As a reflective tribute to the late Queen Elizabeth II, Head of Music Performance, Dan Harding, plays the gently meditative Farewell to Stromness, written by a former Master of the Queen’s Music, Sir Peter Maxwell Davies.
The piece was written by Sir Peter Maxwell Davies CH CBE (1934 – 2016), who from 2004 to 2014 was Master of the Queen’s Music, a position previously held by composers including Sir Edward Elgar and Arnold Bax, and most recently by Dame Judith Weir. The piece was premiered in 1980, and rose to particular popularity after being performed at the marriage of the then Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall in 2005 in an arrangement for strings.
The village of Stromness lies on the largest of the Orkney Islands, off the coast of Scotland, where the composer lived and worked.The piece was also performed at the service of thanksgiving for the life of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on 12 September, 2022 at St Giles’ Cathedral, Edinburgh.
Filmed in the Colyer-Fergusson Building on the University of Kent’s Canterbury campus.
Musical nostalgia from Brazil in today’s #MinervanMiniatures piece rediscovering forgotten piano repertoire written by women composers.
Today, it’s ‘Souvenirs du Passé‘ by Emilia P Dormund, published around 1904; the piece appeared in O Malho, a satirical weekly publication in Rio de Janeiro between 1902 and 1954; until 1926, the magazine regularly published a piano composition as part of its content.
Enjoy this lyrical, slightly melancholic waltz, a musical memory of the past…
Listen to more in the series’ playlist here.
It’s time to don your dancing-shoes for today’s episode of Minervan Miniatures, our series dedicated to exploring forgotten piano repertoire by women composers: ‘Odilia’ (tango) from ‘Mis pequeños amigos’ by Maria Lluisa Ponsa (1879-1919), published around 1918.
Watch the unfolding series in the Playlist here.
The series exploring forgotten piano repertoire by women composers, #MinervanMiniatures, unearths this finely-wrought gem by Otillie Heinke (1823-1888), the Sonatine in F major, published around 1876. Enjoy the almost Valkyrie-in-miniature passage in the development, as a gently heroic theme in thirds echoes between the left- and right-hand.
See the developing playlist here.
Today marks the 150th anniversary of the birth of the American composer, concert-pianist and educator, Amy Beach. She achieved widespread recognition not only for her compositions but also for her career as a concert-pianist, performing in both America and Europe. Known as the ‘Dean of American Composers’ after the premiere of her Gaelic Symphony in 1896, she became a major figure representing women working in the arts at a time when – as still – it was dominated by men, and establishing an identity for herself was a struggle. On concert-stages throughout Europe, she flourished as a performer of both her own works as well as the usual bastions of piano repertoire. Her legacy includes a wealth of choral and orchestral music, songs, a piano concerto (written to demonstrate her own capabilities) and chamber music.
To celebrate her anniversary, here are two pieces from her delightful Children’s Album, Op.36 – a collection which displays her lyrical creativity, a boisterous sense of fun matched with a highly expressive harmonic ear, and also, in the ‘Waltz,’ a wonderful melodic sense tinged ever so slightly with a hint of melancholy. Both pieces are played in the concert-hall by Your Loyal Correspondent.
Amy Beach: Waltz
Amy Beach: March
And here is the charming Columbine from her Op.25 set, Children’s Carnival.