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New prizewinning music


Artisjus   BR 0156

Record Box


I have known Patric Standford since his early days as a composer - and readers are getting to know him through occasional record reviews for M&V.

"In Memorian Zoltán Kodály" - Winners of the First International Composers' CompetitionIt is very pleasing for me to find his imaginative qualities again set out, this time in a masque in five scenes for chorus and orchestra. It took first prize in the First International Composers' Competition set up by the Kodaly Institute in memory of Kodaly's death. This work now shares a CD with the second and third prizewinners - Peter Knell and The Sun's Blinking Eye and Róbert Gulya with a Piano Concerto.

Standford's The Prayer of Saint Francis Interrupted by the Birds firstly displays its quality through a richly embroidered canvas of orchestral colour upon which is superimposed the chorus with a broader style of writing. That these two aspects of the work blend without problems illustrates the hand of an experienced as well as skilful composer. In some ways this piece required a musical illustrator to delineate the saint's prayer to the elements [listen - track 6, 00:00-01:00], the arrival of the birds [listen - track 7, 01:00-01:43] and the final homage to God [listen - track 8, 00:00-01:00]. Yet all is accomplished with musical penetration of the events caught up and blended to a fine mix. A most satisfying work from a composer who is far too hidden from view.

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Copyright © 23 February 2000 Basil Ramsey, Eastwood, Essex, UK




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Record Box is Music & Vision's regular Wednesday series of shorter CD reviews