Impressions Gentle classical favourites to create a peaceful mood This serene collection of classical music for orchestra and solo piano provides an oasis of calmness and tranquillity in the midst of a frantic world. Music is a powerful and mysterious art. With the simplest of means it is able to conjure up a mood, emotion or atmosphere and instantly draw the listener in. Centuries ago the wealthy paid a fortune to composers and performers to provide them with music to raise their spirits or simply help them relax. Now everyone can enjoy these benefits. This collection has been specially selected from the most restful music of the past three hundred years to help us relax today. The album takes us from dawn to nightfall on a perfect, tranquil day. In Morning the Norwegian composer Edvard Grieg exactly captures the optimism and freshness of daybreak and the golden glow of the rising sun. Long, lingering melodies feature in both Solveig's Song and in The Swan (tracks 2 and 4). Calm skies and dappled sunlight are reflected in extracts from Swan Lake, and the still midday heat soothes the dreamer in one of Robert Schumann's Scenes from Childhood. Claude Debussy's The Afternoon of a Faun is one of the most evocative depictions of a hot, lazy afternoon in all music. The hazy heat wafts in during the opening flute solo and the dreamy atmosphere is disturbed by nothing more than a gentle breeze and the rustling of the leaves on nearby trees. Debussy's exquisite piano piece The Sounds and Perfumes Turn in the Evening Air evokes the atmosphere of a peaceful garden in the early evening, and Beethoven's famous Moonlight sonata completes the picture: night has arrived. Beethoven's slow and eloquent evocation of moonlight is one of classical music's most famous piano pieces. The Polish composer Fryderyk Chopin was the undisputed master of the Nocturne (night-piece) for solo piano. He composed many examples of this style of piece, all of them filled with the most beautiful melodies. The two lovely examples on this album build up an atmosphere of shimmering night time, and continue the moonlight theme. The final track on the album, the slow movement of his Second Piano Concerto, is composed in similar vein. It is full of the romance and poetry of the darkest night, and the solo piano benefits this time from the support of an accompanying orchestra.