Sir Granville Bantock - Overture to a Greek Tragedy • Josef Holbrooke - The Birds of Rhiannon • Cyril Rootham - Symphony No. 1

Philharmonia Orchestra Orchestra
Nicholas Braithwaite, conductor
London Philharmonic Orchestra
Vernon Handley, conductor

Label: Lyrita
Copyright: 2007 Lyrita Recorded Edition, England
Catalogue number: SRCD.269
UPC/EAN: 5020926026927
Format: CD
Analogue / Digital recording: ADD
Number of discs: 1
Total playing time: 62.30
Price: 14.99 (+ postage & packing)

Track 1: Recorded at Kingsway Hall, 22 January 1979, Producer: Andrew Cornall, Engineer: Kenneth Wilkinson
Tracks 2 - 6: Recorded at Henry Wood Hall, 20, 21 September 1976, Producer: James Walker, Engineers: David F, Malcolm Hogg


Both Cyril Bradley Rootham and Josef Holbrooke worked under handicaps, one of which they shared. Why is most of their music unfamiliar to listeners who did not hear it before the war? The answer incurs knowledge of a historical phenomenon.VaughanWilliams was born in 1872, only six years after Strauss and Sibelius, and eight after Debussy. Within ten years all the following were born: Holst, Ravel, Ireland, Bax, Bartok, Stravinsky, and the two composers who now concern us.As in the sixteenth century a whole range of musical peaks and foothills rose almost within a decade. To change the metaphor, it must be stimulating for composers to find themselves within a galaxy, but fromsome of themmust perforce be witheld the wider recognition theymight have earned if they had shone alone, not among brilliantly distinctive stars.

"Lyrita have faced some awkward decisions in the migration of their analogue catalogue to CD. So far they have surmounted them in triumph. Commentators will naturally look for coherent couplings chasing common themes to meld aggregations of tapes. There is a satisfaction in pursuing that grail but there is pleasure to be had from variety too. Lyrita in this disc manage kinship in the Bantock and Holbrooke and diversity when it comes to the Rootham ... All in all a fine release which makes a signal virtue of variety ..." Rob Barnett, www.musicweb-international.com Click here to read the full review

"This CD is great value for money. These are three works that ought to be in the public domain - two fine tone poems and a great Symphony. As usual with Lyrita the sound quality is superb, the playing totally inspiring, the programme notes are helpful and the repertoire is totally challenging and perhaps even essential ..." John France, www.musicweb-international.com Click here to read the full review

"The disc is one I highly recommend. The versions of the Bantock and Holbrooke are excellent and it was fascinating to hear the Rootham, of which the London Philharmonic Orchestra and Handley give a top-rate performance ..." Em Marshall, www.musicweb-international.com Click here to read the full review


1 Overture to a Greek Tragedy: Oedipus at Colonus (1911) Sir Granville Bantock (1868 - 1946) 15.40
2 The Birds of Rhiannon Op. 87 Josef Holbrooke (1878 - 1958) 15.50
Symphony No. 1 in C minor (1932) Cyril Rootham (1875 - 1938) 30.57
3 1. Adagio Allegro ritmico 7.45
4 2. Adagio molto (alla marcia) 8.40
5 3. Scherzo Allegro molto 7.08
6 4. Allegro con spirito 7.24