Peter Fribbins
Dances & Laments
2013 saw the CD release of another new CD, this time featuring the Zong Affair for septet, the duo Dances & Laments for violin and cello, ‘That which echoes in eternity’, the D.H. Lawrence inspired piano trio ‘Softly in the Dusk’, Porphyria’s Lover for flute and piano, and the new Prelude & Fugue on Cromer, recorded on the organ of Brentwood Cathedral.
PETER FRIBBINS (b. 1969) - July 2013 Release
Dances & Laments
The Zong Affair (2011) Turner Ensemble
Dances & Laments (2007-10)
Philippe Graffin (violin) & Henri Demarquette (cello)
I. Lontano
II. Dance in Four
III. Elegy
IV. Air
V. Dance in Three
'…that which echoes in eternity' (1990-2010)
Pál Banda (cello) & Mine Dogantan-Dack (piano)
Porphyria’s Lover (1992-94)
Nancy Ruffer (flute) & Helen Crayford (piano)
I. Adagio drammatico
II. Allegro molto
III. Adagio drammatico
'Softly, in the dusk' (2006-07)
Rosamunde Piano Trio
Chorale Prelude & Fugue on Cromer (2005-11)
Michael Frith (organ)
Prelude: Andante
Fugue: crotchet = c.42
Listen to sound clips Sound clips on GUILD website on the Guild website
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The Moving Finger Writes
May 2012 heralded a new CD release, including the recent Piano Concerto (Brekalo, Šervenikas and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra), String Quartet No.2 ‘After Cromer’, recorded by the Chilingirian Quartet (who commissioned the work in 2005) and the Fantasias for Viola & Piano (performed by duo Sarah-Jane Bradley and Anthony Hewitt).

‘Premiere performances of a modern melodic master. Altogether an illuminating portrait of a composer who deserves to be even better known’
- Gramophone Awards – October 2012, Edward Greenfield

‘This disc presents a nice variety of small- and large-scale works by the British composer Peter Fribbins: a string quartet (performed admirably by the Chilingirian Quartet), a Haydn homage for solo piano, a piano concerto, and a set of two fantasias for viola and piano. Fribbins is a modernist, but one unafraid of expressive immediacy, and the piano concerto in particular owes much to the Romantics. But my favorite piece is the pair of fantasias, one of them based on a Welsh folk tune and the other on a song from Hungary: their stark and astringent melodies and understated intensity are particularly attractive. The performances are all excellent.’ - Rick Anderson, – May 2013
PETER FRIBBINS (b. 1969) - May 2012 Release
The Moving Finger Writes
String Quartet No. 2 ‘After Cromer’ (2005-6)
Chilingirian Quartet
I. Presto. Allegro molto e drammatico
II. Andante
III. Scherzo: Allegro giocoso
IV. Finale: Vivo

A Haydn Prelude (2008)
Anthony Hewitt (piano)

Piano Concerto (2010)
Diana Brekalo (piano)
Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Robertas Šervenikas, conductor
I. Adagio drammatico – Allegro vivo
II. Adagio – Andante – Tempo primo
III. Allegro vivo – Andante – Adagio – Affrettando – Fugato –
Fantasias for Viola and Piano (2007-11)
Sarah-Jane Bradley (viola) - Anthony Hewitt (piano)
I. Fantasia on Bugail Yr Hafod
II. Fantasia on Azt gondoltam eső esik
Listen to sound clips Sound clips on GUILD website on the Guild website
Click the above image to read the sleeve notes (PDF) (2.5MB)
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'I Have the Serpent Brought' was the title for the 2010 Guild CD of Fribbins’s chamber music for strings, which included, as well as the Allegri Quartet String Quartet’s readings of Quartet No.1 and the Clarinet Quintet, the Cello Sonata recorded by Raphael Wallfisch and John York and the Piano Trio (originally commissioned by the Austrian Government and premiered in Vienna in 2004):

‘Too conservative for the neo-modernists and too ambivalent for the photo-fit tonalists among us, Fribbins is a composer with something to say.’ - Richard Whitehouse, International Record Review, 2010

