We are delighted to team up with Sound and Music to release this collection of works that were recorded between 2004-2006 as part of the Contemporary Voices scheme and are now held in the British Music Collection.
The eight volumes display a huge range of musical styles from choral pieces by Gabriel Jackson and Richard Baker, solo piano works by Tansy Davies and Luke Stoneham, ensemble works by Philip Cashian, Joe Cutler, Graham Fitkin, electro-acoustic works by Paul Whitty and Sam Hayden and electronic sound art by Katharine Norman and Evelyn Ficarra.
All the scores for these works are held in the British Music Collection, an archive that includes over 30,000 scores and recordings from British composers, dating from 1900 to the present day. Sound and Music, the national agency for new music, is working to develop the archive into a 21st century resource for today’s listeners and composers to explore the story of British music. The Collection contains both published and unpublished works, including many pieces that are out of print or hard to obtain. High-profile composers, such as Britten, Tippett, Birtwistle, Maxwell Davies, Cardew, Harvey, Weir, MacMillan, Turnage and Adès, are featured alongside currently emerging or less well-known composers whose work deserves rediscovery.
Purchase all 8 volumes for just £35 Release date 25 November
Over eight hours of music by 28 composers including Richard Ayres, Joe Cutler, Sam Hayden, Graham Fitkin, Tansy Davies, Luke Stoneham, Laurence Crane, Joseph Phibbs, Paul Whitty, Michael Zev Gordon, Geoff Hannan, Richard Baker, Katharine Norman, Andrew Toovey and Gabriel Jackson
Individual volumes are £5.99 (mp3) and £6.99 (FLAC)
Visit the project page here
Composers select and discuss their favourite pieces in the collection. Read their blogs on the Sound and Music website
from the NMC Shop
BRITTEN TO AMERICA (NMC D190)
What better way to mark the end of Britten's centenary than release some unrecorded works, the majority of which haven't been heard since they were performed in the 1940s. This is Britten with a difference - there are large sections of blues, jazz, a 'Tibetan' chant, a Bach chorale and even a ukulele number!
Britten made the hazardous journey from the United States back to England in the spring of 1942. Within a few weeks he had faced a Tribunal exempting him from military service as a conscientious objector. In his statement to the Tribunal he had said “I believe sincerely that I can help my fellow human beings best, by continuing the work I am best qualified to do”, and almost immediately he began giving concerts with Peter Pears in towns, rural villages and prisons. He also wrote three major scores for radio propaganda programmes: first Appointment, a BBC drama set in an internment camp in France: then An American in England, six programmes about wartime conditions in England produced by the BBC for live transmission in the USA by CBS; and lastly Britain to America, three programmes as part of a weekly transmission by NBC. The last of these was completed by January 1943; in spite of the speed with which they were written, the music is elaborate and dramatic – the composer is clearly limbering up for Peter Grimes, whose libretto was evolving during this period.
Samuel West, narrator
Andrew Kennedy, tenor
Jean Rigby, mezzo soprano
Mary Carewe, mezzo soprano
Ex Cathedra / Jeffrey Skidmore, conductor
Huw Watkins, piano
Hallé / Sir Mark Elder, conductor / Harry Ogg, assistant conductor
Download your free copy of Britten's rediscovered song Roman Wall Blues here
Britten to America is released December 9 PRE-ORDER YOUR COPY HERE