Iain Farrington

Pianist, organist, composer, arranger

Elgar - Concert Allegro, Symphony No. 2, Piano Improvisations


Iain Farrington, Piano

George Vass, Conductor

Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra


Dutton Epoch CDLX7259


Full details and sound samples available here.




Iain Farrington features as pianist in his own version of Elgar's Concert Allegro for piano, in a version for piano and orchestra recorded with the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra conducted by George Vass. Written in 1901, the Concert Allegro was long forgotten until it was rediscovered and performed in 1969. Written for Fanny Davies as a 'Concerto (without orchestra)', Elgar is reported to have considered recasting it as a work for piano and orchestra, and in realising this intention Iain Farrington has given us music not only brilliant and powerful in its piano writing but also emphasising the broad second tune. Iain Farrington also plays his transcription of Elgar's Second Symphony for piano solo, and two of Elgar’s own Piano Improvisations


Full details and sound samples available here.


CONTENTS:


Concert Allegro op.41 – for piano and orchestra (1901 arr. 2007)

arranged by Iain Farrington


Symphony no.2 in E flat major op.63 – for piano solo (1911 arr. 2009) arranged by Iain Farrington

i. Allegro vivace e nobilmente

ii. Larghetto

iii. Rondo: Presto

iv. Moderato e maestoso


Two Piano Improvisations, transcribed by Iain Farrington

i. Improvisation No.2 in G minor (1929 trans. 2004)

ii. Improvisation No.5 in D minor (1929 trans. 2004)



Concert Allegro broadcast on Classic FM (David Mellor CD recommendation) and BBC Radio Three by Rob Cowan



Reviews:


The Observer

Elgar conceived the Concert Allegro as a piano piece in 1901 but later gave the score to a colleague suggesting that he orchestrate it. This never happened, and we have had to wait until now to hear Iain Farrington's hugely attractive attempt at this mini concerto. Farrington makes the most of several trademark Elgarian flourishes and sweeping themes, much enhanced by some majestic playing from the Bournemouth players. His formidable pianism comes to the fore in his impressive reduction of the emotional second symphony and in two transcriptions of recorded improvisations by Elgar; exquisite insights into the mind of a giant of English music.


International Record Review - IRR OUTSTANDING

Farrington's idealized version is quite superb and his performance... really holds up the work as a significant addition to the repertoire...one can have little doubt that the piano arrangement [of Symphony No. 2] works most viably on its own terms, not just as a homage or academic exercise but as a satisfying symphonic experience.