Britten - Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings, Lachrymae, Young Apollo | Linn CKD478

Britten - Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings, Lachrymae, Young Apollo

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Label: Linn

Cat No: CKD478

Format: CD

Number of Discs: 1

Release Date: 22nd April 2016

Contents

Artists

Richard Watkins (horn)
Allan Clayton (tenor)
Mate Szucs (viola)
Lorenzo Soules (piano)
Aldeburgh Strings

Conductor

Markus Daunert

Works

Britten, Benjamin

Lachrymae, op.48 (version for viola and strings)
Prelude and Fugue, op.29
Serenade for tenor, horn and strings, op.31
Young Apollo, op.16

Artists

Richard Watkins (horn)
Allan Clayton (tenor)
Mate Szucs (viola)
Lorenzo Soules (piano)
Aldeburgh Strings

Conductor

Markus Daunert

About

This international ensemble of crack musicians reveals the next generation’s star soloists; led by violinist Markus Däunert (leader of the Mahler Chamber Orchestra), they deliver fresh and energetic performances of some of Britten’s finest music for string ensemble. This recording is the conclusion of projects celebrating Britten’s centenary in 2013, at which Aldeburgh Strings performed the closing concert in Britten’s musical home of Snape Maltings.

The recording opens with Young Apollo, a radiant, expressive, characterful and dramatic work, featuring pianist Lorenzo Soulès. The Lachrymae subtitled ‘reflections on a song of Dowland’ explores the viola’s intensely mellow sonorities; Máté Szücs (Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra) is the soloist.

The Prelude and Fugue finds Britten indulging in the exuberant technical wizardry of his youthful period whilst recalling Bach’s sophisticated contrapuntal textures. To close, one of the great masterpieces of Britten's canon: the Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings. The award-winning tenor Allan Clayton and horn player Richard Watkins are the soloists, the latter reprising his role 30 years after first performing it with Peter Pears.

The Aldeburgh Strings ensemble is a product of the Britten–Pears Young Artist Programme, founded over forty years ago by Benjamin Britten and Peter Pears, in order to provide high-level performance training for the world’s best emerging professional musicians. Tutors are drawn from some of the world’s finest orchestras, such as the Berlin Philharmonic, Leipzig Gewandhaus, Philharmonia and Scottish Chamber Orchestra, and direct the ensemble sections from within, in an inspiring dual role of mentor and performer.

Reviews

“Blow, bugle, blow,” sings Allan Clayton, and it’s not as if horn player Richard Watkins needs any encouragement. The Aldeburgh Strings’ urgently communicative performance of the Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings is the icing on this four-layer Britten cake. Clayton pushes his robust but airy tenor in all the right places, eking out the tension in the texts. Watkins is superb. There is vibrant, punchy playing from three incarnations of Aldeburgh Strings, one of the training ensembles continuing the composer’s work of developing young artists, with everything directed from the violin by Markus Däunert.  Erica Jeal
The Guardian 13 May 2016

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