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Untold - new music for ensemble Q
MacMillan, Cashian, Duddell, Brady & Davies

Susie Hodder-Williams piccolo, flute, alto flute, bass flute
Emma Feilding oboe, cor anglais, oboe d'amore
Stuart King clarinet
Jose Lluna french horn
Jo Turner bassoon, contra bassoon
Chris Walters bass clarinet
Fiona Ritchie percussion

MRCD135-C1103 (Blackheath Concert Halls, May 2003)

It has been a pleasure to follow the progress of the wind quintet Quintessence which has now become ensemble Q. Tansy Davies' Fern was the most substantial and impressive of their commissioned works reviewed at its Blackheath premiere and this excellent studio recording there is essentially taken from that programme, which also had a memorable account of Janacek's Mladi, exploiting the addition of bass clarinet to the group. The Davies work benefits from the further addition of percussion and Fern 's sound exploits the dark tones of contrabassoon and bass clarinet.

It is supported by a relatively 'easy listening' collection of pieces by British composers active at the end of the last century and the beginning of the new. The future of ensembleQ will depend on the quality of future commissions to create a repertoire, and composers invited to contribute ought to relish the scope of this attractive line-up.

See previous reviews of Quintessence & EnsembleQ at http://www.musicalpointers.co.uk/reviews/liveevents/q.html


© Peter Grahame Woolf