Sunday, December 12, 2010

Samuel Coleridge-Taylor's 'Christmas Overture' on Naxos (5:53) and Pristine Audio (6:23) CDs

[The Night Before Christmas; Narrated by Stephen Fry; Naxos 8.570331 (69:30)]

On Dec. 7, 2008 AfriClassical posted: “'Christmas Overture' of Samuel Coleridge-Taylor Available on Naxos and Pristine Audio CDs.” We decided to remind our readers of this music, which we find quite enjoyable. Here is what we wrote two years ago:

The little-known Christmas Overture of Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, who is profiled at, is now available on two separate CDs, with substantially different programs, on the Naxos and Pristine Audio labels. We present a brief review of each disc.

Audophile Audition reviews Pristine Audio PAMX005 (67:50):
“The two orchestral pieces are also very finely transferred, a vigorously played overture to Hansel and Gretel, conducted by the great Albert Coates, whose reputation as a fine musician is undiminished, and a rarity, the Christmas Overture by Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, whose all-too-short life makes one think what might have been had he lived longer.” reviews NAXOS 8.570331 (69:30):
“Samuel Coleridge-Taylor is best known for his Hiawatha trilogy, but his Christmas Overture appeared only in 1925 after being arranged by Sydney Baynes, composer of the ‘Destiny Waltz.’ It is a nicely put-together piece, being more than just a pot-pourri of Christmas tunes, but cleverly integrating some famous carols like Hark the herald angels sing and God rest you, merry gentlemen into a pleasantly coherent work. Dominy Clements”

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