CD Review: Flute Perspectives Vol. 3

by | Jun 27, 2022 | Ambassador thoughts, CD/Recording, Composer, Flute, Piano

Flute Perspectives, Vol. 3.

Derek Jones – flute, Jerry Wong- piano, Leigh Harrold – piano

 

The first thing that strikes the listener in this new CD of Australian flute music is the rich, gorgeous tone of flautist Derek Jones and the elegant, and where appropriate, athletic pianism of both Jerry Wong and Leigh Harrold. The performers treat the works with utmost care and I am sure the composers were thrilled with the recordings.

It is always pleasing to come across a composer that I have not previously heard and Rohan Phillips’ Invention (V) is a true delight. Written only last year this is obviously a composer who does not bend with the winds of fashion but has a deeply thought out musical language and applies it with great creativity. The music evolves in what seems both an organic and highly structured way. I want to hear more music by Rohan Phillips in concert. 

To see the Sonata for flute and piano from 1962 by Miriam Hyde receiving due attention is a true pleasure. This important composer of music for young people also had a large output of music for the concert hall and this sweetly romantic work holds up well today and deserves to be heard many more times and including on radio. Jones and Wong are perfectly impish in the Allegro giocoso and in the Andante Pastoral they convey a simple and straightforward approach to the music.

I first heard the unaccompanied flute work Déjà Vu by Johanna Selleck in a concert in Melbourne a few years back and again three times in Sydney this year. And this recording by Jones of this totally captivating composition is pure magic. The listener can easily lose track of the passage of time as the music goes through a series of episodes that can turn on a semiquaver and then with undulating passages lull us along for what seems a weird flutistic journey. Brilliant performance of a work that explores inherent flute soundscapes. 

There are also fine new works by Linda Verrier and Tom Henry – both substantial and great additions to the flute repertoire. 

Seeing as this is volume 3 of the series I dipped into Volume 2 in the back catalogue and thoroughly enjoyed the brilliant performance by Jones and pianist Cameron Roberts of Richard Meale’s masterful Sonata for flute and piano from 1960. And I heard another work by Rohan Phillips, this time a work from 20 years earlier, Fragment III for flute and piano and again I found his music charmed.

On the first in the series Jones and pianist Leigh Harrold perform such staples as Peter Sculthorpe’s Song of Sea and Sky and Anne Boyd’s ever popular Goldfish through Summer Rain with graceful performances. And as an extra bonus Derek Jones appears as a composer in the meditative improvisation-like Stillness. And Jones is stunning in Mark Pollard’s alto flute monster Under Simple Stars music that taunts, then shrieks and even placates. Would be great to watch it, hear it, in concert.

All three CDs would be a perfect addition to anyone who follows the culture of new music in Australia.


http://www.move.com.au/disc/flute-perspectives-3

Flute Perspectives 3 is available as as CD. It can be purchased online through Buywell Music or the Australian Music Centre which both offer secure online ordering. 

Move CDs can be ordered through music retailers across Australia including Readings


Track Listing

 Sonata for flute and piano (2019) Tom Henry

1   The elements

2   Inner worlds

3    Introduction and finale

 Sonatine for flute and piano (2019) Linda Verrier

5   Déjà Vu (1994) Johanna Selleck

6    Invention (V) (2021) Rohan Phillips

 Sonata for flute and piano (1962) Miriam Hyde

7    Allegro giocoso

8    Andante Pastoral

9    Allegro con spirito


 

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