William Wordsworth: Orchestral Music, Volume Three

Catalogue No: TOCC0600
EAN/UPC: 5060113446008
Release Date: 2021-05-07
Composer: William Wordsworth
Artists: Florian Arnicans, John Gibbons, Liepaja Symphony Orchestra

The music of William Wordsworth (1908–88) – a great-great-grandson of the poet’s brother Christopher – lies downstream from that of Vaughan Williams and Sibelius; like that of his contemporary Edmund Rubbra, Wordsworth’s music unfolds spontaneously, as a natural process. This third volume of his orchestral works brings two major scores in their first studio recordings. Wordsworth’s Cello Concerto is a work of symphonic proportions, blending angular rough-and-tumble with a sober lyricism in a style that sits somewhere between Shostakovich and Bloch. The Fifth Symphony has an even grander sense of scale, its radiant first movement and the introduction to the confident finale unfolding as calmly and unhurriedly as a change of season; the martial tone of the gruff scherzo, by contrast, is laced through by an impish sense of humour.

Florian Arnicans, cello (Tracks 1-3)
Liepāja Symphony Orchestra
John Gibbons, conductor

Listen To This Recording:

    Cello Concerto, Op. 73 (1963)

  1. I Allegretto
  2. II Nocturne: Lento
  3. III Allegro vivace
  4. Symphony No. 5 in A minor, Op. 68 (1957–60)

  5. I Andante maestoso
  6. II Allegro
  7. III Andante largamente – Allegro


1 review for William Wordsworth: Orchestral Music, Volume Three

  1. :

    ‘As with the previous two discs in Toccata’s series, John Gibbons is a most persuasive, one might almost say, loyal, advocate for Wordsworth’s music. He is in full command of the Liepaja orchestra in his pursuit of the composer’s all-important rhythmic pulse and sense of orchestral detail. Most important, he communicates his sense of the importance of Wordsworth’s music. […] His performances are bound to make new admirers for the composer. By now, the Liepaja orchestra has Wordsworth’s music completely in their bloodstream and sound as if they have been playing it for decades. The woodwinds are always essential to the Wordsworth “sound”, both singly and in groups, and the Liepaja players acquit themselves well, as do the equally important xylophone and celesta players. It is fitting that the cello soloist on this disc is Florian Arnicans as his wife Arta Arnicane was the piano soloist on Vol. 2. He masters Wordsworth’s seriousness and occasional brittleness, but has a broad, rich tone when needed. I strongly hope Toccata is planning more entries in their Wordsworth series.’

    —William Kreindler, MusicWeb International

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