Clarinettist Leslie Craven returns to Music Concepts after his successful release with Stepjan Hauser and Yoko Misumi and recording of the Christopher Ball Clarinet Concerto with a new album of Romantic Clarinet Quintets alongside the Victoria String Quartet. The album features the only recording of Arnold Cooke’s Clarinet Quintet. Leslie Craven, a child prodigy who made his debut with the London Philharmonic at age 11 was the long-standing Principal Clarinetist of Welsh National Opera. Since his retirement, Leslie Craven has also become an instrument maker, and this album features performances on a clarinet of his own making.
“Craven’s eloquent phrasing, as if across the barlines, brings a kind of peripatetic rubato to the playing. Contrapuntal lines in the scherzo, as are Craven’s acrobatic roulades. Well characterised and balanced and not over-pressed, the finale coheres well” —Jonathan Woolf, MusicWeb International