JOBY TALBOT (b.1971): Suite from Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, Fool's Paradise.
Catalogue Number: 02O082
Description: Talbot's ballet score for Alice captures the genteel yet bizarrely eccentric atmosphere of key scenes from the celebrated book in nine lively scenes that illustrate key episodes of the story. Talbot's idiom is tonal, sometimes suggesting a very specifically English vocabulary for this quintessentially English style of fiction, by apparently alluding to the more pastoral end of Vaughan Williams' spectrum, with bitonal and fleetingly dissonant gestures providing tension at key dramatic moments. Lively numbers are propelled by an easy-going mechanistic pulse - 'motoric' is too strong a word; some clockwork mechanism by Heath Robinson would be closer to the mark, with one movement underpinned by a delightfully cheeky tango rhythm. The appearance of the characters is underlined by specific instrumentation within the colorfully orchestrated score. Fools Paradise is an expanded rescoring of a piano trio work written as accompaniment to a silent film. The four movements - also in a strongly tonal idiom - evoke the faded images of a bygone era, with a persistent pulse that gives the piece a slightly obsessive, melancholy feel. Royal Philharmonic Orchestra; Christopher Austin.