New orchestration of Stanford Concerto receives world premiere

Composer's Violin Concerto No. 2 to be performed at Durham University

A new orchestration of Charles Villiers Stanford’s Violin Concerto No. 2 will receive its world premiere on 2 March in Durham.

Stanford (1852-1924) wrote a version of the work for violin and piano in 1918, but it remained unpublished after his death.

Durham University professor and Stanford expert Jeremy Dibble has orchestrated the work, which will be played in public for the first time by the university chamber orchestra.

'It is a substantial work and completely unknown within the repertoire of British violin concertos,' said Dibble. 'The work is full of rich and memorable tunes, the slow movement in particular reflecting Stanford's Irish heritage with its mimicking of Irish traditional melody. It is also technically demanding for the soloist yet beautifully and idiomatically written for the instrument.'

The premiere is part of a weekend of Stanford events from 2-4 March, which also includes a performance of the rarely heard Concert Piece for Organ, Brass and Strings, and evensong in Newcastle Cathedral.

Mel Spencer