Marius Dawn
February 2017

Like it or not, the world of composers is dominated by men. So it's refreshing to see that the seventieth in Hyperion's long-running series presents a trio of female composers. Their previous neglect, however, proves understandable in this case. Dorothy Howell's Concerto has a certain post-Straussian vigour, but otherwise contains little to hold the attention. The Concertstück of Cécile Chaminade amounts to 15 minutes of cat-and-mouse chasing. Amy Beach wrote a large-scale, 35-minutes concerto with some substance and a few original ideas, not least in a weighty first movement. Those keen listeners who have collected the previous 69 volumes will not hesitate to acquire the latest one, but its high points centre on Danny Driver and the BBC Scottish SO, who give scintillating performances, perhaps better than the music deserves.