Author Topic: The Cooke Book  (Read 13092 times)

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Offline Christo

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Re: The Cooke Book
« Reply #20 on: September 25, 2011, 12:56:32 AM »
Presumably this refers to Moeran's unfinished Symphony in E flat major, the manuscript of which went to Australia after his death. Someone must have reconstructed/finished the piece.

Never heard that story before. It would be nice to hear the piece - though we actually have a Second by Moeran.

He preferred to call it a Sinfonietta (1940), but hearing them one after another - as in e.g. the Naxos version of the BSO under David Lloyd-Jones - reveals them to be two of a kind.
… music is not only an 'entertainment’, nor a mere luxury, but a necessity of the spiritual if not of the physical life, an opening of those magic casements through which we can catch a glimpse of that country where ultimate reality will be found.    RVW, 1948

Offline Christo

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Re: The Cooke Book
« Reply #21 on: September 25, 2011, 01:10:37 AM »
Very funny - I wonder if we are heading inexorably towards the formation of a group of self-appointed, so-called 'Arnold Cooke experts'.
 ;D

The Braga Santos experts are ready for wider use. 8)
… music is not only an 'entertainment’, nor a mere luxury, but a necessity of the spiritual if not of the physical life, an opening of those magic casements through which we can catch a glimpse of that country where ultimate reality will be found.    RVW, 1948

Offline vandermolen

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Re: The Cooke Book
« Reply #22 on: September 26, 2011, 06:31:27 AM »
Never heard that story before. It would be nice to hear the piece - though we actually have a Second by Moeran.

He preferred to call it a Sinfonietta (1940), but hearing them one after another - as in e.g. the Naxos version of the BSO under David Lloyd-Jones - reveals them to be two of a kind.

Yes - the Sinfonietta is really a Second Symphony. I think that Colin is right. My understanding was that Moeran's 'Second Symphony' was in fragments and according to Geoffrey Self's biography, not very good. But, then again, similar things were said about Elgar's 'Third Symphony'.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

'The test of a work of art is, in the end, our affection for it, not our ability to explain why it is good' (Stanley Kubrick).

Offline J.Z. Herrenberg

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Re: The Cooke Book
« Reply #23 on: September 26, 2011, 06:42:12 AM »
Very funny - I wonder if we are heading inexorably towards the formation of a group of self-appointed, so-called 'Arnold Cooke experts'.

 ;D

The Braga Santos experts are ready for wider use. 8)


Yes, that would be ACE.  ;)
Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything. -- Plato

Offline Dundonnell

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Re: The Cooke Book
« Reply #24 on: September 26, 2011, 06:54:41 AM »
 ;D ;D ;D

.....now off to Annoy you on the HB thread ;D

Offline Christo

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Re: The Cooke Book
« Reply #25 on: September 27, 2011, 10:07:45 AM »
;D ;D ;D

.....now off to Annoy you on the HB thread ;D

Great to see you back, here! I still wonder what urged you to do so: was it the shock of hearing the Gothic - or that of seeing all those Brianites in one place.  ;D
… music is not only an 'entertainment’, nor a mere luxury, but a necessity of the spiritual if not of the physical life, an opening of those magic casements through which we can catch a glimpse of that country where ultimate reality will be found.    RVW, 1948

Offline J.Z. Herrenberg

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Re: The Cooke Book
« Reply #26 on: September 27, 2011, 10:30:00 AM »
Hi, Johan! Colin was busy on a heavy tome, which kept him glued to his desk (more or less, in between visits to different countries).  ;D But it's good he has returned to GMG - the board's staunched advocate of (unknown) orchestral music.
Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything. -- Plato

Offline Lethevich

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Re: The Cooke Book
« Reply #27 on: September 27, 2011, 11:04:23 AM »
Now we just need some advocates of unknown chamber music - it seems to get lost in the solo piano/orchestra/opera crowd... ;)
Peanut butter, flour and sugar do not make cookies. They make FIRE.

