Hyperion Records

Scherzo in A minor
1909/10; Scherzo in a-Moll für grosses Orchester; written under the pseudonym of Naxos

'Coles: Music from Behind the lines' (CDH55464)
Coles: Music from Behind the lines
Buy by post £4.40 CDH55464  Helios (Hyperion's budget label) Composers of World War I  
Track 3 on CDH55464 [8'14] Helios (Hyperion's budget label) Composers of World War I

Scherzo in A minor
Such was the scale of Coles’s Scherzo in A minor ‘for large orchestra’, that the composer may well have intended it to form part of a symphony. Whatever its purpose was, it was conceived as an ambitious canvas, full of humour and burles­que, an essay clearly designed to show off the composer’s flair for instrumentation. An introduction for brass and wind, with a satirical edge, introduces a fragment of the movement’s main thematic idea, which is later heard complete on the cor anglais and bassoon. A secondary, descending chromatic fragment, played by clarinets and violas, injects a more demonic, mena­cing flavour, and it is between this more mercurial world and one of sardonic comedy that the Scherzo fluctuates during the extended first group. A more lyrical ‘dance’ idea, initiated by the strings, dominates the second group, and it is this material, often infused with Walküre-inspired augmented triads, that occupies much of the development. As tension mounts towards the development’s conclusion, however, it is the first-group material that reasserts itself with a new dynamism and it is this new outpouring of energy and colour, embodied in Coles’s intense re-orchestration, that reaches its apogee in the virtuoso writing of the riotous coda.

from notes by Jeremy Dibble © 2002

Track-specific metadata
Details for CDA67293 track 3
Recording date
13 December 2001
Recording venue
City Halls, Candleriggs, Glasgow, Scotland
Recording producer
Andrew Keener
Recording engineer
John Timperley
Hyperion usage
  1. Coles: Music from Behind the lines (CDA67293)
    Disc 1 Track 3
    Release date: June 2002
    Deletion date: December 2011
    Superseded by CDH55464
  2. Coles: Music from Behind the lines (CDH55464)
    Disc 1 Track 3
    Release date: July 2014
    Helios (Hyperion's budget label) Composers of World War I
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