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Stephen Dodgson: Chamber Music, Volume Two: Three Quintets

These three quintets by the London-born Stephen Dodgson (1924–2013) continue the exploration of his chamber music on Toccata Classics. Dodgson’s musical language inherited something of Shostakovich’s irony, Janáček’s spiky energy and Britten’s polished clarity, occasionally reaching further into the past in passages of Purcellian dignity, all animated with a gentle harmonic warmth of Dodgson’s own. The result, in a typically English paradox, manages to be both elusive and direct.

Tippett Quartet
Emma Abbate, piano (Tracks 1-4, 8-10)
Susan Monks, cello (Tracks 5-7)

Stephen DODGSON: Chamber Music, Volume Four: Music for Winds I

This fourth album in the Toccata Classics survey of the chamber music of London- born Stephen Dodgson (1924–2013) offers a first instalment of his many works for woodwinds. Much of it brings Dodgson’s sense of fun to the fore, often through rhythmic mischief or an insouciance that recalls Poulenc, but it also has that particularly English strain of lyricism that suggests the impermanence of beauty.

Kate Howden, mezzo-soprano (Tracks 4–7)
Magnard Ensemble (Tracks 1–3, 17–21)
Suzannah Clements, flute (Tracks 1–3)
Mana Shibata, oboe (Tracks 8–10, 14–16)
Joseph Shiner, clarinet (Tracks 4–10)
Catriona McDermid, bassoon (Tracks 8–10, 14–16)
Jonathan Farey, horn (Tracks 11–13)
Suling King, piano (Tracks 4–7, 11–16)

Stephen Dodgson: Chamber Music, Volume Three: Music for Oboe

This third album in the Toccata Classics survey of the chamber music of London-born Stephen Dodgson (1924–2013) focuses on his works for oboe. It shows a master- craftsman at work: Dodgson fuses a Baroque sense of clarity, a modern English elegance that has echoes of Britten and Tippett and a hint of eastern European mystery. His writing for oboe has a strong sense of narrative, touching a range of moods, from deep emotion to tongue-in-cheek fun.

James Turnbull, oboe
Libby Burgess, piano (Tracks 1-6, 11-22)
EleanorTurner,harp (Tracks 7-10)
Robyn Allegra Parton, soprano (Tracks 15-17)

Stephen Dodgson: Chamber Music, Volume One: Complete Music for Cello and Piano

The cello works of the London-born Stephen Dodgson (1924–2013) present his musical personality in a nutshell. The style is direct but rich in allusion, from Purcell to Janáček, with a lively, sometimes brittle, sense of humour adding a Shostakovichian irony, all fused together in an elegant, individual voice. And the remarkable clarity of the instrumental textures underlines a strong sense of narrative, with the cello almost as a human voice, unfolding its story with understated passion.

Evva Mizerska, cello
Emma Abbate, piano

Exploring Stephen Dodgson’s Chamber Music

It is very exciting for me, as Stephen Dodgson’s widow, to report that Toccata Classics will be releasing a series of recordings of his chamber… 

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Algernon Ashton and Stephen Dodgson: A Brief Introduction to Two English Composers

A brief introduction to the music of Algernon Ashton and a discussion with Jane Clark Dodgson about her late husband, Stephen Dodgson, in St Margaret… 

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