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British Violin Sonatas (Volume One)

Howard Ferguson | Sonata No. 2, Op 10
Sir William Walton | Violin Sonata
Benjamin Britten | Suite, Op 6

Tasmin Little & Piers Lane

Chandos 10770

Tasmin Little continues to champion seldom-performed repertoire, which is a core interest of Musical Pointers. These are excellent choices for her new survey of British violin sonatas, with pianist Piers Lane.

Howard Ferguson produced a mere twenty works, latterly in the '50s, before he abandoned composition for other musical activities, but they are meticulously wrought with intensely economical motivic workings. It is a compelling sonata which deserves hearing and playing by a new generation of violinists.

Britten's precosity is well exemplified by his op 6, a suite of characteristic pieces which will always win a welcome in concert and should be in the repertoire of the new generation. Walton (famous for his early Facade) resented the younger composer's success and Mervyn Cooke's notes here recall that Walton scotched an early plan to record Peter Grimes and, accompanied by Yehudi Menuhin to a music shop he turned a promotional publicity photo of Britten upside down...

Walton's own Sonata (1949) is a rich and characteristic work which ought not to have been dropped from the repertoire. This is an altogether admirable disc which makes one eager to heear further releases in the projected series.

Peter Grahame Woolf