This orchestral score has been excellently transcribed by Ian Lawrence into a complex and entertaining brass quintet arrangement that is suitable for both students and professional players. Review: "The music is quite intricate to play but will provide great enjoyment for ensembles who perform it. The tempo of the piece is fast and the character of the music is very lively, so this work would make a great finale to a brass quintet recital." – Stephen Wick September 1994
Ian Lawrence was educated at Queens' College, Cambridge (MA) and Leeds University (PhD). He has published some 30 books, arrangements, compositions and TV scripts and is now living in Cambridge where he hopes to continue producing arrangements.
Dowland was the most famous composer of his day - he had an international reputation and was famous for the beauty of his songs. The dance numbers here show a complexity way beyond the normal brass consort music of his time. The gentle Semper Dowland, Semper Dolens is one of the most beautiful pieces of the 16th (or indeed any) Century. Arranged by Stephen Wick and suitable for students and professionals.
Written to be light, bright entertainment this work is an interesting, melodic suite with plenty of rhythmic coloration. The four movements are very varied and include a lyrical and soulful horn solo, unusual in this sort of repertoire. For colleges, conservatoires, professionals.
The Planets Suite in Miniature is an attempt to take the listener through Gustav Holst's orchestral masterpiece in less than ten minutes using only five brass instruments. Only five of the seven most famous and recognisable melodies from the original are used, beginning, like the prototype, with Mars. The different movements appear in the same order as Holst wrote, although the rhythmic pattern of Mars reappears on occasion. The piece ends with a clash of interest as the two most well known movements, Mars and Jupiter, compete for the right to finish. The harsh sounds of Mars are heard first before the hymnal Jupiter theme is heard over the driving rhythm of Mars. Jupiter finally triumphs with the piece ending with one final verse of the tune used for the hymn I Vow To Thee My Country. This instantly recognisable arrangement by Thomas Chinery is both challenging and playable, and of a length that will not tire the players too much while at the same time maintaining the essence and power of the original music to ensure interest for both audience and players alike. A recording by the Argento Brass Quintet can be heard on http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hGg1-pcHzrs
This short piece was composed for the 15th anniversary celebrations of the Mainstreet Brass quintet in the U.S.A. It is an ideal opener for a variety of occasions. The work is tonal with some note clusters, providing a contemporary edge to its character, while its style alludes to the French school of writers. Following an expectant and anticipatory opening it builds to the main Allegro middle section of the piece. The work closes with echoing references, over a dominant pedal, to the main theme.