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Classical Music Review

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The Palace of the Dreamking and Other Works


Composer: Peter Greve
Label: Navona Records
RRP: £13.99
Release Date: 08 November 2019

A collection of Peter Greve's work has been released via Navona Records. The Palace of the Dreamking and Other Works offers a cross-section through Greve's eclectic and wildly experimental body of compositional work...

This collection opens with 'The Palace of the Dreamking' which is, essentially, program music taken to the 21st Century. I couldn't help but be reminded of John Williams's music when listening to this piece, most notably his score for Star Wars: A New Hope (1977).

The three-part 'Partita' incorporates an 11-person brass ensemble to deliver a moving and complex collection of themes.

'Give us Peace', a seven-part work, is composed for a church organ and choir. It was commissioned for the 100th anniversary of a local Dutch church organ. The end results are unsettling and ethereal.

'Trio', in three parts, is scored for clarinet, violoncello and piano. It was written in memoriam of Greve's good friend's late wife. It's a beautifully melancholic work, while still being celebratory in nature.

'Magic Winter', which is my personal favourite, is a work in three parts. It draws on Scandinavian folklore. The music tells the tale of the fate of a group of trolls trying to survive the grim Arctic winter. It's beautifully uplifting in a Prokofiev style. It also brought to mind Saint-Saëns's The Carnival of the Animals.

The album concludes with a beautifully moving tribute to Francis Poulenc, 'Aria', a work scored for organ and trumpet.

This is an impressive cross section of diverse and engaging music. Greve's ability to get under your skin and deliver memorable and emotional music feels almost effortless.

Track listing:

01 - The Palace of the Dreamking (11:20)
Symphonic poem for large orchestra
New Europe Symphony Orchestra
Peter Greve (conductor)

Partita for 11 Brass Instruments
Zagreb Festival Orchestra Brass Ensemble
Ivan Josip Skender (conductor)
02 - I. Sinfonia (2:42)
03 - II. Canzon per Sonar (Looking back to Giovanni Gabrieli) (2:31)
04 - III. Motu proprio (0:56)

Give us Peace Invocation for organ and mixed choir
Kühn Mixed Choir
Karel Martínek (organ), Marek Vorlíček (conductor)
05 - I. Visions of Peace (organ-solo) (1:29)
06 - II. Incantation (0:51)
07 - III. Joy (1:17)
08 - IV. Monody (1:08)
09 - V. Devastation (1:14)
10 - VI. Despair (Lamento) (0:48)
11 - VII. Reconciliation (1:50)

Trio for clarinet, violoncello and piano
In Memoriam Mary van Veen
Yhasmin Valenzuela (clarinet in A), Leo Eguchi (cello), Karolina Rojahn (piano)
12 - I. Day and Night at Het Bergelt (5:34)
13 - II. Reflection (Passacaglia) (3:49)
14 - III. Dance (3:21)

Magic Winter
Arctic Saga, version for string orchestra
Janácek Philharmonic Orchestra
Anthony Armore (conductor)
15 - I. (5:11)
16 - II. (6:06)
17 - III. (4:32)

18 - Aria pour trompette et orgue (4:54)
À la mémoire de M. Francis Poulenc, “mi-gamin, mi-moine”
Ondřej Jurčeka (trumpet), Karel Martínek (organ)


Darren Rea

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