Maxwell Davies: Symphony No. 3/ Cross Lane Fair (Naxos: 8.572350) (Mark Jordan/ Rob Lea/ BBC Philharmonic Orchestra/ Peter Maxwell Davies)
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Peter Maxwell Davies' s Symphony No. 3
is the product of symmetry and proportion based on the principles of Renaissance architecture. It is also a dynamic and thrilling seascape, one that both invokes medieval chant and summons up the violent buffeting of the waves, and the stirring cliff-face full of nesting birds. The dual inspirations of proportion and the natural world are seamlessly coalesced, and the Symphony
teems with evocative sounds and brooding passages both expansive and time-defying in their beauty. Cross Lane Fair
is a lighter work, scored for Northumbrian pipes, bodhran
(an Irish drum) and chamber orchestra, inspired by the memories of a fairground that Maxwell Davies visited as a child.
Universally acknowledged as one of the foremost composers of our time, Sir Peter Maxwell Davies
has made a significant contribution to musical history through his wide-ranging and prolific output. He lives in the Orkney Islands off the north coast of Scotland, where he writes most of his music.