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Bridge: Orchestral Works Vol 5 - Suite, Etc / Hickox, Et Al


Release Date: 10/19/2004 
Label:  Chandos   Catalog #: 10246   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Frank BridgeJohann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Roderick Williams
Conductor:  Richard Hickox
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC National Orchestra of Wales
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 8 Mins. 

CD not available: This title is currently only available as an MP3 download.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews

This is Volume 5 of Chandos’s indispensable Frank Bridge series. The Suite for Strings is superbly done, Richard Hickox being fully alive to the wide range of moods that make up the four movements. Drawing excellent playing, Hickox catches the rumination and growth of the opening Prelude, the perkiness and expressive asides of the Intermezzo creates a haunting atmosphere for the introspective Nocturne, and the Finale scampers with good humor.

The rest of the CD is of miniatures, each memorable, and including first recordings. Of the latter, the songs include The Hag (Robert Herrick), a wild ride, Bridge’s orchestration full of demonic touches, and a thrilling experience. Of the texts by Robert Bridges, “I praise the tender
Read more flower” is a contemplative, lyrical setting, one with quiet ardor, which contrasts with the more animated and no less amorous setting of “Thou didst delight my eyes.” It’s hard to believe that these three songs have not been sung for nearly a century! Roderick Williams does them proud.

The music from Threads, a comedy by Frank Stayton, was published in scoring for “theatre orchestra”; the yearning first intermezzo contrasts with the skittish second, a delightful waltz. For similar scoring are the two entr’actes. The first, Rosemary, is a tenderly expressive creation that grows in wonderment before returning to nostalgia; the Canzonetta that follows is strangely gawky in places and colorfully scored to match its Mediterranean inspiration.

The remaining pieces are for strings. Two Old English Songs consists of the heartfelt “Sally in Our Alley,” devastatingly beautiful, so imaginatively arranged, and eloquently performed here. Second is the melody of “Cherry Ripe,” merely hinted at for a while as Bridge enjoys decorating the tune’s outline. The Valse-Intermezzo is courtly and refined, and, despite its charm, maybe a little long. Todessehnsucht (also a first recording) is Bridge’s sonorous and deeply felt arrangement of Bach’s “Komm süsser Tod” (BWV 478), while the lively dance, Sir Roger de Coverley, is given with buoyancy and athleticism (if without quite erasing memories of the versions by Boult and Britten, respectively for Lyrita and Decca). Hickox has recorded the full orchestra version of Sir Roger on Volume 3 of Chandos’s admirable series.

What might seem like a CD of Bridge off-cuts is, in fact, a substantial and worthwhile collection.
Colin Anderson, FANFARE Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Valse-Intermezzo for Strings in E minor, H 17 by Frank Bridge
Conductor:  Richard Hickox
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC National Orchestra of Wales
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1902; England 
2.
Suite for String Orchestra, H 93 by Frank Bridge
Conductor:  Richard Hickox
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC National Orchestra of Wales
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1908; England 
3.
Old English Songs (2): no 2, Cherry Ripe, H 119b by Frank Bridge
Conductor:  Richard Hickox
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC National Orchestra of Wales
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1916; England 
4.
Old English Songs (2): no 1, Sally in our alley, H 119a by Frank Bridge
Conductor:  Richard Hickox
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC National Orchestra of Wales
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1916; England 
5.
Sir Roger de Coverley, H 155 by Frank Bridge
Conductor:  Richard Hickox
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC National Orchestra of Wales
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1922; England 
6.
Threads, H 151: Intermezzi (2) by Frank Bridge
Conductor:  Richard Hickox
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC National Orchestra of Wales
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1921; England 
7.
The Hag, H 14 by Frank Bridge
Performer:  Roderick Williams (Baritone)
Conductor:  Richard Hickox
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC National Orchestra of Wales
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1902; England 
Language: English 
8.
Songs (2) of Robert Bridges, H 65 by Frank Bridge
Performer:  Roderick Williams (Baritone)
Conductor:  Richard Hickox
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC National Orchestra of Wales
Period: 20th Century 
Written: England 
Language: English 
Notes: Composition written: England (1905 - 1906). 
9.
Sketches (3) for Piano, H 68: no 2, Rosemary by Frank Bridge
Conductor:  Richard Hickox
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC National Orchestra of Wales
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1906; England 
Notes: Arranger: Frank Bridge. 
10.
Canzonetta for Piano, H 169 by Frank Bridge
Conductor:  Richard Hickox
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC National Orchestra of Wales
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1926; England 
Notes: Arranger: Frank Bridge. 
11.
Komm, süsser Tod, komm, sel'ge Ruh'!, BWV 478 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Conductor:  Richard Hickox
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC National Orchestra of Wales
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1736; Leipzig, Germany 
Notes: Arranger: Frank Bridge. 

Sound Samples

Suite for String Orchestra: I. Prelude: Moderato
Suite for String Orchestra: II. Intermezzo: Allegretto grazioso
Suite for String Orchestra: III. Nocturne: Adagio molto
Suite for String Orchestra: IV. Finale: Allegro vivo
The Hag
2 Songs: No.1. I praise the tender flower
2 Songs: No. 2. Thou didst delight my eyes
2 Intermezzi: No. 1. Andante molto moderato e tranquillo
2 Intermezzi: No. 2. Tempo di valse - Animato
Sally in Our Alley (arr. for string orchestra)
Cherry Ripe (arr. for string orchestra)
2 Entr'actes: No. 1. Rosemary
2 Entr'actes: No. 2. Canzonetta
Valse Intermezzo a cordes
Todessehnsucht
Sir Roger de Coverley, "A Christmas Dance"

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