Home | Reviews | Articles | Festivals | Competitions | Other | Contact Us

Fiddle Sticks

Lou Harrison: Concerto for the Violin with Percussion Orchestra
Anne Dudley
: Vermilion Rhapsody
Tarik O'Regan
Fragments from a Gradual Process
Stuart Jones
: Gharnati
Simon Limbrick
: Mopti Street
trad Senegalese: Kumpo

Madeleine Mitchell
(violin) & ensemblebash with Karen Hutt

Signum - SIGCD111 (66 mins)

Madeleine Mitchell, "indefatigably adventurous", is a glamorous and exciting violinist. She was doubtless the moving spirit in bringing together this group of four guys plus two girls, whose concerts must delight live audiences and would be a wow on DVD.

On CD, however, it is the exoticisms of percussion that steal the limelight every time, and only the earliest work, Lou Harrison's Concerto (conceived c.1940, completed 1959) makes this a disc to recommend for purchasing by MP readers.

Harrison features a grand array of instruments including industrial brakedrums, flowerpots and plumbers pipe, and this work is a real winner. Kumpo represents Ensemble Bash's core repertoire of West African music.

Recording quality is of demonstration class, and - although there are no sound samples on line - complete information including all the inset notes can be accessed at http://www.signumrecords.com/catalogue/sigcd111/index.htm

Peter Grahame Woolf

See also Madeleine Mitchell's Violin Songs and Lou Harrison's Drums Along The Pacific and complete Harpsichord Music.

New Works for Percussion Ensemble

Bedford, D: Bash Peace Copeland: Breather Fitkin: Shard Hayes, N: Dance Play Leach: Echolalia McGarr: Sound Asleep
: Rimfire Skempton: Slip-stream Tippett, K: Dance of the Dragonfly

Ensemble Bash

Signum: SIGCD294 [c. £9]

A marvellous CD from the Bashers to show off your newest playing equipment.

Most of it is not loud; intricate subtleties from these multi-instrumentalists dominate the listening experience. Most of the pieces are c. 5 mins or so, but she short life of the dragonfly gets the longest work, a quarter of an hour!

The notes are good and really helpful. The credits are miniscule, almost unreadable in the middle of an otherwise empty page. Why? The technical people did a more than creditable job.

When's the DVD coming? Surely they had film cameras on hand...

Peter Grahame Woolf