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PRELUDE SARABANDE AND GIGUE FOR SOLO GUITAR, Paul Gregory plays a concert of works for solo guitar including these three guitar pieces by Howard Blake, St Matthews Church,71 Station Rd, Redhill RH1 1DL 1.00PM

8th October 2020

[Review of a performance of the three guitar pieces played by Paul Gregory in The Chapel Royal, Brighton, Dec.3rd 2019.]

We then heard a masterwork, played by Paul Gregory on guitar. This is  Howard Blake's 'Prelude Sarabande and Gigue' Op 477, a typical guitar triptych. It’s a work from January 1995, again not only memorable but with its teeming invention in the quiet gentle Prelude, the Sarabande slipping quietly into an earworm and then a Gigue as memorable and fine as one of the Five Preludes of Villa-Lobos with its anticipated wrong-footing chords (like Beethoven’s Violin Sonata Op 12/3 with the violin and piano playing catch-up) this characterful works concluded. It really should be standard repertoire It’s the most distinct piece for guitar since Walton’s Five Pieces and Richard Rodney Bennett’s. Gregory is known as a sovereign interpreter, and here he gathered in the work’s expressive range, easy to bloom in this acoustic.

Blake is a masterly composer. This was treasurable.

Published December 4, 2019, Brighton Year-Round, 4/12/2019


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