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Four Characteristic Pieces

composer

 
One of Stanford’s brilliant pupils was William Yeates Hurlstone (born London, 1876; died London 1906). At the age of eighteen he had gained a scholarship at the Royal College of Music, and by the time he left four years later he already enjoyed a considerable reputation. He was then known mainly for his chamber music, though he also wrote for orchestra, chorus, solo piano and voice. His fresh and individual talent had, however, all too little time to reach full maturity, for he was dogged by ill-health and died at the tragically early age of thirty.

The Four Characteristic Pieces also exist in a version for viola and piano, as do the two Brahms Sonatas and the Ferguson pieces; yet there is no doubt that all of them sound better on the clarinet. The slow introduction to the Ballade is not unlike the opening ‘Once upon a time …’ of a story-teller, though the main part of the movement and the whole of the final Scherzo are both in normal sonata form. The Croon Song, as might be expected, is a lullaby; while the Intermezzo is similar in form, but not in content, to the typical Brahmsian Intermezzo in moderate tempo with a brisk middle section.

from notes by Howard Ferguson and Robert Matthew-Walker 1997

Recordings

English Music for Clarinet
CDD220272CDs Dyad (2 for the price of 1)
The Essential Hyperion, Vol. 2
This album is not yet available for downloadHYP202CDs Super-budget price sampler — Deleted

Details

No 1: Ballade
Track 13 on CDD22027 CD1 [5'50] 2CDs Dyad (2 for the price of 1)
No 2: Croon Song
Track 14 on CDD22027 CD1 [3'02] 2CDs Dyad (2 for the price of 1)
No 3: Intermezzo
Track 15 on CDD22027 CD1 [2'29] 2CDs Dyad (2 for the price of 1)
Track 20 on HYP20 CD2 [2'29] 2CDs Super-budget price sampler Deleted
No 4: Scherzo
Track 16 on CDD22027 CD1 [3'21] 2CDs Dyad (2 for the price of 1)

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