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Four Songs of Catalonia

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    *Contemporary Pieces.* An attractive set of pieces with lots of interest in all parts.

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    _Score 12 pp. Parts 4 pp. Downloadable PDF file - 983 Kb._

    Period/Genre Contemporary
    Composer First Name Lance
    Composer Surname Eccles
    Grade Moderate
    Instrumentation Descant, Treble, Tenor + Bass Recorders

    OMP109 Lance Eccles Four Songs of Catalonia

    Lance Eccles has an enviable talent for spotting unusual yet attractive folk songs and then turning them into simple yet attractive arrangements.  His movements are deceptively straightforward - generally just a series of iterations of the tune, often with a slowly developing accompanying texture - but each is finely judged and very playable.

    The Catalonian songs comprise a spinning girl (who doesn't seem to have her mind on the job, as she spins a very fragmentary thread), some reapers (who appear a little drunk as they keep missing a beat), a thief (whose rather operatic tune seems a little inappropriate for one who follows such a stealthy profession) and a very fast Lady of Aragon (who manages to keep going for a cool 120 bars in spite of suffering the same incapacity as the reapers).

    The music is not technically difficult; there are some rhythmical complexities, but as these tend to occur simultaneously in all parts they do not present a serious problem.

    Greg Lewin, The Recorder Magazine, Autumn 2001

    OMP109 Lance Eccles Four Songs of Catalonia

    These are agreeable arrangements-cum-compositions, and the four Catalonian song melodies chosen have been treated simply and resourcefully in the course of these pieces.

    In No. 3, a lovely Andante movement, the time-signature should be 4/4 rather than 2/2, and the groups of semi-quavers should be slurred together under one tongue. Oddly enough, there are no slurs anywhere in this score, and some may need adding here and there according to taste and players' comfort.

    In No. 4 the movement should end with a da capo of bars 1-13 so as to finish with a tonic chord, rather than finishing with the dominant chord that comes at the end of the piece here.

    The parts lie easily on the instruments, although the treble part is at times pitched rather high for some relatively long passages.

    Gwilym Beechey, The Recorder Magazine, Summer 2004

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