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Track(s) taken from CDA67444

Fishing by Moonlight, Op 96a

1952 arrangement of 1949 Nightpiece for two harpsichords or pianos

Guildhall Strings, Julian Milford (piano), Robert Salter (conductor)
Studio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available
Studio Master:
Studio Master:
Recording details: May 2003
Big School, Christ's Hospital, Horsham, West Sussex, United Kingdom
Produced by Andrew Keener
Engineered by Simon Eadon
Release date: July 2004
Total duration: 6 minutes 33 seconds


'This is music for an English summer evening, with a glass of wine to hand—rewarding in its unpretentious, melodious, nicely crafted way; especially when played with sympathy and elegance by Robert Salter and the excellent Guildhall Strings and so naturally balanced and recorded by Andrew Keener. Don't miss it' (Gramophone)

'The performances by Guildhall Strings are energetic and precise. Though a relatively small ensemble of 11 strings, they possess a Protean ability to convey a much plusher sound as required … Dare we hope this CD will mark the beginning of a break for Milford? He's long overdue one' (Fanfare, USA)
Possibly Milford’s best-known orchestral work, Fishing by Moonlight for piano and strings had first appeared in 1949 as a piece for two harpsichords (or pianos) entitled Nightpiece. Its orchestral version dates from 1952, and was published in 1958. It was suggested to the composer by the Dutch artist Aernout van der Neer’s (1603–1677) nocturnal picture of the same title showing fishing boats in a river estuary, nets drying in the foreground, a village church tower rising across the water. A simple ternary shape frames a limpid singing middle section with dotted 6/8 siciliano-like outer sections, notable for the constant chromatic changes which give the music its shadowy fluid character, the piano answering the strings and eventually joining together in a passionate tutti. The piece was first performed by the Newbury String Players conducted by Gerald Finzi at the Newbury Festival in April 1956.

from notes by Lewis Foreman © 2004

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