ClassicsOnline Home » BLAKE, H.: Violin Sonata / Piano Quartet / Penillion / Jazz Dances (Mitchell, Rothstein, Essex, Willison, Blake) > Review List



BLAKE, H.: Violin Sonata / Piano Quartet / Penillion / Jazz Dances (Mitchell, Rothstein, Essex, Willison, Blake)

Composer(s):Blake, Howard
Artist(s)
Period(s) Contemporary
Genre Classical Music
Category Chamber Music
Catalogue 8.572083
Label Naxos
Quality   320kbps
Album Price
 
MP3
USD 6.99
 

 


In addition to his distinguished career as a pianist and conductor, Howard Blake is a popular and prolific composer who has received an OBE for services to music. Besides film scores (which include the extraordinarily successful and popular The Snowman), choral, orchestral and instrumental works, ballets and opera, his output includes much chamber music. This disc presents world première recordings of four important works; the virtuosic Violin Sonata, the hauntingly beautiful Penillion, the sunshine-filled Piano Quartet with its touching slow movement, and the Jazz Dances, which, in the composer’s words, ‘pay mischievous but affectionate homage to the rhythmic intricacies of popular dance forms’.


   




Review By Robert R. Reilly,Catholic News Agency,October 2011

Blake’s engaging melodiousness lies somewhere between Dvorák and salon music. Certainly, “Penillion” has the warmth of Dvorák. I suppose that one reaction to these works might be slight condescension due to the popular aspect of their melodies; the other reaction, which is mine, is simply to appreciate this very easy-to-enjoy music. Quite surprisingly, considering that some of them go back to 1974, all of these works are receiving their world premiere recordings. The string quartet music is played most engagingly by the Edinburgh Quartet, and the various soloists on the second CD are equally fine. Read complete review



Review By Julian Haylock,Classic FM,January 2009

One of the most distinguished and versatile of contemporary English composers, Howard Blake first won fame for his enchanting music to The Snowman. His music for the concert hall includes the popular Nursery Rhyme Overture and a glorious Piano Concerto. This world-premiere recording of four chamber masterworks, overflowing with beguiling melodies and catchy rhythms, should win Blake many new admirers. Beautifully written and performed by an all-star line-up, these enchanting scores will be loved by anyone who adores Schumann or Brahms.




Review By David Denton, Naxos,November 2008

‘Howard Blake, the British composer of music for the animated film The Snowman’ could well be the misguided description for one of the UK’s most versatile musicians.

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