Andrew Wilson - Let's Come To An Arrangement

Published Wednesday 21st October 2009
Andrew Wilson - Let's Come To An Arrangement
Andrew Wilson - Let's Come To An Arrangement

STYLE: Classical
RATING 6 6 6 6 6 6
LABEL: Regent REGCD325

Reviewed by Steven Whitehead

This pleasant collection takes us back the days before Classic FM and budget CDs when the ordinary listener's best and often only chance of hearing classical music played live would be by attending recitals at the City Hall where organist/arrangers such as Edwin Lemare were local celebrities. The aforementioned Lemare, for example, was enticed away from England to San Francisco for the equivalent of a six-figure salary. On this disc Andrew Wilson plays the Nicholson organ at Great Malvern Priory. This venerable instrument was completely restored in 2004 but retains all but one stops from the previous instrument. Further details are provided by Dr Tony Hughes in the CD booklet. The recital opens with the Overture from 'Die Fledermaus' which is followed by a secular cantata by Bach (Number 29; BWV29), a selection from Tchaikovsky's 'Nutcracker' and then Lemare's arrangement of Verdi's Grand March from 'Aida'. All rousing stuff. Next we turn closer to home with the local composer Edward Elgar's "Chanson de Matin" and "Imperial March." Holst is featured with "Venus" from 'The Planets' - a pleasant change from the more predictable "Mars" or "Jupiter". Then it is back to Walton for his "Anniversary Fanfare and Coronation March 'Orb and Sceptre'" and a sentimental conclusion with Lemare's setting of "Auld Lang Syne". And then, of course, there is an encore: a selection from Saint-Saen's 'Carnival Of The Animals'. The end result is an easy to listen to recital of popular classics played very well on a significant instrument.

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