CD review: The Lyrical Euphonium

Martin Smith
Accompanist: Catherine Milledge
MSM Recording: MSM001

The joy of life-long learning and music making underpin this engaging release from a player who returned to higher education and brass banding after a prolonged hiatus.

After 35 years in which he enjoyed pursuing sporting interests, Martin Smith took up the euphonium once more – becoming a Fellow of Trinity College London (FTCL) as well as completing his Masters Degree in Performance at the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama.  


As the performances of the 16 tracks accompanied with splendid musicality by pianist Catherine Milledge show, accomplishment through a balance of determination and ambition are also found in the tailored realism of his musical endeavours.

The familiar recital solo items - from the musical engagement letter from Elgar to his future wife Alice Roberts in ‘Salut D’Amour’ to the ‘Flower Song’ from ‘Carmen’ are played with an intelligent appreciation of style and technique.  

The familiar recital solo items - from the musical engagement letter from Elgar to his future wife Alice Roberts in ‘Salut D’Amour’  to the ‘Flower Song’  from ‘Carmen’  are played with an intelligent appreciation of style and technique.  

Graceful lines

There are also four new compositions and arrangements. 

The graceful lines of ‘Red Kite’  by Rob Wiffin captures the beauty of the bird of prey that has been successfully re-introduced to the hills of mid-Wales (also after a long 35 year plus break), whilst Rodney Newton’s ‘Sarabande’  with its hints of Handel is dedicated to Morfydd Childs, the mother of Martin’s tutor Dr Robert Childs.

Rom Stanko’s fluid take on ‘Deep River’,  made famous by the great Paul Robeson is touchingly evocative and offers contrast to Capuzzi’s ‘Allegro Moderato & Andante Cantabile’  - an elegant piece of Venetian baroque arranged by David Childs and Martin Smith to complete a concerto from a composer referred to as the ‘Orpheus of his Age’ but now long forgotten.

Iwan Fox

To purchase: 

Play list:

1. Salut D'Amour (Elgar trans. R. Childs & N. Childs)
2. Oh Shenandoah (trad. arr. James Stevens)
3. Song of India (Rimsky-Korsakov arr. Eric Wilson)
4. Una Voce Poco Fa (Rossini arr. Rimmer)
5. The Red Kite (Rob Wiffin OBE)
6. Rusalka’s Song to the Moon (Dvorak arr. Eric Wilson)
7. Someone to Watch Over Me (Gershwin arr. Joseph Turrin)
8. Nocturne in Blue and Gold (Cecilia McDowall) 
9. Sarabande from Sonatina (Rodney Newton)
10. Concerto for Double Bass (Capuzzi arr. David Childs & Martin Smith)
i. Allegro Moderato
ii. Andante Cantabile
12. A Little Prayer (Evelyn Glennie arr. Dr. Robert Childs) 
13. Songs of a Wayfarer (Mahler arr. James Curnow)
14. Kashmiri Song (Amy Woodforde-Finden arr/edit Childs/Wilby)
15. Deep River (trad. arr. Rom Stanko)
16. Flower Song from Carmen (Bizet arr. Eric Wilson)

Support us for less than a cup of coffee...

4BR wants to ensure that the brass band movement remains vibrant and relevant. We also want to be able to question, challenge and critically examine those who run and play in it, producing high quality journalism that informs as well as entertains our readers.

So if like us you value a strong, independent perspective on the brass band world - then why not consider becoming a supporter and help make our future and that of a burgeoning brass band movement more secure.

So one less cappuccino then?

Support us    

Grimethorpe Colliery Band - Octagon Theatre Yeovil

Saturday 1 October • The Octagon Theatre. Hendford. Yeovil. Somerset BA20 1UX

Grimethorpe Colliery Band - Albany Theatre Coventry

Sunday 2 October • Albany Road, Coventry CV5 6JQ

Contest: Bolsover Festival of Brass

Sunday 2 October • Heritage High School, Clowne, Chesterfield S43 4QG

Boarshurst Silver Band - Phoenix Brass

Sunday 2 October • Boarshurst Band Club. Greenbridge Lane. Greenfield. Saddleworth OL3 7EW

Regent Hall Concerts - The Countess of Wessex's String Orchestra

Friday 7 October • Regent Hall (The Salvation Army). 275 Oxford Street. London WC1 2 DJ

East London Brass

September 28 • East London Brass is looking for a new principal cornet. We're a friendly and ambitious band and would love to welcome a great player who knows how to lead, inspire and enjoy themselves!

Cheltenham Silver Band

September 28 • Cheltenham Silver Band are looking for a kit player/percussionist. We are a 3rd section contesting band with an exciting programme of performances and contests. We are a friendly and supportive band with a strong academy and regular social events.

Stape Silver Band

September 28 • We are looking for a new Musical Director for our friendly, family oriented band based in Pickering, North Yorkshire. We are looking for an inspiring MD who will help grow, improve and develop the band.

Andrew White

MA(Ed Man), B Ed (Hons), BBCM, ADNCB, PGCE, Cert Ed
Conductor, Arranger, Adjudicator & Educationist


 © 2022 4barsrest.com Ltd