Playing time: 73 mins.
As a trained clarinettist, many of Sir Harrison Birtwistles most significant chamber works have been written for wind instruments. Many of these important works have not, until now, been well represented within the recording catalogues.
The Galliard Ensemble was formed in 1993 comprising entirely of graduates from the Royal Academy of Music, London. It has a stunning reputation for performances, recordings, broadcasts and for the commissioning of contemporary works. Also joining them on the CD is the highly acclaimed pianist Richard Shaw, Head of Keyboard skills and Staff Accompanist at the Royal Academy of Music, who has worked with many leading composers and instrumentalists.
they perform with expertise a varied selection of Birtwistles wind
ensemble works covering a broad range of instrumentation, influences and
structure. Extending from his first published and acknowledged wind ensemble
Refrains and Choruses (1957), to the beautiful, melancholic Sad Song (1971)
for solo piano, to the Duets for Storab (1983) for two flutes, and to
An Interrupted Endless Melody (1991) for oboe and piano. Each piece, though
typically Birtwistlian, embraces flavours and influences from composers
such as Satie, Vaughan Williams, Stravinsky and Varese, whilst individually
exploring the possibilities of varied musical form.
interrupted Endless Melody
brisk, bracing, bravura Birtwistle recital from a young ensemble of considerable
Critics Choice 2001 - Gramophone *