Hiroaki Takenouchi first came across the music of Sterndale Bennett whilst studying at the Royal College of Music, when it was suggested he should learn the Sonata in F minor, Op. 13. Since then, Takenouchi has remained a keen advocate of the composer’s work and was delighted to be asked by the BBC to record several of his pieces. The resulting performances will be broadcast during the course of the coming week, with each programme in the series of five first being aired at 12 noon and then repeated at 6.30pm.
To quote BBC Radio 3: “Reckoned by some as the most distinguished English composer of the Romantic School, Sir William Sterndale Bennett first made a significant name for himself in Germany as a composer and concert pianist. He became close friends with Mendelssohn and Schumann, and once his career started to develop back in England, he rose to become one of the country’s most eminent musicians teaching at Cambridge, Principal of the Royal Academy of Music, and a Director of the Philharmonic Society.”
The pieces Hiroaki performs can be heard on the following days:
The English Hummel – Episode 1 of 5 on Monday 11th April
Butterfly, Op 33 No 5 (30 Preludes and Lessons)
Etude No 6, Op 11
Honoured by Mendelssohn – Episode 3 of 5 on Wednesday 13th April
Two Characteristic Studies, Op 29
Bennett and Moscheles – Episode 4 of 5 on Thursday 14th April
February, WoO 56
Dr Peter Horton discusses the importance of Sterndale Bennett’s piano music, whilst the composer’s great-great-grandson Barry Sterndale Bennett introduces the listener to scores, letters and diaries held at the Bodleian Library.