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Composers at the Savile Club

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A piano recital by Alexander Karpeyev of music by 12 Savilian composers

SOMM Recordings is pleased to announce the first commercial release of Composers at the Savile Club, pianist Alexander Karpeyev’s vivid and varied recital celebrating the 150th anniversary of the venerable London club.

Devised by Karpeyev and Jeremy Barlow (who will celebrate his 60th year as a Savile member in 2020 and also provides informative booklet notes) the recital includes music for solo piano by 11 leading Savile members to chart the development of British music from late romanticism to modernism – and back again.

Sam Pierce and Bradley Jones perform the two celebratory trumpet fanfares, by former Savilian Malcolm Arnold – his Savile Centenary Fanfare – and current Savile member, Julian Anderson – Fanfare: SC–GH composed for the sesquicentennial anniversary – that frame Karpeyev’s recital.

Among British luminaries featured are the composer-knights Edward Elgar (the lyrically atmospheric In Smyrna), William Walton (Façade’s delightful, dancing ‘Popular Song’), Malcolm Arnold (Variations on a Ukrainian Folk Song his most substantial work for solo piano) and Hubert Parry (the delicately antique Hands Across the Centuries Prelude).

Other notable names include Roger Quilter, Herbert Howells, Arthur Benjamin, William Alwyn and Henry Balfour Gardiner.

Two Irish dances by Dubliner Charles Villiers Stanford, the Romanian-born Francis Chagrin’s Suite Roumaine and three Musical Portraits by American Virgil Thomson complete a fascinating portrait of the Savile Club’s rich musical heritage.

Located in London’s Mayfair, the Savile Club was founded in 1868, its motto – “Sodalitas Convivium” – translating as “good fellowship and conviviality”. The Savile’s informality has attracted a host of distinguished names from the arts and sciences, including composers not featured on this recording Sir Arthur Bliss, William Lloyd Webber and Bernard Hermann and 17 Nobel Prize winners, among them poets Rudyard Kipling and WB Yeats, and physicists Ernest Rutherford and John Cockcroft.

On This Recording

    Julian Anderson

  1. Fanfare: SC-GH* 2:08
  2. Charles Hubert Parry

  3. Prelude from Hands Across the Centuries 2:13
  4. Roger Quilter

  5. In a Gondola (Two Impressions, Op.19) 3:14
  6. Herbert Howells

  7. Procession, Op.36 3:56
  8. Francis Chagrin: Suite Roumaine

  9. I Allegro con spirito 1:05
  10. II Moderato 2:16
  11. III Allegro 1:21
  12. Malcolm Arnold

  13. Variations on a Ukrainian Folk Song, Op.9 14:52
  14. Arthur Benjamin

  15. Scherzino 2:21
  16. William Alwyn

  17. Night Thoughts 4:51
  18. Virgil Thomson: Nineteen Portraits, 1981 [3:01]

  19. Round and Round (Dominique Nabokov) 0:53
  20. Singing a Song (Christopher Cox) 1:10
  21. Wide Awake (Bill Katz) 0:58
  22. William Walton

  23. Popular Song (Façade, arr. Roy Douglas) 2:27
  24. Henry Balfour Gardiner

  25. Shepherd Fennel’s Dance 5:08
  26. Edward Elgar

  27. In Smyrna 4:28
  28. Edward Elgar

  29. Serenade in G 2:14
  30. Charles Villiers Stanford: Four Irish Dances, Op.89, arr. Percy Grainger

  31. A Reel 4:44
  32. Leprechaun’s Dance 3:40
  33. Malcolm Arnold

  34. Savile Centenary Fanfare*

*Sam Pierce, Bradley Jones, trumpets

Reviews:

“It was recorded attractively in the Royal Academy of Music and is not stamped ‘Savile Club members only’. It makes instead for a neat little programme of (mostly) British repertoire that, because of its occasional nature, will be little-known but greatly enjoyed.” —Jonathan Woolf, MusicWeb International

“a recital eminently worth investigating” —Terry Blain, BBC Music Magazine – ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Recording Rating!