Archive for Guest Blog

Stravinsky and Me

The longest piece on the new Toccata Classics album of my choral works is A Lenten Cantata. It was premiered in 2017 with organ and… 

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Too Many Symphonies? — Part two: Fridrich Bruk

Having traversed the symphonies of Robert Keeley in Part One of this brief survey (Too Many Symphonies – Part One – posted on 9 March… 

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Music for a Prince, Music by a Prince: How Our Recording Came About

As a student I was engaged in postgraduate research at Cambridge on the works of Sir William Walton. At the time, I noticed that one… 

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Too Many Symphonies? – Part One: Rob Keeley

Sometime in the 1950s, when John Barbirolli famously said ‘there are too many symphonies this year, or any year’, he might have been weary after… 

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Reflections on Recording The Rosner ‘Requiem’

It has given me so much pleasure to read the wonderful reviews of the Rosner Requiem recording, where discerning critics have enthusiastically endorsed the great… 

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Recording Francis George Scott’s Piano Music

Two years after I began to record it, the first-ever album of Francis George Scott’s piano music is now available. The programme as it appears… 

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Reflections on the Life and Work of Friedrich Gernsheim – With Some Help from the Young People of Worms

Ever since, some years ago, I heard the State Philharmonic Orchestra of Rhineland-Palatinate performing a symphony by Friedrich Gernsheim (1839–1916), I have been seeking to… 

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Some Thoughts on Marcel Mihalovici’s Left-Hand ‘Passacaille’

On 2 October Toccata Classics releases the first-ever album of the piano music of the Romanian-born, Paris-based Marcel Mihalovici (1898–1985), in performances by the Berlin-based… 

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Prokofiev’s Violin Partnerships

At the beginning of October Toccata Classics will release a new album, by the violinist Yuri Kalnits and pianist Yulia Chaplina, of music by Prokofiev… 

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Elcock: From One Fifth To Another

Steve Elcock has mastered the fast introduction. A device favoured by Berlioz gets a new lease of life: both Elcock’s Third (2005–10) and this new… 

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Songs of Love, Sorrow and Satire (And Not Forgetting the Baboon!): Recording Hans Gál’s Music for Voices

One of the proudest, happiest and most surreal moments in my singing career to date has been uttering the final notes of a choral concert… 

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Some Thoughts on My First Volume of Philipp Scharwenka’s Piano Music

My contact with Philipp Scharwenka’s music came from my in-depth study of the great Portuguese pianist José Vianna da Motta (1868–1948), who, at the age… 

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A Selfie With Napoleon: Some Even More Modest Memories and ‘Previntable’ Mistakes on my Antheil Trail

Reading Martin Anderson’s ‘modest memories’ of André Previn brought to mind that, during my millennial research on George Antheil (bearing fruit, among other places, in… 

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Remembering Roger Smalley

A new Toccata Classics release restores to circulation the music of a composer who was both a cutting-edge modernist and an enthusiast for Romantic figures… 

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Cooking Up A Symphony: Steve Elcock Examines What Makes A Good Recipe

After I posted a recipe on one of the social networks, two composer friends suggested, jokingly, that I should come up with a recipe for… 

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‘A Gigantic Bear Hug’ From Scotland

The third volume of Ronald Stevenson’s piano music (TOCC 0403, released on 1 February) has been probably the most interesting album of his music I’ve… 

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