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Benjamin Dale: Piano Sonata; Prunella; Night Fancies / Danny Driver, piano

Album Summary

>Dale, Benjamin J. : Sonata for Piano in D minor, Op. 1
>Dale, Benjamin J. : Prunella, for piano (after the original for violin & piano)
>Dale, Benjamin J. : Night Fancies, impromptu for piano in D flat major, Op. 3
>Bowen, York : Miniature Suite, for piano in C major, Op. 14
Performer Composers

Notes & Reviews:

The monumental Piano Sonata in D minor was composed by a young Benjamin Dale while he was still a student at the Royal Academy of Music. Dale's contemporaries included the composer-pianists Arnold Bax and York Bowen. Dale dedicated the sonata to his close friend Bowen, who gave the premiere of the work at the Academy in February 1905 and astonished listeners with its daring structural originality, thematic integrity and breathtaking tonal colors. Also featured here are Dale's charming Prunella and Night Fancies in which the composer explores impressionistic colorings. Rather aptly, the final work on the disc is the first recording of York Bowen's Miniature Suite in C major, the "Humoresque" of which is dedicated reciprocally to Dale. His expressive sensibility and remarkable dexterity make young British pianist Danny Driver the ideal advocate for this repertoire.

Gramophone Magazine
Here is a disc to warm the hearts and minds of those who treasure romantic nostalgia...it is doubtful that [the Sonata] has ever been played with a more shining commitment than by Danny Driver. His performance ranges from thundering rhetoric to a whispering poetic delicacy...you become enthralled by a pianist of such magisterial warmth and finesse...This issue is as moving as it is superlative.

Classic FM Magazine
Danny Driver has an extraordinary affinity with English music of this period. He plays Dale's Sonata with a conviction and musicality that just might persuade you it's a forgotten masterpiece...Bowen's three-movement Suite, recorded with a slightly airier acoustic, is delivered with all the requisite wit and panache that the music demands.

BBC Music Magazine
Danny Driver's stylish and immaculate playing makes an outstanding case for some technically demanding music. One for English music aficionados.

The Telegraph
Danny Driver's superb performance shows a confident composer, imaginative in sustaining a span of 45 minutes. Night Fancies, which Driver plays at Wigmore Hall on July 9, flirts with Impressionism, to which York Bowen's Miniature Suite is a brilliant foil.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: Henry Wood Hall, London (2010-07-15_2010-07-17&2010-).



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Works Details

>Dale, Benjamin J. : Sonata for Piano in D minor, Op. 1
  • Performer: Danny Driver (Piano)
  • Notes: Henry Wood Hall, London (07/15/2010-07/17/2010)
  • Running Time: 12 min. 18 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1902-1905

>Dale, Benjamin J. : Prunella, for piano (after the original for violin & piano)
  • Performer: Danny Driver (Piano)
  • Notes: Henry Wood Hall, London (07/15/2010-07/17/2010)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 44 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1923

>Dale, Benjamin J. : Night Fancies, impromptu for piano in D flat major, Op. 3
  • Performer: Danny Driver (Piano)
  • Notes: Henry Wood Hall, London (07/15/2010-07/17/2010)
  • Running Time: 9 min. 1 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1909

>Bowen, York : Miniature Suite, for piano in C major, Op. 14
  • Performer: Danny Driver (Piano)
  • Running Time: 11 min. 21 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1904