Vaughan Williams: Complete Works for Violin and Piano
Starting from Vaughan William's' early pieces 'Romance and Pastorale', the album takes us through the composer's complete musical development: from the '6 Studies in English Folk Song', to the 'The Lark Ascending' in its original version for violin and piano. The original and lesser known version (compared to the orchestral version) gives an even more intimate account of the ethereal world against the backdrop of the First World War, and deeply resonates the composer's hope for the preservation of peace in nature. In contrast, the rarely performed Sonata, written towards the end of his life, depicts emotional turmoil that cuts deep into the composer's thoughts. The turbulence that prevails throughout the work is finally brought to a sense of healing, with a recollection of 'The Lark Ascending' in the end. Along with these intricate connections between each piece, this album takes us on an all-embracing journey through the composer's stylistic development.
Accompanying their performance is a CD booklet including photos specially taken with the artists for this album at Leith Hill Place, Vaughan Williams's childhood home (National Trust). Additionally, based on extensive research in the manuscript archives, Midori Komachi's liner notes in this booklet offer a unique perspective and a deeper understanding of these works.
Along with the album, the first track 'Romance', a piece with particular connections to Leith Hill Place, has inspired a music video filmed at the location.
Midori Komachi, violin
'Sensitive accounts of music full of sensual allure' -The Strad
'a particularly imaginative approacha recital in which this violinist more than holds her own' - International Record Review
'hugely-gifted soloist of the younger generation' - The Quarterly Review
International violinist, writer and composer, Midori Komachi has developed a diverse career in bridging cultures through music. Based between London and Tokyo, recent projects have included collaborations with major brands such as British Airways, LUSH, OPPO, All Nippon Airways and Backes & Strauss.
Midori has performed as a soloist extensively throughout Europe and Japan. She made her debut as a soloist at the age of 12 with the Zurich Chamber Orchestra, conducted by Howard Griffiths. Since then, she has appeared in some of the world's most prestigious venues, including Tonhalle Zurich, Tokyo Opera City Hall, Philharmony Warsaw, Wigmore Hall, and the Rector's Palace (Croatia). In 2021 Midori was appointed a Musician in Residence at the British Council and PRS Foundation, where she has led a digital residency with the UNESCO historical town of Diamantina, Brazil.
With a particular interest in promoting British music internationally, Midori has appeared frequently on various media, including BBC Radio 3 and NHK TV. Midori has also appeared as a presenter for her own British music series Midori Selects on British Airways in-flight entertainment. In 2017, her first book, a Japanese translation of Eric Fenby's classic recollection 'Delius as I Knew Him' (1936) was published in Japan. In 2022, her second book will be published, in which she has co-translated Simon Heffer's Vaughan Williams to Japanese with Professor Nobuya Takahashi (Keio University).
Midori's discography has gained critical acclaim in both the UK and Japan. Her first album 'Colours of the Heart' (MusiKaleido) received enthusiastic reviews from publications including The Strad and the International Record Review. Currently, Midori is a PhD candidate at Goldsmiths, University of London, where her research is fully funded by the Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC). She is also an Adjunct Lecturer at Queen's University (Canada), and is based at the UK campus, the Bader International Study Centre.
Simon Callaghan, piano
"Clearly a musician of curiosity and discernment, Callaghan's robust piano-playing is also thoughtful, subtle and refined." Gramophone
A favourite artist at the internationally-renowned Husum Festival of Piano Rarities in Germany, Steinway Artist Simon Callaghan's recent sell-out recital drew praise from audience and critics, with the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung describing his "cleverly curated recital full of discoveries" (VAN Magazine) as "technically brilliant".
Callaghan's current repertoire includes over fifty concertos, highlights of the standard solo and chamber works of the 19th and 20th centuries, and much that is rare and unexplored. One cornerstone of Callaghan's work is his commitment to British music, and he has recently begun a projected series with Lyrita, presenting world premiere recordings of British concertos with Martyn Brabbins and the BBC National Orchestra of Wales. By the end of 2023 he will have recorded four albums for Hyperion's celebrated The Romantic Piano Concerto series. Callaghan's first disc for Hyperion, with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, formed part of his successful PhD project at the Royal Northern College of Music.
Callaghan has also recorded for Somm, Resonus and Convivium, and has expanded his role to encompass performing and producing in an exciting association with Nimbus Records and The Lyrita Recorded Edition Trust. His reputation and experience in chamber music led to his accepting the role of Director of Music at London's celebrated Conway Hall, curating the longest-running series of its kind in Europe.
- Vaughan Williams: Romance and Pastorale - I. Romance
- Vaughan Williams: Romance and Pastorale - II. Pastorale
- Vaughan Williams: The Lark Ascending (version for violin and piano)
- Vaughan Williams: Sonata for Violin and Piano in A minor - I. Fantasia
- Vaughan Williams: Sonata for Violin and Piano in A minor - II. Scherzo
- Vaughan Williams: Sonata for Violin and Piano in A minor - III. Tema con Variazioni
- Vaughan Williams: 6 Studies in English Folk Song (version for violin and piano) - No.1. Adagio (Lovely on the Water)
- Vaughan Williams: 6 Studies in English Folk Song (version for violin and piano) - No.2. Andante sostenuto (Spurn Point)
- Vaughan Williams: 6 Studies in English Folk Song (version for violin and piano) - No.3. Larghetto (Van DiemanÕs Land)
- Vaughan Williams: 6 Studies in English Folk Song (version for violin and piano) - No.4. Lento (She Borrowed Some of Her MotherÕs Gold)
- Vaughan Williams: 6 Studies in English Folk Song (version for violin and piano) - No.5. Andante Tranquillo (The Lady and the Dragoon)
- Vaughan Williams: 6 Studies in English Folk Song (version for violin and piano) - No.6. Allegro vivace (As I Walked Over London Bridge)
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