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British By Arrangement Vol 2 / Gavin Sutherland


Release Date: 06/29/2004 
Label:  White Line   Catalog #: 2155   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Isaac AlbenizFranz LisztPeter HopeErnest Tomlinson,   ... 
Conductor:  Gavin Sutherland
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Ballet Sinfonia
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 17 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

This disc represents British light music—symphonic pops in the US—at its frequent best. The organizing principle, applied in a previous release, is the showcasing of expert British arrangements of tunes borrowed from abroad. In most cases, the tunes are folk or popular. The striking exception is Christopher Phelps’s powerful orchestration of Franz Liszt’s Fantasia and Fugue on B-A-C-H, originally for organ solo. Furthermore, the last and longest (19 minutes) piece on the disc is hardly an arrangement at all, but rather a highly imaginative set of variations on Auld Lang Syne in which over a hundred snippets from folk, popular, and classical music intrude.

All arrangers cheerfully ignore a famous misstatement by Constant
Read more Lambert, to the effect that the only thing one can do after playing a folk tune is play it again louder. Quite the contrary. One can play it quietly. One can set another tune against it in counterpoint. One can use few or many instruments, altering the color. One can change major chords to minor, and minor to major, alter note values, and indeed tamper with it in every conceivable way, until it turns into something quite different. Finally, one can invent some new tunes, fanfares, or codas to set the original tune off handsomely. I list this catalog because it fairly describes the robust practices of these British arrangers/composers.

The Royal Ballet Sinfonia is the resident orchestra of the Birmingham Royal Ballet, a guest orchestra for other ballet companies, a concert orchestra, and, as demonstrated here, a recording orchestra. They play with gusto and polish, responding to their young conductor, Gavin Sutherland, who must relish this type of music. This excellent recording was accomplished in May 2003. With its fine tunes, imaginative arrangements, rousing performances, and generous playing time, the disc earns a very high recommendation.

Robert McColley, FANFARE
Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Hojas de album (6), Op. 165 "España": no 2, Tango by Isaac Albeniz
Conductor:  Gavin Sutherland
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Ballet Sinfonia
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1890; London, England 
Notes: Arranged: Sir Malcolm Arnold 
2.
Fantasia and Fugue for Piano on B-A-C-H, S 529 by Franz Liszt
Conductor:  Gavin Sutherland
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Ballet Sinfonia
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1871; Weimar, Germany 
Notes: Arranged: Christopher Phelps 
3.
Mexican Hat Dance by Peter Hope
Conductor:  Gavin Sutherland
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Ballet Sinfonia
Period: 20th Century 
Written: England 
4.
American Sketches (3) by Peter Hope
Conductor:  Gavin Sutherland
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Ballet Sinfonia
Period: 20th Century 
5.
Majorcan Fantasy by Peter Hope
Conductor:  Gavin Sutherland
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Ballet Sinfonia
Period: 20th Century 
6.
The Lark in the Clear Air by Peter Hope
Conductor:  Gavin Sutherland
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Ballet Sinfonia
Period: 20th Century 
7.
Fantasia on "Auld Lang Syne" by Ernest Tomlinson
Conductor:  Gavin Sutherland
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Ballet Sinfonia
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1976; England 
8.
Airs and Graces by Eric Wetherell
Conductor:  Gavin Sutherland
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Ballet Sinfonia
Period: 20th Century 

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