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CHAN 10105
Star    2 Ratings
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CHAN 10105

Gregson: Blazon/ Violin Concerto/Clarinet Concerto/Stepping Out

The Classical Shop
release date: August 2003

Recorded in 24 Bit / 96Khz

Originally recorded in 2002

Artists:

BBC Philharmonic


Martyn Brabbins


Michael Collins

clarinet*

Olivier Charlier

violin†

Venue:

Studio 7, New Broadcasting House, Manchester



Producer:

Brian Pidgeon

(Executive)

Mike George

(Recording)

Engineer:

Stephen Rinker


Sharon Hughes

(Assistant)

Record Label
Chandos

Genre:

Violin


Orchestral & Concertos

Total Time - 74:14
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EDWARD GREGSON

(b. 1945)
Select Complete Single Disc for
   
  premiere recordings  
   
1 

Blazon (1992)

10:19
  for orchestra  
  Jubilantly! - Tempo II (Steadier, dance-like) -  
 

Clarinet Concerto (1994, revised 2002)*

31:37  
2 Part One. Slowly - Not too fast, but with energy (Doppio movimento) - 12:46
3 Part Two. Quite slowly - Moving forward - 18:45
   
4 

Stepping Out (1996)

3:20
  for string orchestra  
  Very lively and rhythmic - A little faster (Tempestuous)  
 

Violin Concerto (1999, revised 2001)†

29:04  
5 I Flowing - Faster, but steadily - More relaxed - 11:20
6 II Slow and pensive - A little faster - Broader - 10:40
7 III Fast, dance-like - Same tempo, but more relaxed - 7:04
Edward Gregson is one of Britain’s most versatile composers, whose music has been performed, broadcast and recorded worldwide. His concerti for wind instruments are established repertoire in many countries. A noted conductor of contemporary music, Edward Gregson has also held numerous academic posts and is currently Principal of the Royal Northern College of Music.

All of the works on this CD are premiere recordings and the Clarinet Concerto is here performed by the soloist for whom it was written.

Internationally renowned violinist Olivier Charlier was described by BBC Music Magazine as ‘staggeringly virtuosic’. Charlier was the soloist in Chandos’ recordings of concertos by Lalo, Schurmann, Dutilleux and Gerhard, all of which received outstanding reviews.

Martyn Brabbins and the BBC Philharmonic have proved a superb combination in Chandos’ recordings of music by Bax, Clifford and Bainton, which received tremendous critical acclaim.


"Gregson was taught never to write notes that were not absolutely necessary. 'I can't stand the sentimental in music', he has said. He learned much from the structural clarity of Bartók and Hindemith, the economy and incisiveness of Stravinsky, the rhythmic flair of Walton and the simple modality of Vaughan Williams. To that list of influences one could also add Tippett, Lutoslawski, Messiaen and John Adams. This is a consciously eclectic mix, informing an approach to writing which is rigorous, disciplined and rooted firmly within the symphonic mainstream, and amply demonstrated in the four works recorded here.

A vivid and energetic work, Blazon was first performed in 1992. Gregson divides his large orchestra into concertante groups, each given its own music.The Clarinet Concerto was commissioned by the BBC for the musicians who have recorded it here.They gave the first performance in Manchester in 1994.

Gregson describes Stepping Out, composed in 1996 for the String Orchestra of the Royal Northern College of Music, as a short, 'up-front' kind of piece in an internationally eclectic style: 'John Adams meets Shostakovich, with a bit of Gregson thrown in.' The Violin Concerto is Gregson's Millennium piece, first performed in 2000. It is his most overtly neoromantic work to date. 'I find it impossible to resist the temptation to look back and give some respectful nods in certain musical directions', says Gregson. Concerto 'spotters' may hear echoes of works by Prokofiev,Walton, Elgar and even Szymanowski, but the underlying musical argument is very much Gregson's own.
"

Martyn Brabbins directs a set of performances as crisply polished as they are infectious, and Chandoss sound is characteristically sumptuous to match.
Gramophone on CHAN 9879 (Bax)

They are beautifully played by Michael Collins and Olivier Charlier, and would make a Christmas offering to treasure throughout 2004.
Gramophone

Ivan March They are beautifully played by Michael Collins and Olivier Charlier, and would make a Christmas offering to treasure throughout 2004.'
Gramophone

'He [Gregson] speaks to a large audience, without sacrificing integrity. With superb performances and sound… this is a release of vital, attractive and immensely likeable music.'
International Record Review

'The recordings are vivid and warmly atmospheric; if you care about contemporary British orchestral music, I cannot recommend this CD too highly.'
Gramophone Editor's Choice

If you care about contemporary British orchestral music, I cannot recommend this CD too highly.
Gramophone ‘Editors Choice’ and ‘Critics’ Choice 2003’

The recordings are vivid and warmly atmospheric; if you care about contemporary British orchestral music, I cannot recommend this CD too highly.
Gramophone (Editor's Choice)

What a remarkably adaptable conductor is Martyn Brabbins – able to sound keen and in intelligent control in British music from Arnold Bax to Harrison Birtwistle.
BBC Music Magazine on CHAN 9879 (Bax)

'Brabbins and his intrepid band seem to be having the time of their lives playing this challengingly expert music, and so will you. Recommendations is immediate and automatic.'
Fanfare

…Martyn Brabbins… secures a splendidly secure and committed response from the BBC Philharmonic, and the disc as a whole certainly merits the investigation of any reader who enjoys venturing off the beaten track.
Gramophone ‘Editor’s Choice’ on CHAN 10019 (Clifford/Bainton)

He [Gregson] speaks to a large audience, without sacrificing integrity. With superb performances and sound… this is a release of vital, attractive and immensely likeable music.
International Record Review




*****
R Lawford

*****
S Russell