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First Review/McGowan: Erik Satie – his words, his music, your ears

With a little under 3 weeks to go until ‘Un Hommage à Erik’ is released, I have just been sent the first review, and am pleased to say it is very positive.

Lewis J. Whittington reviewed the album for ConcertoNet.com. Here are some of the lovely comments he made:

“Composer Richard Fowles wanted to commemorate Erik Satie’s 150th birthday, and he has done so with musical relevance and magic by collaborating with pianist Christina McMaster in Un hommage à Erik. Because Satie’s music is so famous now, Fowles explains he wanted to honor the Frenchman in a unique way. Thus, he composed a series of piano works inspired by Satie’s life and aesthetics that deftly avoid pitfalls of imitation, stylization and reverence.”

“This is a musically hypnotic project by Fowles and McMaster, and it completely lives up to Fowles’ intentions by honoring Satie’s distinctive sound.”

I was also very pleased to see that Whittington regularly alluded to Christina’s wonderful playing. I completely agree with him; her playing does indeed have an “unnameable mystique” which adds so much to the music.

At the end of the review he comments on the “warm acoustical quality” of the recordings created by Speakman Sound. They are great friends of mine and complete professionals. I am very happy to see their great work being recognised.

I would like to say thank you to Lewis J. Whittington and ConcertoNet.com for such a kind review. You can read it here – http://www.concertonet.com/scripts/cd.php?ID_cd=3690

In other Satie-related news, I was fortunate enough to attend a performance of Alistair McGowan’s new show, “Erik Satie: his words, his music, your ears” the other night in the very church that Satie’s parents got married in. What a great show! As well as McGowan playing the part of Satie, music was provided by the pianist Daniel Turner and McGowan’s wife, the opera singer Charlotte Page. I think what I found so satisfying about it, beyond the fact that it was very entertaining and expertly performed, was that it was clearly a labour of love for McGowan and his enthusiasm for the subject matter really came through in the performance. I strongly recommend going to see it!

For more information on the show, please see this excellent review by the Cross-Eyed Pianist – https://crosseyedpianist.com/2016/03/15/erik-satie-lives-for-one-night-only-in-barnes/