Lennox Berkeley: The Complete Piano Works
Sir Lennox Berkeley (1903-1989), one of the most versatile of twentieth-century English composers, wrote music in a wide variety of genres – his output includes four symphonies, four operas (plus the unfinished Faldon Park), three string quartets and numerous songs, choral pieces and works for solo piano. Sadly, he is only remembered for a fraction of this output, including the Four Poems of St Teresa of Avila, the Missa Brevis, the Flute Sonatina and the Six Preludes for piano. Berkeley’s music displays a wide variety of influences, from eighteenth-century Classicism through to the Romanticism of Fauré and Chopin, contemporary French music of the early twentieth century and Britten. Yet these influences are never heard as a ‘patchwork’ – the remarkable individuality of Berkeley’s style attests to the way these influences became amalgamated into a unique compositional approach. Despite his relative obscurity Berkeley received many accolades in later life including a Knighthood and a papal Knighthood of St Gregory. A growing number of recordings of his music demonstrates a continuation of interest in his work and legacy. The booklet contains detailed notes on each of the works on this recording from Douglas Stevens.