Flute - Russell Gillespie
Harp - Lauren Scott
This cd is framed by two substantial sonatas for flute and harp; one 20th century, the other 21st century, with dance and folk themes central to all the pieces on this recording.
The Schaposhnikov Sonata was written in 1925 and is a virtuostic showpiece for the flute and harp. The first movement is lyrical and French influenced, the second movement is a charming minuet, and the third movement is a lively folk inspired finale.
The sonata by Andy Scott was written in 2002 for the Arabesque Duo, and is a premier recording of this new piece for flute and harp. This sonata is influenced both by eastern European folk rhythms and jazz harmony. The writing calls for special effects and timbres, including using the harp as a percussion instrument to create rhythmic intensity.
The heart of this cd is the Hamilton Harty "In Ireland". This work dates from 1918 when it was originally composed for flute & piano (and was later adapted by the composer for flute, harp and orchestra). To set the scene, Harty has given the performers a taste of what is to come in one short sentence - "In a Dublin street at dusk two wandering street musicians are playing....."
The Ravel "Habanera", Debussy "La plus que lente" and Faure "Pavanne" are particular favourites of ours, all of them evocative French pieces based upon dances, that we have arranged for the duo. Honneger "Danse de la Chevre" and Salzedo "Chanson Dans la nuit" are pieces for solo flute and solo harp respectively. The Honneger was written in 1932 and portrays a day in the life of a goat! The Salzedo was written in 1927 and is a sultry dance of the night. They are both as fresh and timeless as the day they were written.
"Andy Scott's Sonata for flute and harp might just be a hit in the making. Fueled by concise and skillfully developed rhythmic themes in the outer movements and a wonderfully elegiac melody in the second, this was one of those rare moments when a significant new work strikes gold with both the performers and the audience"
Classical Guitar Magazine
Formed in 1995, Russell Gillespie and Lauren Scott are both freelance musicians based in Cheshire, UK. The duo presents entertaining and varied programmes, delighting audiences with its musical rapport and have released two CDs, including world premiere recordings of works for flute and harp.
After graduating from Trinity College of Music in 1992, Lauren has worked extensively with many of the UKs leading orchestras, most notably the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Royal Scottish National, Halle, City of Birmingham, BBC Scottish and BBC Symphony Orchestras. She has toured, performed and recorded with chamber orchestras such as Northern Sinfonia and Britten Sinfonia. Lauren has played in West End shows and with artists such as Robbie Williams, Katherine Jenkins and José Carreras. Lauren plays in "Duo Mandala" with Alison Stephens (which commissions new works for Mandolin and Harp, and has broadcast on Radio 4 and Classic FM).
Russell Gillespie was born in Ireland and has been living in England since 1974. Having studied flute with Clare Southworth and later with Colin Chambers, he went on to continue his studies at the Royal Academy of Music in London. Russell has performed for many of the world's leading exponents of the flute such as Sir James Galway, Geoffrey Gilbert, Paula Robison, and William Bennett. Russell now enjoys a versatile career performing as a soloist, recitalist and chamber musician throughout the UK, Europe and Asia. Actively involved in music education over the last twenty years, Russell is a highly regarded Educator and runs a thriving teaching practice from his studio based in Cheshire.