Piers Lane (piano), BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Martyn Brabbins (conductor)
Parry was indebted to the grand Romantic tradition of the late nineteenth century, and his colourful and exuberant concerto probably lays claim to be the first British piece written in such a style worthy of comparison with contemporary continental models. It is a virtuoso work, extrovertly conceived for piano and undoubtedly written for the technical proficiency of Edward Dannreuther, one of the most important exponents of the grand concerto style in London during the 1870s and 1880s.
Stanford deliberately set out for his concerto to be ‘of a bright and butterfly nature’ to contrast with the usual epic tradition of the late nineteenth century. Much to the composer’s regret, the concerto was never published even though, as this recording bears out, it testifies to all that is distinctive, eloquent and craftsmanly in Stanford’s instrumental work. Having languished unperformed for a hundred years, these two concertos are here recorded for the first time.