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CHAN 10155
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CHAN 10155
Orchestral Works, Vol.2

Bax: Orchestral Works, Volume 2

The Classical Shop
release date: September 2003

Originally recorded in 2002

Artists:

Royal Philharmonic Orchestra


London Philharmonic Orchestra


Bryden Thomson


Vernon Handley



Venue:

All Saints' Church, Tooting, London



Producer:

Brian Couzens



Engineer:

Ralph Couzens


Philip Couzens

(Assistant)

Record Label
Chandos Classics

Genre:

Orchestral & Concertos




Total Time - 66:36
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Orchestral Works, Vol.2

 

ARNOLD BAX

(1883-1953)
Select Complete Single Disc for
  Orchestral Works, Volume 2  
   
 

Spring Fire

30:32  
  Symphony  
1 I In the Forest before Dawn 3:25
2 II Daybreak and Sunrise 3:41
3 III Full Day 7:24
4 IV Woodland Love (Romance) 8:19
5 V Maenads 7:43
6 

Northern Ballad No. 2

16:04
 Vernon Handley
7 

Northern Ballad No. 3

8:36
  (Prelude for a Solemn Occasion)  
8 

Mediterranean

3:54
 Bryden Thomson
9 

Symphonic Scherzo

7:30
 Vernon Handley
This is the second volume in Chandos’ series of orchestral works by Arnold Bax, released for the first time on Chandos’ mid-price reissue label.

This re-coupling brings together some of the composer’s less well-known but hugely colourful tone-poems for the first time.

These recordings received tremendous praise on their first release, both for their quality of sound and for their performances, as one would expect from these two conductors who were closely associated with the composer.


"The British composer Sir Arnold Bax came to maturity at the time Richard Strauss, Debussy and Sibelius were first appreciated. Although Bax was enchanted by these composers, their influence was soon absorbed into a highly personal musical language. Bax’s reputation rests largely on his orchestral music and yet many of his colourful and evocative scores remained unheard until these recordings. At the climax of his early maturity, Bax’s development became stimulated by the fashionable paganism engendered by Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes. In this mood Swinburne’s poem Atalanta in Calydon was the inspiration for Spring Fire. It was probably his most unlucky score! Its scheduled performances were cancelled three times and in 1964 the only remaining manuscript was destroyed in a fire. Later another score was discovered, but for several years the work was believed irretrievable.

A number of Bax’s orchestral works were first written for piano and his previously unknown Symphonic Scherzo for Orchestra is all that survives of a Piano Sonata which immediately followed Spring Fire. It was orchestrated and performed at a Promenade concert in 1919. The version recorded here is a from a revised edition made in 1933, which until this recording had remained unplayed. In the Northern Ballads we find Bax responding to the influence of Sibelius, a fascination which informs the changes in Bax’s style found after about 1930.
"

Highly idiomatic playing from Vernon Handley and the RPO, and a thoroughly life-like and characteristically well-detailed recording from Chandos.
The Penguin Complete Guide

… is a most important addition to the Bax discography and receives a performance of great power and refinement.
Gramophone



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