Offline vandermolen

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Re: The Cooke Book
« Reply #28 on: September 27, 2011, 11:20:27 AM »
Listening to Cooke's Third Symphony - the opening movement is very reminiscent of Rawsthorne (a composer I admire)- the eloquence of the second movement is both moving, at the end, and memorable. The short finale is a fine summing up - Berkeley (L.) also came to mind. Altogether a fine work. His dates are impressive (1906-2005) - even longer than Havergal Brian's on the same CD!
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

'The test of a work of art is, in the end, our affection for it, not our ability to explain why it is good' (Stanley Kubrick).

Offline J.Z. Herrenberg

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Re: The Cooke Book
« Reply #29 on: September 27, 2011, 11:23:26 AM »
Well, I AM going to listen to it. But there is so much unknown music I am digesting at the moment, I must pick the right moment...
Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything. -- Plato

Offline Lethevich

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Re: The Cooke Book
« Reply #30 on: September 27, 2011, 01:35:19 PM »
The all-Cooke Lyrita disc is so good (playing it now), it almost makes up for the near-total lack of recordings of the composer's orchestral music.

The concerto for orchestra continues to impress me. The first movement involves rather theatrical contrasts between the main theme and the quieter concerto grosso-style sections that sound so "right" throughout the movement. I am used to "lesser" composers unable to produce cohesive wholes, but there is a dagger-sharp line going right through this movement, leading to an almost casual but inevitable simple modification of the theme into an ending. The central movement's theme is tweaked in ways involving constant reference back to the start, just as in the opening theme for the first movement, but with wonderful nocturnal mood. The finale unifies the work with a casual ease via a swelling theme, once again repeating in the same playful and extremely economical manner that Cooke established in the previous movements, each reappearance offers a momentary a release to the tension of Cooke's simple but taut development affording the work a perculiarly ecstatic, dancing quality. The piece is only around 15 minutes long, and so spare in its material, but there's all kinds of neat stuff going on.
« Last Edit: September 27, 2011, 01:37:05 PM by Lethe Dmitriyevich Pettersson »
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Offline Dundonnell

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Re: The Cooke Book
« Reply #31 on: September 27, 2011, 01:58:35 PM »
Sorry to be so pedantic ;D...but you are referring to the Concerto for String Orchestra of 1948 rather than the Concerto for Orchestra of 1986-Cooke's last major orchestral work. The latter was given a first performance by the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra in 1987 but has never been recorded.

Offline Dundonnell

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Re: The Cooke Book
« Reply #32 on: September 27, 2011, 01:59:36 PM »
Great to see you back, here! I still wonder what urged you to do so: was it the shock of hearing the Gothic - or that of seeing all those Brianites in one place.  ;D

http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,19312.0.html

 :)

Offline Lethevich

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Re: The Cooke Book
« Reply #33 on: September 27, 2011, 02:06:50 PM »
Sorry to be so pedantic ;D...but you are referring to the Concerto for String Orchestra of 1948 rather than the Concerto for Orchestra of 1986-Cooke's last major orchestral work. The latter was given a first performance by the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra in 1987 but has never been recorded.

Oh, the string orchestra one, indeedie.
Peanut butter, flour and sugar do not make cookies. They make FIRE.

Offline Christo

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Re: The Cooke Book
« Reply #34 on: October 11, 2011, 11:21:42 AM »
Totally agree with you about the Ruth Gipps Symphony No 4 - her masterpiece I expect (although I like the Symphony No 2 on Classico - a very endearing score). I'd also like to see Dutton take up the cause of Wilfrid Josephs. I heard that they were intending to record 'Moeran's Second Symphony'  :o

Nice to hear from you Johan  :)

:-) Playing Ruth Gipps' Second, in one movement, from 1945. I really love the piece. It is quite impressive for an 23 year old. I don't know how exactly the symphony hangs together formally, but the ideas come and go and especially the way tension is built up and alterated with moments of sheer lyricism and pure beauty, makes it great in my ears.

