The reputation of the Anglo-German composer Percy Sherwood (1866-1939) was a victim of the tumults of the 20th century. Born to an English father and a German mother in the cosmopolitan city of Dresden, he achieved an enviable reputation as a composer, pianist and teacher. During a visit to family in the summer of 1914, he was stranded by the outbreak of the First World War. He chose to remain in England thereafter, but, dogged by poor health, he died shortly before the Second World War. Interest in Sherwood has grown in recent years, with the recording of his Second Piano Concerto by Hiroaki Takenouchi and the complete surviving works for cello and piano by Joseph Spooner and David Owen Norris. Both these discs have received extremely warm reviews.


There can perhaps be no better way of marking the 150th anniversary of Sherwood’s birth and cementing his reputation today than by recording the composer’s Double Concerto for Violin and Cello (1907–1908). This work – written at the height of Sherwood’s career in Germany, not long before he was appointed a Royal Professor by the King of Saxony – will appear under the pioneering label EM Records, which has built an enviable reputation for bringing neglected masterpieces to music enthusiasts, with the world-class quality of its musicians and the polish of its production values attracting international acclaim. The soloists will be Rupert Marshall-Luck (violin) and Joseph Spooner (cello); both have garnered reputations for bringing unknown works to light. The orchestra will be the BBC Concert Orchestra, itself famous for supporting rediscovered repertoire, conducted by John Andrews, with whom they have recently recorded a double CD of theatre music by Sir Arthur Sullivan.




Rupert Marshall-Luck will be the soloist in two World Première concerto performances later this month. On 28 May, he will appear alongside the cellist Joseph Spooner and the conductor John Andrews in Sherwood’s Concerto for Violin and Cello (1907–08) with the ESO. Two days later, he will give the first performance of Paul Carr’s Violin Concerto with the Bath Philharmonia, conducted by Jason Thornton. Both concerts form part of The English Music Festival.




Rupert Marshall-Luck appears alongside the baritone Roderick Williams and the pianist David Owen Norris in a double-disc set of works commissioned by The English Music, which will shortly be released by EM Records (EMR CD037–38). The recording includes Paul Carr’s Suddenly it’s Evening, a nocturne for violin and orchestra, and David Matthews’ White Nights; other works include John Pickard’s song-cycle The Burning of the Leaves and David Owen Norris’s Piano Concerto.


The recording, with the BBC Concert Orchestra conducted by Gavin Sutherland, was made in January this year at Watford Colosseum and is scheduled for release later this month.



Two further recordings are currently in preparation: a disc of solo-violin works, including Elgar’s Études caractéristiques alongside Donald Francis Tovey’s Sonata eroica; and the complete works for violin and piano of C. Hubert H. Parry with the pianist Duncan Honeybourne. Both recordings are scheduled for release later in 2016: details will be posted here.