© 2009 London Philharmonic Orchestra Ltd
℗ 2009 London Philharmonic Orchestra Ltd
Double Concerto for Violin & Viola publisher: Oxford University Press. Recorded live at Southbank Centre’s Queen Elizabeth Hall, London, 10 December 2006
Variations on a Theme of Frank Bridge and Les Illuminations
publisher: Boosey & Hawkes Music Publishers Limited. Recorded live at Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall, London, on 23 April 2008.
Total playing time 70:37
Booklet text in English and German
DDD Stereo
Released March 2009

CD: Vladimir Jurowski conducts Britten

LPO conducted by Vladimir Jurowski

Britten Double Concerto for Violin and Viola (edited by Colin Matthews)
Britten Variations on a Theme of Frank Bridge, Op. 10
Britten Les Illuminations, Op. 18

Vladimir Jurowski conductor
Sally Matthews soprano
Pieter Schoeman violin
Alexander Zemtsov viola
London Philharmonic Orchestra
Boris Garlitsky leader (4-24)
Giulio Plotino leader (1-3)
This live recording conducted by the London Philharmonic Orchestra’s highly acclaimed Principal Conductor, Vladimir Jurowski, brings together three of Britten’s early works. Written just before his published Opus 1, the Double Concerto for Violin and Viola was never performed during Britten’s lifetime, but already demonstrates his mature style. The memorable way that the string orchestra depicts different characteristics of Britten’s composition teacher in the Variations on a Theme of Frank Bridge led it to become Britten’s first popular classic. Les Illuminations sets Rimbaud’s poetry in vividly realised musical images, making it the crowning masterpiece of Britten’s early years.
  • £9.99
  • 9.99
1 Audio CD

Listen First


'This neat assemblage of early Britten contains wonderful things. The LPO responds marvellously to Vladimir Jurowski, and the depth of tone and fluency in the Variations on a Theme of Frank Bridge are remarkable for a live recording, while soprano Sally Matthews produces lusciously seductive sounds in the Rimbaud settings of Les Illuminations … The Double Concerto for violin and viola … fares best of the three, parading its slightly brittle anticipations of the later composer with the right mix of youthful brilliance and intimacy.'
Andrew Clements, The Guardian, 27 February 2009

'Pieter Schoeman and Alexander Zemtsov, leader and principal violist of the London Philharmonic Orchestra respectively, give a lithe and nuanced performance of the work, and get the balance between tonal individuality and blend just right … Under Vladimir Jurowski’s perceptive direction, the LPO strings given a robustly characterful account of the Frank Bridge Variations and add plenty of atmosphere to Sally Matthew’s visceral performance of the song cycle Les Illuminations.'
The Strad, June 2009

‘The LPO version [of the Double Concerto] is up close and personal, but this brings across the wiry threads of the solo writing and adds a sharper bite to the strings.’
Ben Hogwood, 'Good Morning Britten' blog, 10 July 2013

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