Finzi 'A Centenary Collection'
The year 2001 marked the centenary of the birth of Gerald Finzi (1901 - 1956) and this generously filled disc collects together distinguished performances from the Nimbus catalogue of some of his most popular and enduring orchestral music.
"Finzi is much under-rated as a composer. His works are firmly rooted in the lyrical and pastoral english traditions, but due to his music being somewhat unfashionable at the time it was written, his music has never had the profile of Parry or Elgar. This disc is one of my favourites, and showcases some of the highlights of his limited output of intrumental music, including his popular Clarinet Concerto. However, the elegiac Eclogue for piano and orchestra, reputably drawing from the piano concerto he never completed, is truly haunting. Highly recommended."- Anonymous
"Gerald Finzi (1901-56) may be Britain's most underrated composer. World War II began just as Finzi was ready to start his international career, and his early death from Hodgkin's Disease robbed England of one of its greatest musical talents. This centenary collection of Finzi's music, released in 2001 by William Boughton and the English String Orchestra, is an excellent introduction to Finzi. The CD contains some of his best-known music, including the Clarinet Concerto, the Eclogue for piano and strings, and the incidental music for Shakespeare's "Love's Labours Lost." Finzi's music is imbued with the spirit of English folksong--much like the music of his friend and mentor, Ralph Vaughan Williams--but also has a gentle, refined lyricism that reminds me of Gabriel Faure. The performances on this disc are exquisite, without exception. Anyone interested in English classical music should love this CD."- Miles D. Moore
"Gerald Finzi seems to be a figure in early 20th Century English music that is forgotten or at least in today's times he is for whatever reason. Finzi composed beautifully lyrical music that soothes and heals rather than challenge the listener. You won't be challenged by this music at all, which at the end of a long day is a good thing. That's not to say this music is simplistic, because it's not, it's just very accessible. Finzi's music touches on the more pastoral qualities of English life. He is perhaps better known for his vocal works, but this collection with William Boughton and his English String Orchestra is a fine addition to your collection even if you have some of these other works on other recordings. The audio quality is top-notch from Nimbus Records and the playing is remarkable. The whole disc is really good, but standouts for me are the "Clarinet Concerto," "Romance For Strings," and "Love's Labours Lost." Highly recommended."- Anonymous