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James MacMillan: A Deep but Dazzling Darkness; Veni, Veni, Emmanuel / Colin Currie: percussion, Gordan Nikolic: violin

Audio Samples

>MacMillan, James : A Deep but Dazzling Darkness, for solo violin, ensemble & tape
>MacMillan, James : I (A Meditation on Iona), for orchestra & percussion
>MacMillan, James : Veni, Veni Emmanuel, concerto for percussion & orchestra

Album Summary

>MacMillan, James : A Deep but Dazzling Darkness, for solo violin, ensemble & tape
>MacMillan, James : I (A Meditation on Iona), for orchestra & percussion
>MacMillan, James : Veni, Veni Emmanuel, concerto for percussion & orchestra
Performers Conductor Ensemble Composer

Notes & Reviews:

Financial Times, July 2012
Veni, Veni gives the lie to the argument that percussion concertos are dependent on visual impact. MacMillan's is an aural blockbuster, and Colin Currie, the soloist, dazzles with his dexterity and musical imagination.

bbc.co.uk, July 2012
[Nikolic] renders electric MacMillan's extraordinary, bleak-sounding Eastern European gypsy strains, building them to a skin-prickling climax of virtuosic frenzy. Meanwhile, the orchestra gives a performance so highly charged you'll be rushing for the programme notes to search for the spiritual meaning behind the piece.

Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2012
Nikolitch is the potent violinist in his expressions of Shostakovich-like apprehension and the orchestra paints an unnerving backdrop of darkness and flickers of light. [Veni, veni] sounds as wonderfully fresh, imaginative, rhythmically impulsive and vibrantly colourful as it did all those years ago at its Proms premiere.

The Arts Desk, October 2012
What you miss is the visual element - being able to see the remarkable Colin Currie rapidly switching between marimba, timps, gongs and cowbells. Challenge Classics's production is handsomely done though - listen through a pair of decent headphones and you can visualise exactly what's going on...It's a wonderful piece, and this is a definitive performance.

BBC Music Magazine, December 2012
MacMillan's is a strikingly expansive view of his own piece, textures lightened, with a feeling of chamber music-making in many places...It's an absorbing spiritual rendition, and I prefer it to its more explicitly virtuosic predecessors.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: Netherlands Broadcasting Music Centre.



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Works Details

>MacMillan, James : A Deep but Dazzling Darkness, for solo violin, ensemble & tape
  • Performer: Gordan Nikolic (Violin)
  • Conductor: James MacMillan
  • Ensemble: Netherlands Radio Chamber Philharmonic
  • Running Time: 23 min. 49 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2001-2002

>MacMillan, James : I (A Meditation on Iona), for orchestra & percussion
  • Performer: Colin Currie (Percussion)
  • Conductor: James MacMillan
  • Ensemble: Netherlands Radio Chamber Philharmonic
  • Running Time: 16 min. 24 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1996

>MacMillan, James : Veni, Veni Emmanuel, concerto for percussion & orchestra
  • Performer: Colin Currie (Percussion)
  • Conductor: James MacMillan
  • Ensemble: Netherlands Radio Chamber Philharmonic
  • Running Time: 30 min. 12 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Concerto
  • Written: 1992