Elgar at the piano
NMC : a Mission to be Heard

Established with the aim of recording the best of contemporary British music to the highest artistic and technical standards, NMC Recordings Ltd was founded in 1988 by the Society for the Promotion of New Music. Following the success of two pilot releases - Jonathan Harvey's Bhakti, and a disc of contemporary piano music performed by Michael Finnissy - NMC became an independent charitable company, set up with substantial funding from the Holst Foundation. Since this time, it has established itself as "Britain's most important producer of CDs of interesting new or recent and neglected work from this country" (The Sunday Times).

NMC's catalogue currently consists of 49 titles, which have been released to considerable critical acclaim - including a Gramophone Award for the best contemporary recording of 1994, for Robin Holloway's Second Concerto for Orchestra (NMC D015M). Composers represented on the Label include James Dillon, Minna Keal, Dominic Muldowney, Howard Skempton, Andrzej Panufnik, Elisabeth Lutyens, Alexander Goehr and Harrison Birtwistle, as well as Gerald Barry, John Woolrich, Barry Guy, Simon Holt, Michael Finnissy and Mark-Anthony Turnage. NMC's biggest success prior to the release of the Elgar/Payne Third Symphony was Sir Harrison Birtwistle's opera The Mask of Orpheus, released to great acclaim in December 1997: the live recording of this ground-breaking work was produced with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, the latest in a continuing series of fruitful collaborations.

While NMC's guiding principle is the recording of music by contemporary British composers, the Archive Series has been established to release earlier recordings of historic interest - such as those of Britten's Les Illuminations and Sinfonia da Requiem made in 1941 (NMC D030). It is in this series that NMC is proud to release Anthony Payne's 'elaboration' of Elgar's Symphony No.3 (NMC D053), left in sketch form on the composer's death in 1934, with a companion recording of the sketches themselves accompanied by a commentary by Anthony Payne on NMC D052. The Symphony is performed by the orchestra which commissioned it in 1932 - the BBC Symphony Orchestra - under its chief conductor Andrew Davis, while the sketches are brought to life by the Orchestra, pianist David Owen Norris and violinist Robert Gibbs.

New releases scheduled for 1998 include Alexander Goehr's Arianna, a 'recomposition' of Monteverdi's lost opera (NMC D054); Jonathan Lloyd's exuberant and eclectic Symphony No.4 (NMC D046M); Martin Butler's colourful orchestral works O Rio and Fixed Doubles (NMC D047M); a disc of works by David Bedford, including the choral Twelve Hours of Sunset (NMC D049); and a disc of Anthony Payne's chamber music (NMC D056), to be released in August 1998, which will include A Day in the Life of a Mayfly (1981). Extracts can be found on NMC's third sampler, A Round-up of NMC (NMC D051), which offers a taste of these and other new releases. Further plans include a disc of chamber music by Michael Finnissy performed by Ixion (NMC D043), and orchestral works by Simon Bainbridge, Brian Elias and Gordon Crosse.

NMC Recordings Ltd,
Francis House,
Francis Street,
London SW1P 1DE,
United Kingdom
Tel: (UK) 0171-828 3432
Fax: (UK) 0171-828 3432
E-mail: [email protected]

Registered Office:
Forsyte Saunders Kerman, 79 New Cavendish Street, London W1M 8AQ
Registered Charity Number: 328052.
Incorporated in England and Wales under Number: 231 4735

Continue to :

The Reconstruction - A Justification by Colin Matthews :
English Deutsch Français
An Introduction by Anthony Payne : English Deutsch Français
A musical tour of the symphony A Guide to Forthcoming Performances
Michael Kennedy reviews the CD Geoff Hodgkins reviews the Première
EP3 - Now on Naxos How to order your copy of the CDs and score

Return to :

A Chronology of Major Works 'Elgar - His Music' Index
Welcome page index An Elgar Diary

Elgar Birthplace
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