British music…

Michael Collins: British Clarinet Sonatas

This CD is Volume 1 in a new series of British Clarinet Sonatas, featuring clarinetist Michael Collins in works by Bax, Bliss, Howells, Ireland, and Stanford. He is accompanied by the pianist Michael McHale.

British composer Charles Stanford is perhaps best known for his larger-scale works, such as his symphonies and the Clarinet Concerto, but he also wrote some delightful chamber music. The Clarinet Sonata is an excellent example of the composer’s contributions to chamber music, and the work displays definite hints of Brahms’ style.

This disc also features the sonatas by John Ireland and by Herbert Howells, whose Clarinet Sonata is dedicated to Frederick Thurston. Thurston actually taught many prominent clarinet players, including the soloist on this disc, Michael Collins.

Also on this disc are works by Sir Arthur Bliss and by Sir Arnold Bax

The specific selections are:


  • Clarinet Sonata in B flat (1934)


  • Pastoral for Clarinet and Piano


  • Sonata for clarinet and piano


  • Fantasy Sonata


  • Clarinet Sonata, Op. 129

Performed by Michael Collins (clarinet) & Michael McHale (piano)


Michael Collins gives us some wonderful music, played in a lush, warm and pleasing tone, in a collection that evokes the delight of the British countryside.

Here is a video of French clarinet music: Poulenc’s Clarinet Sonata, with Michael Collins, accompanied by Julien Quentin



Tags: Clarinet chamber music, British composers, Michael Collins, Michael McHale, Herbert Howells, Bax, Bliss, Charles Stanford

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