Translations Musical Opinion 2019

Translations: Early Chamber Works - Prima Facie PFNSCD009

This is a thoroughy engaging and very nicely recorded programme of music by Peter Dickinson concentrating on early chamber pieces from the 1950 and 1960s, some in later editions or revisions, and concluding with three elegant piano solos performed by the man himself...Dickinson has always been a composer of elegant music - and appreciator of it too, as his many artices and books aver - and this is the most prominent thread connecting these works. Economy, too, is a virtue he has cultivated from the beginning, as the early Sonatina for recorder & piano (1955) and Fantasy for clarinet & piano (1956) demonstrate. In contrast his Threnody for cello & piano of the same period reveals a more expressive serious side to his natue in music of not insubstantial depth. His lyrical side comes out in the two versions of Lullaby...

Dickinson's writing for wind instruments generally is highly adept, as can be seen in the lively and varied Four Duos for flute & cello (1962), the two duos for clarinet & piano, and the bracingly difficult Sonatina for solo bassoon...Most impressive of these early works is the trio for recorder, viola da gamba and harpsichord, Translations (1971), an integrated set of fantasy-variations on a simple melody embracing a range of contemporary styles...The performances are all first rate, captured in beautifully clear sound. well worth investigating.

Guy Rickards, Musical Opinion, January-March 2019

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