her heart and its qualities have ensured recordings in the last few years. There’s a strong debt to Dvořák, not least rhythmically, but the brassy confidence of the music’s rhetoric is just as winning. There’s a real uniformity of approach to the opening movement from Little, McAslan (Lyrita SRCD317), Philippe Graffin (Avie AV0044) and Anthony Marwood (Hyperion CDA67420) who all take much the same way with the tempo relations between the sections. Rather amazingly, judged by the stopwatch, there’s a difference of just ten seconds between all of them in this movement. In the slow movement Marwood plays the McAslan figure, taking quite a forward-moving tempo. Little unfolds the music like Scheherazade, and with a wistful tenderness, before digging in to the March themes and renewed Dvořák influence of the finale.

Delius’ early Suite wasn’t performed until 1984 and is not really characteristic. It’s strongly indebted to Grieg, and Little – as is her wont with this composer – takes her judicious time over its four pleasing movements. Programmatically it offers repose between the two passionate concertos that surround it. Delius lovers will remember Ralph Holmes’ pioneering Unicorn recording of this with great admiration. There's also a well-received recording on Dutton from Philippe Graffin.

Chandos’s sound quality offers a big acoustic in which the music can expand; in Dutton’s case the Wood is more focused, and similar observations apply to the Avie and Hyperion Coleridge-Taylor. In the end decision-making may be related to couplings. McAslan paired the Wood with Lionel Sainsbury’s truly excellent contemporary Concerto. With the Johannesburg Philharmonic Graffin logically paired the Coleridge-Taylor with the Dvořák and Marwood coupled it with Somervell’s Concerto. For qualities of command and sensitivity and for the estimable collaboration with both orchestra and conductor, Tasmin Little’s performances stand tall.

Jonathan Woolf



 

 



Advertising on
Musicweb


Donate and keep us afloat

 

New Releases

Naxos Classical
All Naxos reviews

Chandos recordings
All Chandos reviews

Hyperion recordings
All Hyperion reviews

Foghorn recordings
All Foghorn reviews

Troubadisc recordings
All Troubadisc reviews


all cpo reviews

Divine Art recordings
Click to see New Releases
Get 10% off using code musicweb10
All Divine Art reviews


All APR reviews

Lyrita recordings
All Lyrita Reviews

 

Wyastone New Releases
Obtain 10% discount

Recordings of the Month

November 2022
Bach
Bach Orchestral Suites

del Cinque
Del Cinque Cello sonatas

Fujita Mozart
Mao Fujita Mozart

Stanczyk
Stanczyk Acousmatic Music

Oropesa

October 2022

Berg Violin Concerto
Violin Concerto Elmes

DEbussy Jeux
Debussy Jeux

Romantic pioano masters
Romantic Piano Masters

The future is female - Vol 2
Volume 2 - The Dance

impromptu harp music
Complete Harp Impromptus