The Wilfred Heaton Edition

Following the eventual success of Contest Music in 1982, Heaton received many requests to write new works. He had not written anything new for thirty years and turned most of them down. However, in the conductor Howard Snell he found a sympathetic champion and someone who was prepared to take his substantial concert works seriously. With the impulse to write afresh subdued, Heaton became adept at recycling the music he had written during his productive late 20s and early 30s and in 1992, forty years after its original composition, he set about re-fashioning a Rhapsody for Oboe and Strings into a Trombone Concerto.

This virtuoso work was first performed with Nicholas Hudson as soloist and has been recorded by Brett Baker with Black Dyke Band

The music is cast in three substantial sections taking the listener on what Howard Snell has described as a musical odyssey. All the thematic material is presented in the opening few moments – a modal scale of Sibelian portent on the basses, supported by mysterious trills, followed by the soloist’s opening gestures.The long first section is predominantly slow, but the tempo fluctuates with the ebb and flow of the solo line. The second subject material is full of rhetorical scales, trills and dissonant fanfares. Later Heaton introduces a quiet reference on the baritones to the famous trombone solo from the Seventh Symphony by Sibelius, emphasising perhaps how much this work owes to the example of that masterwork. After the energy of soloist and band is spent the symphonic arch comes full circle with the return of the music of the first section, though now rather more compressed and in reverse order. Finally, in a new magical coda, the opening material returns to end the concerto with calm resolution.

Duration: 26 mins

 

£95 plus postage and packing; extra scores £15

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