Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Symphonies at their Half-Century 1964

Arthur Butterworth: Symphony No 2 (First Performance 1965) No recording available
Benjamin Frankel: Symphony No 3, Op 40  CPO 9994212
Alan Rawsthorne: Symphony No 3  Two versions available
Humphrey Searle: Symphony No 5, Op 43
Daniel Jones: Symphony No 5 No recording available
Daniel Jones: Symphony No 6
Wilfred Josephs: Symphony No 2, Op 42 1963-4 (First Performance Cheltenham, 5 July 1965) No recording available
Kenneth Leighton: Symphony No 1, Op 42
Bernard Stevens: Symphony No 2, Op 35
Malcolm Williamson: The Display, Dance Symphony No recording available
John McCabe: Symphony for 10 Wind Instruments  No recording available
William Lovelock: Sinfonietta No recording available
Robert Still:  Symphony No 4

I suppose that out of 13 symphonies to have 7 of them recorded is not too bad. I know that there are private recording of one or two other works.  
I believe that the main desiderata music be Arthur Butterworth’s Second Symphony (based on reviews of the work that I have collected) and Daniel Jones’s Symphony No.5.  Bearing in mind Hyperion’s interest recently shown in the complete piano concertos of Malcolm Williamson, it is perhaps hopeful that someone’s attention will turn to the symphonies and orchestral music.  Wilfred Josephs seems to have disappeared from view: there are currently only a baker’s dozen of works on CD. But based on the few orchestral pieces I have heard from this composer, his time for reappraisal may be coming soon.   John McCabe is always a deserving composer, and I am surprised that this Symphony for 10 Wind Instruments does not appear to be recorded. William Lovelock (899-1986) suffers from being associated with student’s guides on harmony, counterpoint and musical form. However, he has written a number of works including ten concertos and some music for orchestra some of which have been recorded.  He tends to write in a ‘romantic’ style. 

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