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Imogen Holst: String Chamber Music

Simon Hewitt Jones, violin - David Worswick, violin
Tom Hankey, viola - Oliver Coates, cello
Thomas Hewitt Jones, cello - Daniel Swain, piano

NMC D236

D236 Cover
• BBC Music Magazine Award Winner for Best Premiere Recording 2010

• 'A touching and beautifully presented tribute to a significant figure in 20th-century British music' The Guardian

• 'Music that reveals skill and a fertile imagination' Gramophone

•'The recorded sound, full of presence and atmosphere, is state-of-the-art' BBC Music Magazine

One of NMC's commitments to new music is rescuing significant recordings that have been deleted.   This award-winning album of first recordings of Imogen Holst's chamber works (originally released on the Court Lane Music label) is an important addition to the NMC catalogue, and a wonderful tribute to a significant 20th-century British composer.   Stylistically, many of the works share a similar soundworld to early Tippett and Finzi, however during the 1930s Imogen heard Berg's Wozzeck in Vienna, which had a profound impact.   Her Sonata for Violin and Cello, written during this time, explores a darker, more unsettling dissonance.   There is another reason that this release is important to NMC.   It is thanks to Imogen (and Colin Matthews) that NMC Recordings was created, back in 1989, with support from the Holst Foundation.

'Imogen Holst was a visionary.   When together we established the Holst Foundation, not long before her death in 1984, she was clear that she did not want its future role to be to subsidise her fatherís music in the way that most other composer trusts function.   Instead she hoped that it would be able to support the work of living composers; and this is what the Foundation has done for nearly 30 years.   We had talked at length about the possibility of funding recordings, and although it took a while to get NMC off the ground, I have always felt that the label was founded with her blessing, and that she would have approved whole-heartedly of what we have achieved since 1989.'
Colin Matthews Composer/NMC Executive Producer


IMOGEN HOLST (12 April, 1907 - 9 March, 1984)
String Chamber Music

  1. Poco Adagio     [10:00]

  2. Allegro Molto     [02:21]
  3. Poco Lento     [03:52]
  4. Vivace     [03:42]

STRING TRIO N0.1 (1944)
  5. Andante     [04:59]
  6. Presto     [03:15]
  7. Un Poco Lento     [03:11]
  8. Andante     [03:06]

  9. Theme     [01:15]
10. Vivace     [01:38]
11. Poco Adagio     [02:46]
12. Presto     [01:19]
13. Theme da Capo     [00:52]

14. Allegro Ritmico     [06:30]
15. Adagio     [07:09]

16. Presto, Molto Leggiero     [04:49]

17. Prelude     [03:13]
18. Scherzo     [01:55]
19. Theme and Variations     [09:11]

Total Time: 74:51

NMC Recordings are distributed in Australia by
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Telephone (03) 9432 4149 ~ Facsimile (03) 9444 6879