Archive for Coming Soon

Contemporary jazz from Panayiotis Demopoulos

The name of Greek (English trained) pianist/composer Panayiotis Demopoulos will be appearing regularly in Divine Art Group news. He is planning new recordings of both solo piano music and chamber works, and meanwhile the spring will see him in a different genre altogether, that of contemporary jazz. His solo improvisational Suite ‘Nina’s Clock’ was recorded in England by ASC and is to appear on the Métier Jazz label – but will be of interest to followers of contemporary ‘classical music’ too. Due in the late spring or summer (dates to be confirmed) on Métier Jazz MJD 72405.

John McLeod’s complete solo piano works

There are few composers whose genius is fully realised in their own era – but one of them must be John McLeod, a Scot with a truly international voice.

A new double CD/digital album will be issued in summer 2018 by Métier, the contemporary-music division of the Divine Art Group, containing McLeod’s complete (to date) music for solo piano. All are live concert performances by fellow Scot Murray McLachlan, whose previous recordings for Divine Art, and earlier for Olympia, have drawn unstinting praise. This will be a major pianistic recording in all senses, to be released as Métier MSV 77207. One piece is performed not by Murray, but by his daughter, 15-year-old Rose McLachlan; a debut for a very promising star of the future!

New Music for a New Oboe, Volume 2

Foremost English oboist (and specialist in advanced techniques) Christopher Redgate is putting the finishing touches to his latest Métier album, “New Music for a New Oboe, vol. 2”. This was originally due to appear in 2014 but Chris suffered a stroke (from which happily he is now totally recovered) and this delayed progress. Now scheduled for release in the first part of 2018, the album will contain new/recent works by Christopher Fox, Dorothy Ker, Paul Archbold, Edward Cowie and Sam Hayden – all first recordings. The album, like its predecessor (vol. 1 – MSV 28529) features the Howarth-Redgate oboe specially developed to cater for the more challenging requirements of the avant-garde, including multiphonics. The oboe was manufactured by Howarth of London.

Four English Poetry and Song Society Recordings

The EPSS has supported the long and vibrant tradition of English art-song for many years.

These EPSS recordings were made on portable recording equipment and with less than ideal microphone placement and are not to our usual modern standard. However, they contain fine performances and many very unfamiliar and exquisite songs, which will delight any lover of late-Romantic vocal music

Shropshire Lads

Settings of the poems of A.E. Housman by E.J. Moeran, Arthur Somervell, Arnold Bax, Benjamin Burrows, Brian Daubney, Margaret Wegener, Clive Pollard, Calvin Bowman and Stephen Duro. Plus the five excellent finalists in the EPSS competition of 2006.

Songs of Dorset

Here we have fine settings of Thomas Hardy and the dialect poems of William Barnes from Gerald Finzi, Ralph Vaughan Williams, Arthur Somervell, Clive Carey, Roger Lord, Alison Edgar, Judith Bailey and Brian Daubney. Works by the five finalists in the EPSS competition of 2001 are also included.

The Great War

Some of the best known and most moving of English poetry came from the horrors of the 1914-8 war. Here texts by Siegried Sassoon, A.E. Housman, Rupert Brooke, F.W. Harvey and more in settings by Ivor Gurney, Geraint Lewis, John Ireland, Geoffrey Kimpton, Margaret Wegener, John R. Williamson, Duncan Reid, Dennis Wickens, Elaine Hugh-Jones and Jerome Kern. Works by the seven finalists in the 2004 EPSS competition are included.

Lights Out

A wide ranging recital of art songs from Henry Purcell, E.J. Moeran, Ivor Gurney, Sulyen Caradon, Samuel Wesley, Jeffrey Whitton, Sarah Rodgers, Alison Edgar and Laura Shur.

New Music from Michael Alec Rose

In early 2018, Metier will release an album of music by Michael Alec Rose for solo violin and violin/viola duo, featuring violinist Peter Sheppard Skærved (pictured) and Diana Mathews (viola). Titled ‘Il Ritorno’, for one of the main pieces, the album will be on MSV 28574.

Rose has received 30 annual awards in composition from ASCAP and has been commissioned by the Walter W. Naumburg Foundation, the Blair and Mendelssohn String Quartets, the Nashville Symphony, and others. His music has been performed widely in the United States, as well as in Europe and South America. He is Associate Professor of Composition at Vanderbilt University’s Blair School of Music in Tennessee.

New From Madeleine Mitchell

Working at top speed on a new album for violinist Madeleine Mitchell of contemporary though lyrical (not avant-garde) works by British composers – includng pieces by David Matthews, Michael Berkeley, Michael Nyman, Sadie Harrison and Judith Weir and the Violin Concerto Soft Stillness by Guto Puw – we are aiming for an October release (DDA 25160) though there are several factors out of our hands which could affect that plan.

New Music From Composer John Buckley

The Metier label has over the past two years released a number of albums featuring some of the leading composers in Ireland and the latest to be ‘signed up’ is a collection of choral works by composer John Buckley, who has established himself as one of the foremost contemporary voices in the Republic. The recording is to be made later this year and should be available in the first part of 2018 (Metier MSV 28576); performances are by the acclaimed Mornington Singers, directed by Orla Flanagan.

