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Hyperion Records

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Track(s) taken from CDD22052
Recording details: June 1996
St Lawrence, Whitchurch, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Andrew Keener & Oliver Rivers
Engineered by Tony Faulkner
Release date: November 1997
Total duration: 13 minutes 55 seconds

'Highly recommended, not least for a glorious rendition of the Harp Concerto and the novelty of the briefest contribution of Clare College Choir in an Alleluia finale' (BBC Music Magazine)

'The abiding impression is one of irrepressible tunefulness and joie de vivre … the instrument's special delight is the sweetness and delicacy of its flute stops … here and elsewhere Nicholson plays with zest and virtuoso flair. The Brandenburg Consort match him in style and élan, while Frances Kelly is a graceful soloist' (The Daily Telegraph)

'The great coup of this new recording … is to have secured the instrument on which the composer played. Nicholson's playing is unfailingly stylish' (The Times)

'Superbly played' (Organists' Review)

'Paul Nicholson's performances are musical, polished and wonderfully played and enjoyable to hear' (Cathedral Music)

'Incandescent music-making. Mr Nicholson, the fieriest of virtuosos, makes us remember that Handel, who wrote these pieces for himself, was an organist of legendary prowess. The Brandenburg Consort's luminous strings play with particular point and charm, thanks to Mr Goodman' (The Dallas Morning News)

Organ Concerto in D minor, Op 7 No 4
composer

Adagio  [5'00]
Allegro  [3'42]

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
Op 7 No 4 in D minor was probably assembled by Smith after Handel’s death. The first movement was composed in 1738 as a Concerto (Adagio) for two organs and orchestra. (Both here and in the last movement of Op 7 No 5 it seemed appropriate for us to supplement the bass line with a Baroque contra-bassoon, using as a precedent Handel’s instruction for ‘Basson Grosso’ with organ in L’Allegro.) The second movement, marked with the unusual tempo indication Allegro così così (similar in intent to the more familiar Allegro non troppo), dates from between 1744 and 1746. A third movement (the Prelude from the D minor Harpsichord Suite) is included on this recording, while the fourth was a great favourite of Handel and may pre-date his move to England. He re-used this material several times; in a Concerto for violin and orchestra of 1712 and as the Presto in a Harpsichord Suite of 1720.

from notes by Marc Rochester © 1997

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