‘…an immensely rewarding collection of chamber music... I sincerely feel Fribbins is a confident, young voice in composition, respectful of past chamber-music style and secure and inventive with tonality. Just the caliber of the artists participating on this recording proves I am not alone in wishing these works gain wider currency… This is an elegantly performed collection of music that can be alternately wistful, savage, respectful of tradition, and yet also playful. If Fribbins is not the most cutting-edge of new composers, then he is certainly the best-informed and one of the bravest to toe the tonal line. A winner, I hope.’ - Barnaby Rayfield: ‘ “Fanfare” Magazine for Serious Record Collectors', 2011

A CD of chamber music for strings by Peter Fribbins has recently been released by Guild (GMCD 7343), featuring the Allegri String Quartet, the Angell Piano Trio, Raphael Wallfisch (cello), John York (piano) and James Campbell (clarinets).

(MUSICAL POINTERS: reviewing Guild CD 'I Have the Serpent Brought')

'a thoughtful composer who eschews the latest fads in favour of solid craftsmanship' Musical Pointers, 2010

‘…an immensely rewarding collection of chamber music’
- Fanfare Magazine

.........Listen to sound clips Sound clips on GUILD website on the Guild website

Music Samples from Peter's Guild CD
'I have the Serpent Brought'

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Primrose Piano Quartet
Peter Fribbins
Variation on a Burns Air - commissioned by the Primrose Piano Quartet

amongs many other work by:
John Casken, Joe Cutler, Sally Beamish, Piers Hellawell, Jacques Cohen, Zoë Martlew, Robin Ireland, Stephen Goss By Yon Castle Wa' Francis Pott and
Sir Peter Maxwell Davies:
Piano Quartet (2007)
Dmitri Smirnov:
Quintet for Piano, Violin, Viola, Violoncello and Double-bass, Op.72 (1992)

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One of my main concerns is musical drama and expressive narrative structures, although not necessarily in a programmatic sense. I have often thought that composers of my generation inherit a rich musical legacy: we are neither constrained to be modernist nor post-modernist, to consistently avoid the diatonically tonal nor exclusively embrace it, but instead a myriad of musical styles of the past are available for plunder in a vast post-modernist palette. Clearly the tonal and harmonic drama of a modulation from tonic to dominant has been largely neutralised over the last 200 years, but another sort of drama can be created by contrasting different techniques. The potential for this is something I have consistently attempted to harness in my music: for instance the wild dissonances in the opening of Porphyria’s Lover are relieved by the warmth of the tonality that immediately follows (literally from the fire in the hearth of Browning’s poem).

No doubt there are plenty of modernist features in my music: however at the same time I am drawn to the sense, logic and formal satisfaction to be gained through traditional structural gestures, shapes and forms.

The pacing of material and the location of certain musical events, sections or aesthetic areas in the musical narrative are an important consideration in my music, and I suppose is an instinctive link with the great music of the past.
Sound File
..................... ....
Trio Van Beethoven
Peter Fribbins - Piano Trio
26 April 2015, Kings Place, London
Peter Fribbins - String Quartet No.1 'I Have the Serpent Brought' (1990-2004)
The Allegri Quartet
26th October 2014, Kings Place, London
Peter Fribbins -- In Xanadu for wind quintet
November 11th 2013, Kings Place, London
The Barbirolli Quartet with Janet Hilton (clarinet) played Peter Fribbins' Quintet on 25th November 2012 for the London Chamber Music Society at Kings Place, London.
Peter Fribbins: 'Softly in the dusk ...' (9min)
The Rosamunde Piano Trio playing at Kings Place, London, on October 30th 2011
in a concert for the London Chamber Music Society.
Martino Tirimo, piano, Ben Sayevich, violin, Daniel Veiss, cello
Peter Fribbins: Dances & Laments for violin & cello duo (UK première).
Premiered at Kings Place on 15 Januar 2012 by Philippe Graffin, violin,
and Henri Demarquette, cello, in a concert for the London Chamber Music Society.
Part 1

Part 2
(Part 1 & Part 2) Mine Dogantan Dack (piano) and Pal Banda (cello)
perform Peter's duo '...that which echoes in eternity' (after lines from Dante’s Divine Comedy)
at Kings Place, London on 15 March 2009.




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