Ben Foskett: Dinosaur

Ben Foskett: Dinosaur

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This survey of Ben Foskett's work spans 10 years, from the brooding Five Night Pieces for piano (2002) to Cinq Chansons a Hurle-Vent - a deceptively simple setting of poems by French writer Laure Salama, written from the point of view of characters in Wuthering Heights, for soprano and saxophone. Between these come the orchestral From Trumpet, built up from a single rhythmic cell; elegaic On from Four, commissioned for Manchester ensemble Psappha for the 400th anniversary of Hatfield House; Hornet II, a virtuoso showpiece for clarinettist Mark van de Wiel and London Sinfonietta and Dinosaur for solo flute.

This album is part of our Debut Discs series.

Hallé / Nicholas Collon conductor
Mark van de Wiel clarinet
London Sinfonietta / Geoffrey Paterson conductor
Psappha/ Nicholas Kok conductor
Eric Lamb flute
Richard Uttley piano
Raphaele Kennedy soprano
Jean-Francois Becquaert soprano sax



‘The early Five Night Pieces, for piano, played by Richard Uttley, have a lucid modernist assurance, but Foskett’s 2009 Prom commission, the orchestral From Trumpet, is something else again: big, monolithic, broodingly textured, with a rich internal drama.’ The Sunday Times

‘Richard Uttley is persuasive in Five Night Pieces, short piano works at once compressed and violent. […] this CD is a good way in to Foskett’s sound-world.’ The Observer

From Trumpet also offers a glimpse into the discovery and expansion of a composer’s musical imagination, evoking a sense of tremendous musical space through rumbling, atomised lower sonorities overlaid with bright planes of brass sound … Cinq chansons á hurle-vent for soprano and soprano saxophone … it explores the landscape and characters of Wuthering Heights with a mesmerising directness.’ Tempo 69



With thanks to the trusts, foundations and individuals who have invested in NMC’s Debut Discs series:

The Astor Foundation
The Boltini Trust
The John S Cohen Trust
The Fenton Arts Trust
Nicholas and Judith Goodison
Mercers' Charitable Foundation
The Stanley Picker Charitable Trust
The Radcliffe Trust
The Richard Thomas Foundation
RVW Trust
Jennifer Roslyn Wingate

and to the individuals who donated through The Big Give Christmas Challenge December 2011.

NMC is also grateful to The Hinrichsen Foundation for supporting NMC's Halle Series through its New Initiatives programme and to The Zochonis Charitable Trust.


On From Four was recorded in the Cosmo Rodewald Hall, Martin Harris Centre, Manchester University on 21 Oct 2011 and first broadcast by BBC Radio 3 on 7 January 2012 on 'Hear and Now: Psappha @ Manchester University'.

Recording Producer SAM PHILLIPS for BBC Radio 3
Recording Engineer TIM ARCHER for BBC Radio 3

Hornet II and Dinosaur were recorded at All Saints Church, East Finchley, London on 19 September 2013; Cinq Chansons a Hurle-Vent was recorded at the same venue on 21 February 2014. Five Night Pieces was recorded at Menuhin Hall, Yehudi Menuhin School, Cobham, Surrey on 24 January 2014. From Trumpet was recorded at Hallé St Peter’s, Ancoats, Manchester on 29 October 2013.

Recording Engineer/ Producer DAVID LEFEBER

On From Four (P) 2012 BBC
Five Night Pieces, Hornet II, From Trumpet, Dinosaur and Cinq Chansons à Hurle-Vent (P) 2014 NMC Recordings Ltd
© 2014 NMC Recordings Ltd

Catalogue number: NMC D195
Release Date: 23 June 2014