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British Piano Concertos

Simon Callaghan, Martyn Brabbins and the BBC National Orchestra of Wales team up for this new recording which draws on the lighter side of musical life in repertoire which cannot fail to provoke a smile!

Smaller concertos for piano and modest orchestral forces were a feature of British composition in the first half of the 20th century, often written for a special occasion. As is often the case with first performances of contemporary music, these works were typically destined to vanish into oblivion thereafter, and this new recording seeks to re-establish their place in the repertoire as exciting and vibrant pieces which will bring joy and intrigue to the listener.

Indeed, while searching for enticing music to record with a smaller numbers of players, Simon Callaghan was thrilled to uncover this treasury: short concertos written for entertainment, perhaps for a single occasion, but of a quality that makes them deserve to be heard in the years to come.

The listener will travel through the innocent pastiche of Bush’s tribute to Arne, Rubbra’s student essay, the ‘Blues’ of Benjamin, the serial language of Searle, the intense drama of Maconchy, and the bold humour of film composer, Addison. It is all great fun, and has never been recorded - apart from the Benjamin which was recorded just once, back in 1959. Enjoy!

*2 nominations received for MusicWeb International Recording of the Year 2022 (read more here)

John AddisonWellington Suite
Arthur BenjaminConcertino
Humphrey SearleConcertante
RubbraNature's Song
Geoffrey BushA Little Concerto (on Themes of Arne)
SRCD407 Cover 300dpi