A reflection on a special concert: On Friday 23rd March, a throng of lunchtime concert-goers were treated to a delightful gem of a recital – the celebration of Jane Clark Dodgson’s 90th birthday at St Mary’s, Barnes and part of the sixth Barnes Music Festival.
I was very glad to have this disc of rarities by the late Stephen Dodgson. Turner’s harp playing is as ever rhythmical, compelling and totally committed. Turnbull’s faultless intonation and pure sound are also lovely to hear in this work which I hope will be more often performed.
All four performers on the disc are excellent musicians and their playing/singing demonstrates assured technical ability, faultless ensemble, a real understanding and appreciation of Stephen Dodgson’s compositions, together with the means of conveying to the listener his wit and humour, rhythmic tension as well as the constant changes of mood. This is musicianship of a high order.
What always stands out when listening to Stephen Dodgson’s music is the way he writes for each instrument, exploring its sound possibilities, in a unique way. His music is easy to follow but it is never predictable... The Mela Guitar Quartet are sensitive players, who listen to each other carefully and produce a very unified sound, which is also very expressive. Their high level of musicianship makes you forget that you are listening to simply four guitars and carries you into a different sound world."
The Marian Consort director, Rory McCleery shares with us the story behind group, the process of commissioning new premieres and the discovery of little-known gems such as Stephen Dodgson's Dormi Jesu which feature on their new recording 'Music for the Queen of Heaven'.
On 3rd November, an audience gathered full of anticipation at St James's church, Piccadilly, for the launch concert of the latest recording of Stephen Dodgson works: a complete recording of his guitar chamber works performed by the Mēla Guitar Quartet and friends.
"The performances by the Tippett Quartet and the nimble-fingered Emma Abbate in the Piano Quintets and Susan Monks as the additional cellist in the String Quintet are a model of chamber ensemble playing. Their understanding is palpable and the ensemble flawless, the effect one of total refinement—just like Dodgson’s music. The sound is superb, the recordings having been made in the church of St Silas the Martyr in Kentish Town. A truly wonderful disc and another winner from Toccata Classics."
"I was introduced to the music of Stephen Dodgson through the wonderful series of discs that present his string quartets that appeared on Dutton. Since then I have explored a little deeper into his output and enjoyed everything that I have heard. This present disc gives examples of his chamber music that includes guitar and various instruments - he was known for composing for strange combinations of instruments as some of the works on this disc clearly demonstrate."
Conductor, keyboard player and director of Sounds Baroque Julian Perkins shares with us his experience of giving a performance, including several works by Stephen Dodgson, at a particularly unusual venue at the Swaledale Festival.
Pianist Emma Abbate and the Tippett Quartet unite for a performance of piano quintets, hosted by the Stratford-upon-Avon Music Society, including Stephen Dodgson’s Piano Quintet No. 1 which they recently recorded on the Toccata Classics label and a voted a MusicWeb recording of the year. Programme Haydn: String quartet op. 33 no. 1 Dodgson: Piano quintet no. 1 in C Puccini: “Crisantemi” for String quartet Schumann: Piano quintet in E flat major Quintets CD reviews MusicWeb review British Music Society review Klassisk Musikk review Musical Opinion review You can also listen to/buy the recording at Toccata Classics.
The Putney Music society presents A Life of Lucky Chances, an evening in conversation with Stephen Dodgson’s widow, Jane Clark Dodgson. Jane is herself an accomplished harpsichordist and authority on the music of François Couperin and Scarlatti. Her lively personality has ensured friendships down the decades with a Who’s Who of composers, BBC music producers, fellow-performers, composers and other important figures in the music world. She talks to Peter Avis about this rich sphere of musicians, musical memories and influences, and will also play a number of Stephen Dodgson tracks and discuss his approach to composition and life. Putney Music meetings are £8 or year-long membership[...]
Pianist Emma Abbate and the Tippett Quartet unite for a performance of piano quintets, hosted by the Canterbury Music Club, including Stephen Dodgson’s Piano Quintet No. 1 which they recently recorded on the Toccata Classics label and a voted a MusicWeb recording of the year. Programme Haydn: String quartet op. 33 no. 1 Dodgson: Piano quintet no. 1 in C Puccini: “Crisantemi” for String quartet Schumann: Piano quintet in E flat major Quintets CD reviews MusicWeb review British Music Society review Klassisk Musikk review Musical Opinion review You can also listen to/buy the recording at Toccata Classics.
Cellist Evva Mizerska and pianist Emma Abbate perform a lunchtime recital of Stephen Dodgson’s Two Romantic Pieces for Cello & Piano, Set A at St George’s Bristol alongside works by Schumann, Janáček and Debussy. The Two Romantic Pieces also feature on a disc of Stephen Dodgson’s complete cello and piano music which the duo recently recorded. Reviews British Music Society Fanfare Planet Hugill
Cellist Leo Popplewell performs a lunchtime recital featuring Stephen Dodgson’s Partita for Cello alongside works by Benjamin Britten and Elliot Carter as part of the 2019 Barnes Music Festival. St. Mary’s Church, Church Road SW13 9HL. Tickets: http://www.barnesmusicfestival.com/tickets. For the full festival programme, please visit http://www.barnesmusicfestival.com/programme-2019.
The Magnard Ensemble will perform Stephen Dodgson’s Suite for Wind Quintet along with works by Ibert, Bach, Barber and more in Alnwick as part of the Alnwick Music Society series. Programme Ibert – Trois pièces brèves Dodgson – Suite for Wind Quintet Bach arr. Shiner – Prelude & Fugue in C# minor BWV 849 Arnold – Three Shanties Barber – Summer Music Woolrich – Book of Studies Set 1 Amy Beach – Pastorale Patterson – Westerly Winds
Karolos, in their trio format of Harriet Mackenzie, Sarah-Jane Bradley and Graham Walker, perform Stephen Dodgson’s 1st trio alongside Mozart Divertimento in E Flat K563. Programme Dodgson –Trio No. 1 Mozart – Divertimento in E Flat K563 Performers Harriet Mackenzie (violin) Sarah-Jane Bradley (viola) Graham Walker (cello)
Oboist James Turnbull and harpist Eleanor Turner perform Stephen Dodgson’s Countdown at the Swaledale Festival in a concert which also includes works by Bach, Ravel, Fauré, Donizetti and Vaughan Williams. St Mary’s Church, Arkengarthdale, Richmond, DL11 6EW The full Swaledale Festival programme will be available at: https://swalefest.org/Whats-On/Programme. CD reviews Countdown was also recently recorded by James and Eleanor on a complete CD of Stephen Dodgson oboe works. British Music Society (1) British Music Society (2) Klassisk Musikk MusicWeb International Double Reed News Review of Countdown – UK Harp Magazine Sample or buy the recording Stephen Dodgson’s ‘Music for Oboe’ recording is available[...]
A concert performance of Stephen Dodgson’s chamber opera Margaret Catchpole: Two Worlds Apart – a tale of misguided loyalty, passion and fate. Dodgson’s 1979 chamber opera tells the story of Suffolk heroine, criminal and chronicler Margaret Catchpole. The opera immerses us in the internal battle between her own good character and values, and her heartfelt loyalty to Will Laud, a smuggler – the man she loves. Libretto by Ronald Fletcher based on the novel by Richard Cobbold. A pre-performance talk by Anthony Cobbold will be given at 6pm. Venue: The performance is at the Britten Studio at Snape Maltings in Suffolk. Cast: Kate Howden, Matthew[...]