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Dedication In Time - Chamber Music By Margaret Hubicki


Release Date: 07/26/2005 
Label:  Chandos   Catalog #: 10322   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Margaret Hubicki
Performer:  Frederick StockenJames KirbyRobert MaxDaniel Pailthorpe,   ... 
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bochmann String Quartet
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
In Stock: Usually ships in 24 hours.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews





Given that all but Lonely Mere and Rigaudon are here, according to Chandos, receiving their first outings on record, I assume that Margaret Hubicki (b. 1915) is a name as unknown to most readers as it was to me. So first let me tell you a little of what I learned about her from the enclosed booklet note. Nee Margaret (or Peggy, as she is better known) Mullins, she is of English birth, and studied at the Royal Academy of Music under Benjamin Dale during the 1930s. The note states that her Irish Fantasy , heard on this CD in its original solo Read more piano version, was later orchestrated by the composer and was premiered by Sir Malcom Sargent and the London PO in 1938. A year later, it was taken up by Sir Henry Wood.


Hubicki is Peggy?s married name, which she kept after her Canadian-born husband of Ukrainian parentage, Bohdan, was killed in a 1940 London air raid. The couple had been married for only three months, and Peggy was herself seriously injured in the attack. She is credited with the invention of the ?Colour Staff,? a method for teaching musical notation to those who suffer from dyslexia and other visual/cognitive impairments, an achievement for which she was awarded an M.B.E. in 1985. She spent 40 years as a harmony professor at the Royal Academy, and was a governor of the Yehudi Menuhin School. She counts John Tavener, James Galway, and Jeremy Menuhin among her former students.


So, what can you expect to hear in this collection of Hubicki?s works? Well, there is not one among them that is anything less than artfully crafted and immediately appealing. Stylistically, however, they all seem to draw upon the lingua franca of an earlier generation of English composers that gave us the likes of York Bowen, Arnold Bax, and Ralph Vaughan Williams, to name just three of many. The majority of the pieces on the disc, written between 1934 and the end of the decade, are already years behind their time. The 1950 From the Isles of the Sea begins with a dreamy flute solo that sets an Impressionistic mood distantly echoing much 1920s music of the French persuasion. Even the latest written work on the program, the 1957 ?Goladon? Suite for Piano Four-hands, has a Russian or Eastern Orthodox chant-like cast to it that is a bit reminiscent of Mussorgsky or Rimsky-Korsakov.


I?m no expert on Irish music, but somehow I fancy the Irish more red-blooded and extroverted than Hubicki?s reserved, over-refined Irish Fantasy ?the banshee in ?The Banshee?s Dance? wouldn?t scare a two-year-old. The three-movement Piano Sonata and the Theme and Variations for string quartet seem to me the best of the lot. All of this music is, as I indicated, pleasant and easy on the ears. Yet, in the end, I cannot help but feel that its soft grain is ultimately symptomatic of a soft core. Beyond its surface prettiness?and it is pretty?substance seems to be in short supply.


I have nothing but praise, however, for the musicians. Pianist James Kirby, who plays in all but one of the pieces, is outstanding, and all of the players make a commendable effort through the alchemy of their art to transform lesser metal into precious gold. This is really a very enjoyable disc; much of it makes for relaxed or otherwise occupied listening. As long as you?re not too hung up on the ?great works? thing, recommended.


FANFARE: Jerry Dubins
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Works on This Recording

1. Lonely Mere by Margaret Hubicki
Performer:  Frederick Stocken (Piano), James Kirby (Piano), Robert Max (Cello)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: England 
2. Rigaudon for Cello and Piano by Margaret Hubicki
Performer:  James Kirby (Piano), Robert Max (Cello), Frederick Stocken (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: England 
3. Theme and Variations for String Quartet by Margaret Hubicki
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bochmann String Quartet
Period: 20th Century 
Written: England 
4. From the Isles of the Sea by Margaret Hubicki
Performer:  James Kirby (Piano), Daniel Pailthorpe (Flute), Frederick Stocken (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: England 
5. Sonata for Piano in C minor by Margaret Hubicki
Performer:  James Kirby (Piano), Frederick Stocken (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: England 
6. Irish Fantasy for Piano by Margaret Hubicki
Performer:  Frederick Stocken (Piano), James Kirby (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: England 
7. Full Fathom Five by Margaret Hubicki
Performer:  Annemarie Sand (Mezzo Soprano), James Kirby (Piano), Frederick Stocken (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: England 
8. Svolgimento by Margaret Hubicki
Performer:  Frederick Stocken (Piano), James Kirby (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: England 
9. Suite for Piano 4 hands "Goladon" by Margaret Hubicki
Performer:  Frederick Stocken (Piano), James Kirby (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: England 

Sound Samples

From the Isles of the Sea
Piano Sonata: I. Allegro risoluto
Piano Sonata: II. Pastorale: Tranquillo, ma non troppo lento
Piano Sonata: III. Allegro moderato
Full Fathom Five
Theme and Variations
Irish Fantasy: No. 1. The Lonely Piper
Irish Fantasy: No. 2. The Banshee's Dance
Irish Fantasy: No. 3. The Sorrow of Etaine
Irish Fantasy: No. 4. Reel
2 Contrasting Pieces: No. 1. Loney Mere
2 Contrasting Pieces: No. 2. Rigaudon
Svolgimento
Goladon Suite: I. Serenade
Goladon Suite: II. Easter Chorale
Goladon Suite: III. Summer's Eve
Goladon Suite: IV. The Spindle Song

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