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Best known as a conductor and composer of choral music, British composer and conductor Ronald Corp now makes his Naxos chamber music début with this disc. The Magginis gave the first performance of Ronald Corp's Second String Quartet at Canterbury Christ Church University on 11th June 2010. In the words of the composer: "The success of the first quartet ('The Bustard', premiered by the Magginis at the Wigmore Hall in February 2008) presented me with two happy outcomes. The first was the realisation that I could express myself effectively in non-vocal music on a larger scale, and also the enthusiasm of the audience encouraged me straight away to write a 'sister' work".
Corp’s String Quartet No. 1 takes its name from the world’s largest, most stately and regal bird, the bustard, whose soaring flight and dance-like gait are evoked in this fascinating piece. String Quartet No. 2 celebrates a baby boy’s birth with joyful and exuberant music. The composer describes his song-cycle Country Matters as ‘poignant and riotously outrageous’. The soloist here is tenor Mark Wilde.
"The Maggini is colonising British string quartets, and offering seldom-played works at Naxos's budget price. This superbly recorded disc once again places us in its debt.” The Strad
Ronald Corp: String Quartet No. 1, "The Bustard"
II. Mesto semplice
III. Scherzo vivo
IV. Moderato assai - Piu allegro non troppo - Allegro vivace
Ronald Corp: Country Matters
I. I Heard They Were Opening the Zoo
II. Bird Song
III. Pleasures Past
IV. Don't Go Into The Kitchen
V. Something Sad
VI. Come Into The Garden
VII. City of Wells
Ronald Corp: String Quartet No. 2
III. Moderato mesto
IV. Allegro vivo
“[Country Matters] are set with brio, to a deftly fashioned quartet accompaniment, in a style mixing Facade-style Waltonian Sprechgesang with melodic writing. Mark Wilde and the Maggini Quartet show exemplary enthusiasm.”
6th March 2011
“The First Quartet, which draws its inspiration from the character and habitat of that noble bird the bustard, is, like its companion piece, well made and securely in an English tradition voiced with supple energy.”