Bevan-Baker: Songs of Courtship and other works

Album Summary

>Baker, John Bevan : Songs of Courtship, for choir & 2 pianos
>Baker, John Bevan : Duo, for oboe & cello
>Baker, John Bevan : Piano Suite
>Baker, John Bevan : Spring, for violin
>Baker, John Bevan : Triptych, for cello & piano
>Baker, John Bevan : A Song for Kate, for strings
>Baker, John Bevan : Eclogue, for orchestra
>Baker, John Bevan : Rorate Coeli Desuper, for 4 voices, strings, organ, trumpet & tubular bells
Performers Conductor Ensemble Composer

Notes & Reviews:

"I found it difficult to credit that John Bevan Baker's Songs of Courtship, completed in 1988 and receiving their first recording here, were from the same pen as the other pieces on this CD. Even Rorate coeli desuper, also from 1988, appears to inhabit a different musical world from the Songs, yet this piece also suggests a gulf between the composer's approach to voices and to instruments. On this track, a setting of a poem by 15th-century Scottish poet William Dunbar, the choral writing seemed to be striving to achieve an effect, while that for the instruments - not least supple early passages for cello and bass - flowed naturally, effortlessly creating an atmosphere. The Songs, a set of admittedly inventive miniatures, were conceived for the amateur choir that Baker founded in Fortrose on the Moray Firth where he spent his retirement from music teaching, so I may be accused of judging them too harshly; but some of the instrumental pieces were also written for non-professionals and I found all of these more engaging, stimulating and satisfying. Whatever, Peter Maxwell Davies has described Baker's music as "beautifully crafted, transparently honestof great warmth and melodic fecundity" and you may consider that to be a sufficient recommendation. I had no reservations about the instrumental works, which are full of life, developed with a vigorous and organic logic and performed with great affection. I don't think it is too fanciful to hear Baker's love of Scotland and its countryside and coastlands throughout these pieces." -Gramophone

Opera Magazine
Bevan Baker's music glistens with excitement and vitality, refreshing in its originality...



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Works Details

>Baker, John Bevan : Songs of Courtship, for choir & 2 pianos
  • Performer: Stuart Hope (Piano)
  • Notes: Greyfriars Kirk, Edinburgh, Scotland (10/03/2004-10/05/2004)
  • Running Time: 14 min. 38 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1992

>Baker, John Bevan : Duo, for oboe & cello
  • Performers: William Conway (Cello); Douglas Boyd (Oboe)
  • Notes: Greyfriars Kirk, Edinburgh, Scotland (10/03/2004-10/05/2004)
  • Running Time: 8 min. 40 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1981

>Baker, John Bevan : Piano Suite
  • Performers: Graeme McNaught (Piano); Stuart Hope (Piano)
  • Notes: Greyfriars Kirk, Edinburgh, Scotland (10/03/2004-10/05/2004)
  • Running Time: 7 min. 55 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1962-1972

>Baker, John Bevan : Spring, for violin
  • Performer: Sarah Bevan-Baker (Violin)
  • Notes: Greyfriars Kirk, Edinburgh, Scotland (10/03/2004-10/05/2004)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 18 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1983

>Baker, John Bevan : Triptych, for cello & piano
  • Performers: Graeme McNaught (Piano); William Conway (Cello); Stuart Hope (Piano)
  • Notes: Greyfriars Kirk, Edinburgh, Scotland (10/03/2004-10/05/2004)
  • Running Time: 8 min. 25 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1980

>Baker, John Bevan : A Song for Kate, for strings
  • Conductor: William Conway
  • Ensemble: Hebrides Ensemble
  • Notes: Greyfriars Kirk, Edinburgh, Scotland (10/03/2004-10/05/2004)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 6 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1988

>Baker, John Bevan : Eclogue, for orchestra
  • Performer: William Conway (Cello)
  • Conductor: William Conway
  • Ensemble: Hebrides Ensemble
  • Notes: Greyfriars Kirk, Edinburgh, Scotland (10/03/2004-10/05/2004)
  • Running Time: 8 min. 23 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1994

>Baker, John Bevan : Rorate Coeli Desuper, for 4 voices, strings, organ, trumpet & tubular bells
  • Conductor: William Conway
  • Ensemble: Hebrides Ensemble
  • Notes: Greyfriars Kirk, Edinburgh, Scotland (10/03/2004-10/05/2004)
  • Running Time: 9 min. 50 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1988