Join us on Friday 2 September for the launch of one of the most exciting and important discs we have yet made: ‘Now Comes Beauty’, a double-disc set incorporating new commissions from The English Music Festival. Featuring works by Richard Blackford, Paul Carr, Matthew Curtis, Philip Lane, Paul Lewis, David Owen Norris, John Pickard and Christopher Wright, performed by the BBC Concert Orchestra conducted by Gavin Sutherland and Owain Arwel Hughes and with soloists Rupert Marshall-Luck, David Owen Norris and Roderick Williams, this new recording presents the scintillating and the thought-provoking alongside the lyrical and the atmospheric.
The launch event will be held in the Recital Room at Schott’s in central London and will include a panel discussion featuring composers and artists. Tickets, which cost £15.00 (to include refreshments), are available from the EVENTS TICKETS page, on the door, or by sending a cheque for the correct amount and made payable to ‘EMF Endeavours’ to: Em Marshall-Luck, Suite M 0222, 265–269 Kingston Road, Wimbledon, London, SW19 3NW.
EM Records is delighted to announce the release of another recording from the Bridge Quartet, who appear alongside the internationally acclaimed pianist Michael Dussek and the tenor Charles Daniels.
This CD commemorates and celebrates the talents of a golden generation of English lyricists through the voices of the greatest song-writer composers of the era. The lives of two of these, George Butterworth and Ivor Gurney, remain inextricably linked to the catastrophic 1914-18 conflict played out over the fields of Flanders. The poignancy of their songs comprise an intimate journal, encapsulating moods of innocence and naivety, transience and despair epitomised by the poetry of Housman and Gurney’s 1919 song cycle ‘Ludlow and Teme’.
The Bridge Quartet also introduces two World Première recordings. Butterworth’s miniaturist Suite for String Quartet (1910) is a eulogy to the ‘untouchable England’ before the First World War, but also a perfectly expressed prophetic warning from a young man extinguished in his prime. Gurney’s epic nine-minute Adagio (1925) is a moving threnody from a survivor trying bravely to express in music the pain of living on with the consequences of what he encountered.
In recent months we have recorded three more discs which are planned for issue later this year. In March we visited a tiny and isolated but beautiful church in the Yorkshire Dales for a solo-violin disc with fiendishly virtuosic music by Elgar, Tovey and Albert Sammons; and the following month we set down on disc the complete music for violin and piano by Hubert Parry, which we recorded at Potton Hall. This was a thrilling project, not least because the manuscripts of several previously unknown works by Parry turned up in the Bodleian just days before our recording. Thankfully, we were able to transcribe them in time and include them on the recording – which, it now appears, will be a triple disc set.
Last month we returned to Watford Colosseum to record Cowen’s Symphony no.5 and the magnificent Concerto for Violin and Cello by Percy Sherwood with the BBC Concert Orchestra conducted by John Andrews, and with violinist Rupert Marshall-Luck and cellist Joseph Spooner. The Sherwood is a big-boned, substantial, intense, passionate and romantic work, bursting with energy and vigour, which dates from the early years of the twentieth century. It was given its première performance at the 2016 English Music Festival, at which it was clear both from the highly virtuosic performance, and the reception with which the work was accorded (including a spontaneous round of applause at the end of the first movement), that its erstwhile neglect has been wholly unjustified, and that we have discovered a truly romantic masterpiece.
Our next recording takes place in September at which we will be recording the spectacular and moving pieces that the English Music Festival commissioned for performance at our Yorkshire Autumn Festival last year from the composers Paul Carr, Paul Lewis, Richard Pantcheff, Lionel Sainsbury and Francis Pott. Each of these works uses as its inspiration the life and historical perspectives of Richard III; so it is especially fitting that the recording will be made in the church that Richard III himself attended during his periods of residence at Middleham Castle.
EMR CD028 | INTERNATIONAL