The alteration between these poles show the symphonist that she really is. Some of the lyrical ideas, often coming after a more dramatic passage, are so moving that I clung the piece to my heart at first hearing. In this, she resembles Braga Santos. She must have been a remarkable personality.
… music is not only an 'entertainment’, nor a mere luxury, but a necessity of the spiritual if not of the physical life, an opening of those magic casements through which we can catch a glimpse of that country where ultimate reality will be found.    RVW, 1948

Offline Christo

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Re: The Cooke Book
« Reply #35 on: October 11, 2011, 11:32:02 AM »
Johan, first of all so nice to speak with you again :)

The pleasure is absolutely mine! :-) I've been playing William Wordsworth's Second and Third again, these days. I gift from your visit to Utrecht. Great to learn about the heavy tome you produced during your two years of silence, in this forum. I wrote a few things as well in the meantime, but they dwindle in comparison. :-)

Somehow, they fit in a similar category: Wordsworth, Gipps, Cooke, Bate. Playing Gipps' lovely Second at the time.

                                         

… music is not only an 'entertainment’, nor a mere luxury, but a necessity of the spiritual if not of the physical life, an opening of those magic casements through which we can catch a glimpse of that country where ultimate reality will be found.    RVW, 1948

Offline Dundonnell

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Re: The Cooke Book
« Reply #36 on: October 22, 2011, 04:03:51 AM »
Special Notice for the Cooke fans:

I have now uploaded radio broadcasts of Cooke's

Symphony No.4(1974): BBC Symphony Orchestra(Sir John Pritchard)

Symphony No.5(1979): BBC Northern Symphony Orchestra(Bernard Keefe)

Violin Concerto(1958): Yfrah Neaman(violin) and the BBC Northern Symphony Orchestra(Vernon Handley)

Oboe Concerto(1954): Janet Craxton(oboe) and the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra(George Malcolm)

Offline Christo

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Re: The Cooke Book
« Reply #37 on: October 22, 2011, 02:38:30 PM »
Special Notice for the Cooke fans: I have now uploaded radio broadcasts of Cooke's
Symphony No.4(1974): BBC Symphony Orchestra(Sir John Pritchard)
Symphony No.5(1979): BBC Northern Symphony Orchestra(Bernard Keefe)
Violin Concerto(1958): Yfrah Neaman(violin) and the BBC Northern Symphony Orchestra(Vernon Handley)
Oboe Concerto(1954): Janet Craxton(oboe) and the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra(George Malcolm)

Many thanks indeed!! Have been playing the Fifth from 1979 for an hour or so, in amazement. No change of style to be heard since the First from 1947! Cooke found his style in the 1940s and apparently didn't change it ever after. Again, I'm falling in love with it at first (and second) hearing. Neoclassicism at its best.
… music is not only an 'entertainment’, nor a mere luxury, but a necessity of the spiritual if not of the physical life, an opening of those magic casements through which we can catch a glimpse of that country where ultimate reality will be found.    RVW, 1948

Offline Lethevich

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Re: The Cooke Book
« Reply #38 on: October 23, 2011, 05:00:32 PM »
So far the 5th symphony has grabbed me more than the 4th. It has a typically noble, restrained slow movement full of Cooke's usual attractive solo passages. And that opening to the first movement - really impressive, my favourite of the ones I've heard so far (1, 3, 4, 5).
Peanut butter, flour and sugar do not make cookies. They make FIRE.

Offline vandermolen

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Re: The Cooke Book
« Reply #39 on: July 06, 2015, 05:25:42 AM »
Time to revive this thread I think. Have been listening to symphonies 1,3 and Jabez today - all fine works. The slow movement of No.3 remains my favourite Cooke moment for now - especially the closing section but I am enjoying all these works. There is an underlying integrity to his music which I find very appealing. I think that Johan's (Christo) Lennox Berkeley connection is spot on - I find the appeal of the two composers very similar - an elegant and eloquent neo-classicism with an underlying emotional appeal, which is all the more poignant when it breaks through. Looking forward to zillions of replies  8).
« Last Edit: July 06, 2015, 05:31:28 AM by vandermolen »
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

'The test of a work of art is, in the end, our affection for it, not our ability to explain why it is good' (Stanley Kubrick).