What a lovely discovery! I had always associated British cello music with the name of Sir Edward Elgar, whose cello concerto I love. After hearing Bridge's "Scherzetto" performed by Julian Lloyd Webber in recital at the Yvonne Arnaud Theatre, Guildford, I decided to look for the piece on CD and I found it here.
This CD contains 4 gems of British cello/piano music all very different, from the witty and fancy Standford's Sonata n 2 to the poignant tone of Bridge's Elegy and the playful notes of his earlier "Scherzetto", a lovely short piece that Julian Lloyd Webber himself discovered amongst a collection of Bridge's manuscripts when studying at the Royal College of Music.
John Ireland's Sonata in G is also a lovely piece, the opening theme, which reappears in the last movement, is very intense, very memorable and so is the slow second movement, which was inspired by a remote spot on the Sussex Downs called the "Devil's Jumps". The booklet included in the CD is very informative!!
People often say the cello repertoire is rather limited, maybe because we often hear the most popular pieces like Saint -Saens's "The Swan" for example, but this CD proves that there are lots of pieces composed for solo cello.
I am now going to order the vol 1 of the British Cello Music and find out more about the lesser known British composers of the early 20th century.