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Alwyn - Hunter's Moon

Discussion in 'Submission Room' started by Affinity, Jan 17, 2013.

  1. Affinity

    Affinity New Member

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    Hunter's Moon is another collection of impressionistic sketches by William Alwyn, in the same vein as the previously uploaded April Morn, supposedly composed to be used as ABRSM exam pieces in the 1930s. However, these are slightly more sizeable and evocative of different scenes, with very haunting and memorable oriental melodies. Do enjoy (as I did playing them)! Comments are welcome as well.

    Alwyn - Hunter's Moon no. 1 "Midsummer Magic

    Alwyn - Hunter's Moon no. 2 "The Darkening Wood"

    Alwyn - Hunter's Moon no. 3 "Ride by Night"
     
  2. hreichgott

    hreichgott New Member

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    I really enjoyed these, both the compositions and your playing. In particular you have a very nice sense of line that is perfect for these long melodies. The rhythm is sometimes subsumed to melodic concerns but that is the right choice for these pieces in my opinion.

    This is the first Alwyn I've heard and I am happy to know him. Thanks pianosociety for your love of moderately obscure composers!
     
  3. andrew

    andrew Member Piano Society Artist

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    Attractive pieces: in particular there was a nice sense of ebb and flow and dialogue in no.2. Is there some sonic distortion in the opening of the first one and around 40s and 70s in? Sympathetic playing on your part in all three.
     
  4. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    :roll: :) (I've always disliked when people say that)

    But anyway, that was nice, Jonathan. I think I liked no. 3 the best, followed by no. 2. Well-played!
     
  5. StuKautsch

    StuKautsch Member

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    Yes - very good Jonathan.
    I second the concern raised by Andrew about the sound in the first piece, though. Perhaps you got carried away with the reverb??
    Picky: The attack on the first note in the first piece sounds a little apologetic, particularly since everything after that point is not.

    You'll be up to 7 pieces. Maybe it's time for a bio?? You look like "the Alwyn man" to me! :)
     
  6. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    Yes, that is right. Seven pieces by the same composer in the 'various' category is too much. We need a page for Alwyn now. Please provide a bio for him, Jonathan. :)
     
  7. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    I can only repeat what others have already said. Great repertoire choice, very good playing, sound adequate but could be better. I found these pieces less immediately appealing than those of April Morn. But maybe they just need more listening/
     
  8. Affinity

    Affinity New Member

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    Thanks for the comments, especially regarding the audio distortions in the first piece. I suppose it could be the 'night breeze' blowing through the recorder or something. Will be sure to record it again soon.

    As for the bio, I thought I had already posted it in the other topic. Here it is again though.

    Bio:

    William Alwyn was born at Northampton in 1905. He studied the flute, the piano, and composition at the Royal Academy of Music, and ultimately taught composition there from 1926 (at the age of 21) to 1955. He wrote a number of orchestral works and film scores, most notably those for Odd Man Out and The Fallen Idol, as well as four operas.

    His approach to composition is essentially impressionistic, and he is often identified with the British impressionists, such as Sir Arnold Bax, Frank Bridge, and John Ireland. While not quite as well-known as his peers, he assimilated a wide range of musical idioms, dabbling in serialism (in his Third Symphony), neo-classicism, and jazz, which show through in his compositions.

    He died at Suffolk in 1985, and is survived by his second wife, the composer Doreen Carwithen.
     
  9. MarkB

    MarkB Member Piano Society Artist

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    Nice pieces and very good playing.

    What next, Alwyn's Fantasy Waltzes ? They're good pieces too.

    Thank you.

    Mark
     
  10. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    Thanks for the bio, Jonathan. It's been a holiday weekend for me so I haven't had much time, but I've just now uploaded your recordings here and will try to make the new Alwyn page tomorrow when I go back to work.
     
  11. pianoman342

    pianoman342 New Member Piano Society Artist

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    Hi Jonathan,

    Had a listen to your Hunter's Moon set, which I haven't heard before. I think you make a good case for these pieces. They are interesting "miniatures" IMO, and with these sounding nice I am now curious to hear his Fantasy Waltzes as Mark points out.

    Again, nice job here!
     
  12. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    I've made the new pages and transferred your Alwyn recordings out of the 'various' table and into the new Alwyn pages. Please check to see if it's all ok. Sorry it took me so long....
     
  13. johngrant

    johngrant New Member

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    I don't know this music (sue me!) But you have wonderful chops....and I can't honestly imagine this music played any better!

    I love to hear a great piano-feel, which is more than amply demonstrated here.

    Hey.... let's tune that instrument... but, then again, maybe not... 'cause it sounds pretty darn nice when you play it just as it is.

    JLG
     
  14. Rachfan

    Rachfan Active Member Piano Society Artist

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    Hi Jonathan,

    I enjoyed hearing your renditions of these pieces of Alwyn. I especially liked "The Darkening Wood" with its lyrical impressionism. Very fine playing on your part.

    David
     
  15. Affinity

    Affinity New Member

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    @All: Thanks for the comments, glad you guys enjoy it.

    @MarkB: Thank you. Sadly, I only have the Naxos albums of his piano works and not the chandos ones. You've piqued my interest though, and I'll be sure to do more research.

    @pianolady: Nah it's fine. Thanks a lot for the help. The only thing is that the link from the home page to 'Alwyn' under 'recent composers' still links back to the main page, but other than that all seems fine.

    @JLG: Thanks for the comment. Yeah, the piano seems to have 'untuned' itself subtly after a shorter time than I'm used to. Still, really good ears.

    If you're interested, Ashley Wass records them as well under the Naxos label in a clearer manner, though less imaginative interpretation in my view.
     

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