'Philip Grange ... one of the most distinctive minds of his generation ... this is music whose creative instincts are undeniably personal ... Finely prepared performances from Gemini and Ian Mitchell ... Further discs of his music would be welcome.' Gramophone magazine (2006)
Gemini and Grange
Gemini and Grange have worked together for over 25 years, broadcasting, touring, giving 30 performances, recording 2 CDs of his music, both chosen as a Critic's Choice for Disc of the Year in Gramophone magazine.
The ensemble wishes to share with as wide an audience as possible both in the UK and internationally a major development in his compositional approach used in a large-scale chamber work - Shifting Thresholds - written for them to premiere for his 60th birthday.
The disc's title is 'Homage': the new 30-minute sextet 'Shifting Thresholds' is a homage to Samuel Beckett; 'Tiers of Time' for piano quartet is Grange's tribute to his friend and colleague the composer John Casken to mark his retirement from Manchester University; 'Homage to Chagall' is for piano trio and 'Elegy' for solo cello is a homage to the poet Edward Thomas. The disc will be released in late 2019 by Metier, with whom Gemini has recorded 5 previous discs, and which has an excellent marketing strategy within the umbrella organisation Divine Art. The disc will be distributed worldwide by Naxos. It will complement important large scale premieres of Grange's music - a violin concerto for Carolin Widmann and the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra in November 2019, and an opera with libretto by the poet Fiona Sampson scheduled for 2020.
The recording project is basically self-funded and has already raised nearly 80% of the cost, receiving generous financial support from The University of Manchester (where Grange is Professor of Composition), a leading music trust, the Gemini Trust and private donations. However, to ensure the project can be fully realised (particularly in post-production, design, printing, packaging and marketing) a relatively modest additional amount of funding is being sought.