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Naxos Featured CDs

Violin Concertos (British) - PATTERSON, P. / LEIGHTON, K. / JACOB, G.

British Violin Concertos
Paul PATTERSON (b. 1947) Violin Concerto No. 2 (‘Serenade’)
Kenneth LEIGHTON (1929–1988) Concerto for Violin and Small Orchestra, Op. 12
Gordon JACOB (1895–1984) Concerto for Violin and String Orchestra
Clare Howick, Violin • BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra • Grant Llewellyn
Listen to TRACK 1:
PATTERSON, P.: Violin Concerto No. 2,
“Serenade”: I. Toccata

These three major British concertos span fully 70 years. Kenneth Leighton’s Concerto is a work of tensile urgency, scored with great imagination, and ending in an arch-like Epilogue of impassioned intensity. Written for soloist and string orchestra, the Concerto by Gordon Jacob contains at its heart a threnodic slow movement cast in long, moving paragraphs and accompanied by poetic effects. Written for (and premiered by) the soloist in this recording, Paul Patterson’s Violin Concerto No. 2 (‘Serenade’) is rich in high spirits; songlike, wistful and exuberantly sparkling.


MAYR, J.S.: Miserere in G Minor / Litaniae lauretanae de Beata Virgine Maria in G Minor

Johann Simon MAYR (1763–1845)
Miserere 1
Litaniae Lauretanae 2

Jaewon Yun 1 and Andrea Lauren Brown 2, Sopranos
Theresa Holzhauser, Alto
Markus Schäfer 2 and Robert Sellier 1, Tenors
Jens Hamann 1 and Virgil Mischok 2, Basses
Members of the Bavarian State Opera Chorus • Simon Mayr Chorus
Concerto de Bassus 1 • I Virtuosi Italiani 2
Franz Hauk
Listen to TRACK 8:
Miserere in G Minor: VIII. Sacrificium Deo

Mayr had already earned esteem in Venice for his church music when, in 1802, he assumed the post of maestro di cappella at the basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore in Bergamo. With a modest orchestra at his disposal he soon composed a Miserere in G minor, in which solo orchestral instruments often carry on a dialogue with the vocal soloists in a succession of powerful, descriptive and beautiful arias and choruses. The Litaniae Lauretanae, cast in three parts, features wide leaping figures and sighing melodies.


SAINT-SAËNS, C.: Symphonic Poems

Camille SAINT-SAËNS (1835–1921)
Symphonic Poems
La Jeunesse d’Hercule
Le Rouet d’Omphale • Phaéton
Danse macabre

Orchestre National de Lille
Jun Märkl

Listen to TRACK 4:
Le Rouet d’Omphale, Op. 31

Though Berlioz and, to a lesser extent, Franck wrote symphonic poems, it is
Saint-Saëns who has been largely credited with introducing the genre to France. A wide orchestral palette and stirring reserves of drama are used to evoke the youthful audacity and death of Phaéton, the ultimate triumph of virtue over pleasure in La Jeunesse d’Hercule (‘The Youth of Hercules’), and Hercules’ punishment, spinning wool while dressed as a woman, for the ‘inadvertent murder’ of one of his guests, in Le Rouet d’Omphale (‘The Spinning Wheel of Omphale’). The ever-popular Danse macabre is a spooky depiction of Death playing a dance on his fiddle on a tomb in a graveyard surrounded by skeletal dancers.


PROKOFIEV, S.: Peter and the Wolf / BRITTEN: Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Children's Classics)

Sergey PROKOFIEV (1891–1953)
Peter and the Wolf 1
BRITTEN, B.: The Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra 1
POULENC, F.: Babar the Elephant 2

Everage 1 • B. Humphries 2 • Melbourne Symphony Orchestra • Lanchbery
Listen to TRACK 2:
Peter and the Wolf, Op. 67: The Story Begins...

“Using her own enthusiastically expanded version of the original commentary, Dame Edna Everage is sure to draw any young possum into the world of the orchestra. Her exuberance offsets any twee moments, and the Melbourne Orchestra illustrate vivid instrumental descriptions with splendidly alive and colourful playing. The Naxos recording is excellent and, with its highly enjoyable couplings, this inexpensive triptych is warmly recommendable.” – The Penguin Guide




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