Magazine article Gramophone

Nixon: 'Complete Orchestral Music, Vol 1'

Magazine article Gramophone

Nixon: 'Complete Orchestral Music, Vol 1'

Article excerpt


'Complete Orchestral Music, Vol 1'

Concert Overture No 3, 'Jacta est alea'. Romance (a). Palamon and Arcite

(a) Ana Torok vn

Kodaly Philharmonic Orchestra / Paul Mann

Toccata Classics (F) TOCC0372 (71' * DDD)

Born in Kennington, south London, Henry Cotter Nixon (1842-1907) studied privately with Henry Smart, Charles Steggall and George Alexander Macfarren. During his twenties he was active as an organist, pianist, orchestral player and conductor, before settling in Hastings, where he established a music college and served for 12 years as chief of the local orchestra (which thrived under his stewardship).

The three works on this bold issue reveal a composer of no great stylistic originality but whose music nonetheless displays a lyrical fecundity, honesty of expression and no mean orchestral expertise that hold the attention--some feat given that the ambitious main offering here, the 1882 symphonic poem in five movements entitled Palamon and Arcite (based on John Dryden's eponymous reimagining of 'The Knight's Tale' from Chaucer), clocks in at just under 48 minutes! …

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