The Lark Ascending( Tasmin Little, BBC Philharmonic, Andrew Davis)] [Chandos: CHAN 10796]
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In this release, playing works by Vaughan Williams, Moeran, Delius, and Holst, Tasmin Little once again demonstrates her unique affinity with some of the best loved British composers of the twentieth century. She is joined by Sir Andrew Davis and the BBC Philharmonic. Little's previous recordings of British music on Chandos have been acclaimed, Gramophone writing of her performance of Elgar's Violin Concerto: 'For sheer beauty of tone and expressive nostalgia, Tasmin Little and Sir Andrew Davis out-Elgar their rivals.' E.J. Moeran composed his Violin Concerto during visits to Ireland, and it strongly reflects his love of the landscape in County Kerry. The Lark Ascending, Ralph Vaughan Williams's much-loved romance for violin and orchestra, has long been considered a pièce de resistance for Tasmin Little, one that she is often called on to perform in concert. This disc also features three works by Elgar, all heard in arrangements by Roger Turner: Chanson de matin of 1899, its companion piece, Chanson de nuit, which features a dark-coloured main melody appropriate to its title, and Salut d'amour, one of the early works that made the composer's name.
It's over twenty years since Tasmin Little first recorded Vaughan Williams's surpassingly lovely The Lark Ascending for Warner Classics (also with Andrew Davis, but with the BBC Symphony Orchestra) and if anything she sounds even more inside this magical score than before, developing upon the delicate tracery of the 1990s with a radiant warmth and singing glow that captures the music's pastoral mood to perfection. At times it sounds as though everyone is merely breathing on their instruments, creating a poetically spellbound sensation of the lark soaring aloft on warm air currents. The effect is enhanced by engineering that captures uncannily the soloist s avian musings, floating gently over the orchestra. Little's special sense of identity with English music is confirmed by a performance of E. J. Moeran's Violin Concerto that surpasses even the Albert Sammons classic of the mid-1940s (Moeran described Sammons at the time as the only one to play it. ). This is not merely a question of vastly superior recording quality but of Little s special ability to dream and fantasize with the music as though she is composing it as she goes along. As a result Moeran's rhapsodic tendency loses its episodic structural profile and sounds instead likes an inspired stream of musical consciousness. The first movement's early solo cadenza can, for example, feel dramatically premature, yet Little glides effortlessly into, through and out of it as though it was the most natural thing in the world. The remainder of this exceptional disc usefully programmes Delius's haunting early Légende in an ecstatic performance to place beside Little's classic accounts of the Violin Concerto (Chandos) and violin sonatas (Conifer/Sony) and Holst's A Song of the Night, the rarely-heard original version of the Invocation for cello and orchestra. Three favourite Elgar miniatures Chanson de matin, Chanson de nuit and Salut d'amour in sensitive new arrangements by Roger Turner, round out one of Little's finest albums. ***** --Sinfini Music, 15/11/13
Tasmin Little gives us a feast of works for violin and orchestra , wonderfully supported by Andrew Davis and the BBC Philharmonic. A sumpteous offering all round ! GRAMOPHONE CHOICE --Gramophone, Jan'14
Tasmin Little's stellar playing- brimming with gorgeous and glitz-free tone, plus a lovely range of light and shade . Performance ***** Recording ***** BBC MUSIC ORCHESTRAL CHOICE --BBC Music Magazine, Feb' 14
Top Customer Reviews
This recording, one of many I have sampled over the years, stands apart from those considered to be the very best.
The production is flawless and faultless - all credit to Chandos for such an amazing production.
The production would have been meaningless, of course, if it weren't for the stunning performance of Tasmin Little.
A performance that is, in my view, one of the most perfect interpretations on Vaughan-Williams much loved romance
for violin and orchestra.
If you must download, find a site to download FLAC.