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The first movement is about peace but also exhilaration; the violin part is expressive and there is much interplay between soloist and orchestra. The music returns frequently to a chord derived from the opening phrase, a series of rising thirds; this chord, almost static, brings to mind the ancient and immovable mountains of Wales The second, slow, movement is quiet and nocturnal; you may imagine a town or village where moonlight catches wisps of smoke rising from chimneys and behind their curtains restless people toss and turn.
The third movement is full of life, and would be a moto perpetuo were it not for some more romantic music in the middle. Towards the very end the opening theme from the first movement is recalled, albeit in a far more spirited mode. The concerto is dedicated to Catherine Handley, superb musician, great friend, and lover of all things Welsh.
from notes by Christopher Gunning © 2020
|Gunning: Violin Concerto, Cello Concerto & Birdflight|
Christopher Gunning's ability to conjure atmosphere is second to none. Two of the works here, the Violin Concerto and 'Birdflight', are ostensibly responses to the vitality of the natural world, but both—in common with the Cello Concerto—remain ti ...» More