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CONTINUOUSLY FASCINATING

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'This release should do much to bring Crosse's music
to the wider audience it so richly deserves.'

The music of Gordon Crosse -
with PETER DICKINSON

 

From the mid-1960s through the 1980s the works of Gordon Crosse made prominent headlines in British music. Many of us considered him one of the most significant composers of a talented generation including Birtwistle, Davies, Maw and Bennett -- and still do. He captivated the Aldeburgh Festival in 1964 with Meet my Folks, a work based on poems by Ted Hughes [EMI LP CLP 1893]. The use of both young and adult performers fitted the Britten ethos and the great man was certainly impressed and soon invited Crosse to Aldeburgh again. The partnership with Ted Hughes continued with another work involving young performers, The Demon of Adachigahara (1968); a major song-cycle with piano, The New World (1972), for Meriel Dickinson, which she and I recorded [Dreamscapes Unicorn-Kanchana DKP(CD)9093]; a full-scale opera, The Story of Vasco put on by Sadler's Wells Opera at the Coliseum in 1974; and several smaller pieces.

In 1966 Crosse conquered the Three Choirs Festival with Changes: a Nocturnal Cycle [Argo LP ZRG 656]. This fastidiously chosen anthology of poems was the basis for a 50-minute choral work extending the Britten tradition in a personal way. Apart from its richly imaginative orchestral textures it shows Crosse as a melodist too. Its neglect by our choral societies is simply incomprehensible.

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Copyright © 6 January 2001 Peter Dickinson, Aldeburgh, Suffolk, UK

 

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CD INFORMATION - NMC D058

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