These works show Dodgson's acute ability to highlight the best aspects of whatever instruments he chose to write for... There is an elegance so appealing about the Sonata for Oboe and Piano that it has you wanting to hear it again immediately... Showing that the oboe is a versatile instrument that can be teamed with most others, Dodgson’s gorgeous Countdown is a suite for oboe and harp—and what perfect partners they make... His Suite in C minor... Bucolic, bluesy, reflective, dreamy and dancing natures are all evident in this infectious fourteen-minute work...
Hats off to all four musicians: James Turnbull for his quite luminescent playing, Libby Burgess for her faithful and sympathetic pianism, Eleanor Turner for a meltingly gorgeous harp, and Robyn Allegra Parton for a superb rendition of the Three Winter Songs.
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."
Pianist Emma Abbate and the Tippett Quartet reunite to perform a concert of quartets and quintets including Stephen Dodgson’s Piano Quintet No. 2 for the Holmes Chapel Music Society. This is a special occasion as this work was originally commissioned by the society. The Tippett Quartet and Abbate went on to record it together in 2017 and now they are bringing it back to its birthplace. Programme Haydn String quartet in B minor op. 33 no. 1 Dodgson Piano Quintet No. 2 (HCMS commission) Puccini Crisantemi Schumann Piano quintet
Pianist Emma Abbate and the Tippett Quartet pair Stephen Dodgson’s Piano Quintet No. 1 with Schumann’s piano quintet in an evening concert for the Whitstable Music Society. Programme Mendelssohn: String quartet in E flat op. 12 Dodgson: Quintet no. 1 in C Schumann: Quintet in E flat op. 44