Wednesday August 30 2017

A touching and beautifully presented tribute to a significant figure in 20th-century British music‘ – The Guardian

NMC Recordings, the label that promotes the recording of new music, will be releasing Imogen Holst: String Chamber Music on 22 September 2017.

This award-winning album of first recordings of Imogen Holst’s chamber works was originally released on the Court Lane Music label and is now an important addition to the NMC catalogue, and a tribute to one of its founders.

Stylistically, many of the works share a similar sound world to early Tippett and Finzi, however during the 1930s Imogen heard Berg’s Wozzeck in Vienna, which had a profound impact on her and her music. Her Sonata for Violin and Cello, written during this time, explores a darker, more unsettling dissonance. Other works on the recording include Phantasy Quartet, Duo for Viola and Piano, String Trio No. 1, The Fall of the Leaf and String Quintet.

Colin Matthews, composer, director of music at the Britten-Pears Foundation and fellow founder of NMC says of the release:

‘Imogen Holst was a visionary. When together we established the Holst Foundation, not long before her death in 1984, she was clear that she did not want its future role to be to subsidise her father’s music in the way that most other composer trusts function. Instead she hoped that it would be able to support the work of living composers; and this is what the Foundation has done for nearly 30 years. We had talked at length about the possibility of funding recordings, and although it took a while to get NMC off the ground, I have always felt that the label was founded with her blessing, and that she would have approved whole-heartedly of what we have achieved since 1989.’

The CD is priced £12.99 and is available for pre-order now.

Image: Imogen Holst conducting a choir by Brian Seed.