Coming in 2018 From Trio Anima Mundi

Following their wonderful disc of Romantic Trios (DDA 25102) Australian ensemble Trio Anima Mundi are now preparing a luscious album of English trios to be released on Divine Art (DDA 25158) next year; this will include the Piano Trios of Samuel Coleridge-Taylor and Henry Waldo Warner, the First Trio of Rosalind Elliott, and the Folk-Song Fantasy by Cliffe Forrester.

New Music from David Braid

Métier will release a fascinating new album (currently scheduled for November) with a new set of works by English composer David Braid whose most recent album on Toccata was highly praised. ‘Songs, solos and duos’ features the velvet tone of the electric archtop guitar in a chamber, solo and vocal setting; also includes Braid’s evocative duos for flute/classical guitar and clarinet/piano – plus his 1st Piano Sonata: an eclectic range of recent works from the one of the UK’s most original yet approachable composers, performed by a dynamic set of world-class players. (MSV 28575)

Three new albums coming to the Russian Piano Music Series

Alfonso Soldano

Alfonso Soldano

Following the critical acclaim given to the recent release of music by Sergei Bortkiewicz by Italian pianist Alfonso Soldano (Volume 12 of the Russian Piano series), we have invited Soldano to make two more discs. While currently busy with his recording of music by Castelnuovo-Tedesco to be released in the late summer, Soldano will record later this year albums of piano works by Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninov.

Another addition to the series will include the debut recording by dynamic and brilliant Italian pianist Stefania Argentieri in a program of works by Prokofiev.

Recording Details

Russian Piano Music vol. 13 (DDA 25155)

Rachmaninoff: Moments Musicaux, Op. 16; Piano Sonata No. 1, Op. 28; Etude-Tableaux, Op. 39 Nos 1 & 5; Prelude, Op. 23 No. 6
Alfonso Soldano

Russian Piano Music vol. 14 (DDA 25156)

Tchaikovsky: Grand Sonata, Op. 37; Six Pieces, Op. 19; Romance in F minor, Op. 5; Berceuse in A flat, Op. 72 No. 2
Alfonso Soldano

Russian Piano Music vol. 15 (DDA 25157)

Prokofiev: Piano Sonata No. 1, Op. 1; Piano Sonata No. 6, Op. 82; Six pieces from ‘Cinderella’, Op. 102; Suggestion Diabolique; Four Etudes, Op. 2
Stefania Argentieri

Explore the current Russian Piano Music Series

Christopher Fox Clarinet Music

A new album for British composer Christopher Fox will be taking shape soon. Our Métier (new-music) label is to release a disc of Fox’s entire output of clarinet music, which handily extends to about 80 minutes. The recording is to take place in London in August, the soloist being Canadian clarinetist Heather Roche, who originally proposed the recording to the composer last year. Fox describes Roche as ‘the most exciting player I’ve heard in a long time’ and everyone at the Métier office is eager to hear the results, as Fox is one of the most experimental and unorthodox composers around, yet makes music which is more approachable then many of the modernists. Fox says that the recording will involve the full family of instruments from the E flat to the contrabass; some tracks will involve electronics and some overdubbing of the instruments.

The release date for this album is likely to be November, or possibly the beginning of 2018 depending on progress in the studio and will be on Métier MSV 28573 (CD and digital).

Symphonic Visions by Ed Hughes

A fascinating new video album will be released by Métier comprising new music for silent films by Ed Hughes. Métier has worked with Hughes before on a chamber/vocal disc (Dark Formations, MSV 28530) as well as an opera disc (When the Flame Dies, MSV 77203), both to critical acclaim. Hughes has written new scores for many classic films and this new collection includes music for ‘A Voyage to the Moon’ (1902) and the surrealist ‘The Nose’ (1963) as well as incidental music to accompany RAF and Imperial War Museum footage from the 1940s. The catalyst for the project was however a commission from the City of Brighton (UK) to produce a 45-minute orchestral score as part of the Brighton Festival’s 50th anniversary in 2016. The score was to accompany a new silent film ‘Brighton: Symphony of a City’ by Lizzie Thynne – a portrait of everyday Brighton but with historic archive clips referencing the past.

This is an eclectic mix of fascinating visual material bound together by the excellent compositional skills of Hughes.

Due for release in February 2018 (Métier MSVDX 203 – DVD format in universal play). The audio version “soundtrack” will also be issued simultaneously as a digital-only album (MSV 50801).

Ghost Dialogues

Among the plethora of chamber music discs featuring strings and woodwind soloists, the brass section seems still to be given relatively less attention except for early and baroque works. A new album from Métier presents a range of new works for trumpet by American composers, performed by Chris Gekker, acclaimed soloist who is also Professor of Trumpet at the University of Maryland. All approachable and melodic works though varied in style and presentation, these are all first recordings and include works by Robert Gibson, Carson Cooman, Lance Hulme, David Heinick and Kevin McKee. Performers alongside Gekker will include Rita Sloan (piano), Chris Vadala (tenor sax), and Clara O’Brien (mezzo-soprano). To be released in July 2017 (Métier MSV 28572).