Cello Sonata no. 1 in D Minor, op. 24
Cello Sonata no. 2 in C major, op. 29
Cello Sonata no. 3 in A minor, op. 44
Coke Cello Sonatas
MusicWeb International, Stephen Greenbank
Recording of the month, July 2015
It’s fascinating to read about Simon Callaghan’s ‘unearthing’ of the music of the Derbyshire composer, Roger Sacheverell Coke. He was given a score of the composer’s 24 Preludes by a fellow pianist. Initially off-put by the meticulous detail contained therein, his perseverance won the day and there was no turning back. With echoes of Scriabin, Bax and Rachmaninov, the music struck a chord, and Callaghan became a man with a mission. With not much to go on apart from an entry in Grove (1955 Edition), he decided to research the life of this enigmatic composer. The Coke-Steel Archive at Chesterfield Library and the British Library proved valuable resources, the latter offering a late 1940s recording of Coke himself playing and discussing his music. Finally, Callaghan approached Somm and the 24 Preludes (1938-41) were recorded last year, coupled with the 15 Variations, Op. 37 from 1939.
The first time that someone has written something major on composer Roger Sacheverell Coke since the 1990s: I chat to pianist Simon Callaghan about his forthcoming disc and his academic research into the neglected composer.
Somm Recordings, SOMMCD 0622-2