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Cat. No. CHAN 10205 Price: £0 No. of discs: 1
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CHAN 10205 - Grainger: Vol. 19 - Works For Solo Piano 3
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Available From: 10 May 2004
For Grainger, the key of F sharp major was always associated with dreams, romance and longing, as in the sea shanty One More Day, My John, and the ‘F sharp major mood’ dominates many of the pieces he wrote shortly after he and his mother had moved to New York. Nostalgia pervades A Bridal Lullaby, which he wrote for a former lover upon her marriage.When in 1918 Grainger realised that he might be sent on overseas service, he made a number of informal piano roll recordings, most of which have lain unheard in the Grainger Museum. An extended version of A Bridal Lullaby was discovered. Bridal Lullaby Ramble appears for the first time on this disc.

Grainger was particularly close to his mother, Rose, and her suicide on 30 April 1922 initiated a period of confusion and emotional dislocation for the composer. His Ramble on the Last Love-Duet from Strauss’s ‘Der Rosenkavalier’ was begun well before her death, but only completed (and dedicated to her memory) in 1927 when he was beginning to recover emotionally. The raw pain in Grainger’s setting of the tune of the Danish folksong The Power of Love, collected in 1922, following his mother’s death, is palpable.

Grainger’s marriage to Ella Viola Ström in 1928 took place in the interval of a concert in the Hollywood Bowl before an audience of at least 15,000. Grainger then conducted his orchestral tribute to her: To a Nordic Princess. Arranged also in a version for solo piano, it is one of Grainger’s most deeply happy works.

Grainger’s last years were cheered by music he had always loved – including that of the great English lutenist John Dowland. The full force of his response to Now, Oh Now I Needs Must Part comes across in his settings.

Thwaites imbues the music with an aptly intimate poetry. Crucially, she knows how to sing a tune, as the abundance of attractive melodies, garlanded with Grainger’s rich pianistic dressing, gives her ample opportunity to demonstrate.
BBC Music Magazine

The major news in the 19th volumes of Chandos’s Grainger Edition is the first recording of the ‘Bridal Lullaby Ramble’' It’s a magnificent discovery, filled with over-ripe harmonies and elaborate ornamentation… this lushly recorded disc can be warmly recommended.

The advantage of this Chandos disc is that you can buy the other piano discs for a full complementary set. I certainly found it very enjoyable and fascinating to compare some of the different versions of the pieces. And I defy anyone not to be seduced by Grainger’s ‘ramble’ on Strauss’s final love duet from ‘Der Rosenkavalier’.
Music Web

There is as much to savour musically as there is in Ms Thwaites’s sympathetic and thoughtful playing of her compatriot’s works.

Highly persuasive advocacy…
Classic FM

Miss Thwaites seems to have Grainger in her blood. This collection is absolutely superb for her playing and sensitive voicing… I can not imagine a more beautiful piano sound. This is one CD all Delians and Graingerites should have, even if you have a dozen other Grainger piano CDs.
The Delian


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