Concert on 22nd July 2018

Martin Setchell (Christchurch, NZ)

Martin Setchell
Martin Setchell

Alexandre Guilmant: Grand Choeur in D (alla Handel) Op 18
Louis Vierne: Romance from Symphony No. IV Op. 32
Léon Boëllmann (arr. Choisnel): Ronde française Op. 37
Camille Saint-Saëns: Prelude and Fugue in Eb Op 99 No 3

G. F Handel (arr. Setchell): Overture to the Occasional Oratorio
Edwin Lemare: Andantino in Db
Alfred Hollins: A Trumpet Minuet
Edward Elgar (arr. Sinclair): Pomp and Circumstance March No 4 in G

English-born, New Zealand-based Martin Setchell makes a welcome return to the Albert Hall, where we last heard him in 2005; of the eight composers he is featuring no less than five of them performed in Nottingham. He describes the first half of his recital as ‘A bit of French polish’, starting with Guilmant’s rumbustious nineteenth-century Handel and finishing with an energetic Saint-Saëns prelude and more dignified fugue. In between comes one of Vierne’s tenderest slow movements, from his troubled fourth symphony written on the eve of the first world war, but then the sheer delight of Boëllmann’s Ronde française, an ear-tickling French scherzo based on a “folksy” tune which is given Boëllmann’s ingenious treatment to give non-stop enjoyment throughout.

Martin calls his second half ‘Basically British Bon-bons’ with a substantial bit of patriotic Handel to start, one with a Derby connection since it was inspired by the unsuccessful ambitions of Bonnie Prince Charlie. Elgar’s noble fourth Pomp and Circumstance march is given in the arrangement by G R Sinclair, whose dog Dan and his swimming adventures feature so enjoyably in the Enigma Variations. Edwin Lemare opened the “New City Organ” at the Albert Hall in October 1910 and Alfred Hollins was “discovered” after a recital at the Broad Street Chapel (now Broadway Cinema), so it is highly appropriate to hear from these two great organists. Edwin Lemare’s Andantino in D flat later became a pop song (Moonlight and Roses), while Alfred Hollins’s A Trumpet Minuet provides an outing for the Binns’s loudest stop: the Tuba.

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