Concertino for Strings
MEIRION BOWEN - Roberto Gerhard
In the magazine,Gramophone(December 1999), Arnold Whittall wrote:
It was not long ago that very little of Gerhard's music was known to anyone except a very few scholars, a similarly small number of performers, and the odd person who may have caught one of the rare radio broadcasts of his music. Yet any discussion about his music between seemingly knowledgable people would suggest that Gerhard's music ranked along with the best composed this century. How could people make this statement if they had not heard much, if any, of his music? That this statement remains true, notwithstanding the music's neglect, is testament to Gerhard's clear visionary qualities as a composer.
The last three years have seen a remarkable upsurge of interest in his music: more radio broadcasts, more concerts, and at last, more recordings than one could ever have expected for so "neglected" a composer. All these areas of activity involving Gerhard's have come about primarily due to the work of Meirion Bowen.
Early in the 1990s Meirion Bowen was working to set up performances and recordings, and to prepare new performing editions and scholarly publications on Gerhard's music, often coming up against a pugnacious and conservative "establishment" that refused to acknowledge that here was here a composer worthy of their interest. Recognising the sheer quality of what should be performed, Meirion Bowen sought and found supporters in musicians such as the Kreutzer Quartet. Labels such as METIER, Chandos and Largo took up the cause where possible and at last we have a steady stream of marvellous recordings of wonderful music. To this acknowledged, and continuing end a huge debt of gratitude is owed to Meirion Bowen for all his work in introducing us to music that otherwise would still be unheard.
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