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English String Miniatures, Vol. 4
Peter [Composer] Hope, Frank Bridge, Adam Carse
English String Miniatures, Vol. 4
Genres: Special Interest, Classical
  •  Track Listings (17) - Disc #1


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Beginning a Survey at the End: Less Familiar British Works f
Grady Harp | Los Angeles, CA United States | 07/20/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"The very fine concept and well-executed 'English String Miniatures' adds great depth to the appreciation of that particular British sound dealing with string orchestras. This Volume Four is most appealing because it offers works unfamiliar to most of us. David Lloyd-Jones conducts the fine Northern Sinfonia in performances that are assured, finely detailed and capture that special mood that suffuses each of these charming works.

One surprise to this listener was the work of Peter Hope whose 'Momentum Suite' opens this concert. The work incorporates tunes and dance melodies in the first two movements and rollicks in the third movement to an ever increasing rapid tarantella-like spin. Frank Bridge, one of the hallowed greats of English composers, is well represented with his 'Valse-Intermezzo' and 'Scherzo Phantastick' (sic), the latter in an arrangement from his string quartet in E minor.

Other less well-known but very fine composers - Adam Carse ('Sketches'), Ernest Tomlinson ('Graceful Dance') and Paul Lewis ('English Suite') provide diversions in the midportion of the recording and the final works include Holst's 'A Moorside Suite' and Delius' beautiful 'Aquarelles' (from his 'songs to be sung on a summer night').

David Lloyd-Jones has a particular affinity for this music and he draws lush string playing from the Northern Sinfonia. It makes an interesting diversion to begin listening to this four-volume set of English String Miniatures with Volume Four and creates a commitment to buy the other three volumes! Grady Harp, July 06