It is with great pleasure that we share the news of a brand new CD dedicated to the orchestral music of Rob Keeley released on Toccata Classics. The disc features first recordings of four major works.
Variations for Orchestra (2019) in part modelled on Elgar’s Enigma Variations ” It’s easily my most substantial piece in terms of content and forces involved. Once the theme has been presented, there are thirteen variations for contrasting instrumental combinations, then a passacaglia introduced by high pizzicati in the violins, and a brief coda. The textures and scoring are for the main part quite light and chamber-like.
At all times I have aimed at making the theme recognisable in one form or another, impatient as I’ve long been with ‘variations in name only’! The work is dedicated with gratitude to the conductor of this CD, Paul Mann.”
Triple Concerto for oboe trio and strings (2014) was originally conceived as a creative response to Bach, Telemann and Handel baroque suites, concertos and cantatas that featured what are today unusual forces. This recording features James Turnbull, (oboe), Michael Sluman (oboe) and Patrick Flanaghan (cor anglais) with Paul Mann conducting Málaga Philharmonic Orchestra.
Symphony No.2 (1996) is composed for a ‘classical’ Beethoven-sized orchestra with the addition of an important and quite soloistic part for the harp and follows a broadly classical form. On this recording the Málaga Philharmonic Orchestra are conducted by Paul Mann
Flute Concerto (2017) with its relaxed, ‘summery’ quality definitely owes its allegiances to Gallic neo-classicism. In two movements, the first is broadly a sonata form with lyrical Andantino material ‘broken into’ with faster, dance-like music. The following Adagio opens with a graceful 12-note theme (identical with that used by Stravinsky in the ‘Surge, aquilo’ setting from ‘Canticum Sacrum’) subsequently decorated in various ways: a short cadenza leads into a substantial Allegro, alternating with waltz-like material: this wins the day with a concluding flourish.
Among the factors unifying these eclectic stimuli into an individual musical language are a concern for textural clarity and lightness of touch, a fondness for dance and a hint of good humour.
Composers Edition is proud to publish Symphony No.2, Triple Concerto for two oboes, cor anglais and strings and Variations for Orchestra and look forward to publishing Variations for Orchestra once the edition is finalised.
Tags: CD release, James Turnbull, Liepaja Symphony Orchestra, Michael Sluman, orchestral music, Patrick Flanaghan, Paul Mann, Rob Keeley, Sarah Desbruslais, Symphony no. 2, Toccata Classics, Triple Concerto, Variations for Orchestra