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Moeran: Cello Concerto, Serenade / Falletta

Moeran / Falletta / Ulster Orchestra
Release Date: 04/30/2013 
Label:  Naxos   Catalog #: 8573034  
Composer:  Ernest John Moeran
Performer:  Rebekah CoffeyGuy Johnston
Conductor:  JoAnn Falletta
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ulster Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 5 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Although his brief life prevented him from being particularly prolific (he died in 1950, aged 55), E.J. Moeran was a fine composer with a distinctive and very attractive voice. It’s odd that his music hasn’t received more acclaim. After all, there are plenty of French and Spanish composers, including Falla, Dukas, and Mompou, who wrote very little and yet get plenty of attention. Moeran certainly was in their league in his best work, and both the Cello Concerto and the Serenade belong in that category.

Composed for his wife, Peers Coetmore, the concerto is suffused with the spirit of Irish folk song, but also contains an edge to the harmony that places it far beyond the droopy musings of the English “cow pat” school. Guy
Read more Johnston’s playing here is as fine as in any version yet recorded; and with tempos marginally fleeter than the competition on Chandos, this version may well become the reference recording for the work. Credit for that certainly goes equally to JoAnn Falletta, who also offers the scintillating neo-classical Serenade in its original version containing eight movements instead of the usual six.

The program concludes with two charming miniatures, Whythorne’s Shadow, and Lonely Waters, the latter with its folk-song motto sung quite prettily at the end by Rebekah Coffey (there’s also a purely orchestral version). Excellent, well-balanced engineering completes this wholly recommendable release.

-- David Hurwitz, ClassicsToday.com
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Works on This Recording

Whythorne's Shadow by Ernest John Moeran
Performer:  Rebekah Coffey (Soprano)
Conductor:  JoAnn Falletta
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ulster Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1931 
Serenade in G major by Ernest John Moeran
Conductor:  JoAnn Falletta
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ulster Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1948; England 
Pieces (2) for Small Orch: Lonely Waters by Ernest John Moeran
Conductor:  JoAnn Falletta
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ulster Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: circa 1932; England 
Concerto for Cello in B minor by Ernest John Moeran
Performer:  Guy Johnston (Cello)
Conductor:  JoAnn Falletta
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ulster Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1945; England 

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 Excellent Recording June 30, 2014 By Henry S. (Springfield, VA) See All My Reviews "An enchanting cello concerto opens this outstanding recording of works by EJ Moeran. Centered around one of the most ravishingly beautiful Adagios you'll ever encounter, the entire work sparkles with subdued, brilliant textures. Cellist Guy Johnson's cello sings its heart out almost non-stop throughout the entire concerto, and the work ends on a note of optimism and good cheer. The excellent Serenade follows, with a procession of mostly dance tunes displaying an English/Irish twist- light music and a real treat. Two short works (one with a soprano vocal) round out a thoroughly captivating recording. The Ulster Orchestra is excellent, as usual, as is Naxos' sound quality. Good stuff, and highly recommended." Report Abuse
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