Chamber Music 2000 is delighted that its most recent commission – Cheryl Frances-Hoad’s ‘Five Rackets for Trio Relay’ (scored for professional and amateur trio combined) – has been met with wide-spread critical acclaim. See below for quotes and reviews resulting from performances at venues including the Purcell Room, Bridgewater Hall, Menuhin Hall and Howard Assembly Room, Leeds, as well as its release on the Lawson Trio’s debut CD ‘The Long Way Home’ .
‘Composed for double piano trio, with the three joined by instrumentalists from the Junior Royal Academy of Music, the five movements take their titles from Olympic events, translating them into musical gestures – glissandi for the ice-sweeping in curling, Debussyan swirls for sailing, constant changes of tempo for a movement that combines marathon, walking and sprinting. The pianists (four hands at one keyboard) constantly swap positions, and there’s an air of busy fun about the piece. But, typically for Frances-Hoad, it’s her knack of making the simplest ideas seem freshly imagined that is so captivating.’ Andrew Clements, The Guardian (Purcell Room Recital and BBC Radio 3 Broadcast)
‘This was originally written in response to an Olympic commission and relates to the events of 2012 with considerable wit and imagination… Hitting all its diverse targets, ‘Five Rackets for Trio Relay’ managed to be tremendous fun for players (both professional and amateur) and audience alike. Sounding newly minted in its fresh, diverting approach, it deserved, and duly received, a rousing reception. ‘ Paul Conway, Tempo Magazine (Purcell Room: Reeves, Frances-Hoad, Powers)
I’m baffled that Cheryl Frances-Hoad’s witty ‘Five Rackets for Trio Relay’ didn’t win funing for the Cultural Olympiad project: each piece is cleverly tailored to string players of different abilities. It’s fresh and funny. Performance – 5 stars Helen Wallace BBC Music Magazine (March 2013 – Vol. 21 No. 6)