This cameo for solo piano originated as the main theme for the 2nd movement of the Concertante for Piano and Brass Band, composed and premiered in 1966, and dedicated to Sue, his wife to be. In 2020 the composer decided to make a new arrangement of the music for solo piano, specially for an album of his solo piano music released on the Naxos label. After a short introduction the melody is unfolded against a backdrop of arpeggiated chords. A short transition section prefaces a repeat of the melody, this time developing into a majestic climax, before subsiding into silence. The music has a nocturnal feel, reminiscent perhaps of the Nocturnes of Chopin.
Here the lush romanticism and expansive harmonies with light-bluesy touches lend the piece the cinematic colours of Maurice Jarre’s best scores, or even (the later) John Barry.
Pianodao, October 2020
….nocturne-like in style, and imbued with some lovely little modal touches in the melodic line. The music becomes more passionate, before falling back into the gentle lyricism of the opening.
Philip R Buttall, MusicWeb International, October 2020
The music is warm and affectionate with, unless my ears deceive me, an occasional touch of Blues in the harmonies.
John Quinn, MusicWeb International, March 2021
The composer’s first attempt at concerto-writing was a Concertante for Piano and Brass Band. It was, in fact, an engagement present for his wife-to-be, where Gregson has fashioned the main theme from the slow movement into yet another enchanting little number, nocturne-like in style, and imbued with some lovely little modal touches in the melodic line. The music becomes more passionate, before falling back into the gentle lyricism of the opening. If wife-to-be Sue had any slight reservation about her forthcoming marriage, Gregson’s wonderfully persuasive rendition here would have induced a great sense of reassuring euphoria, as indeed, it still does, when hearing it for the first time some 55 years down the road.
Music Web International