I’d go to Budapest for English musicmain
I’m listening to a new Delos recording of the Walton viola concerto, Bax’s Phantasy for viola and orchestra and Vaughan Williams’s viola suite.
The soloist is Hong-Mei Xiao and she plays an English viola made in London in 1790 by Jacob Ford. And pretty good she sounds, too.
But what really catches the ear is the Budapest Symphony Orchestra conducted by Janos Kovacs, playing this fine English stuff as if they’d been born in Berkshire and this was their daily scones and tea.
I guess they record so much film music in Budapest that English pastoral splashes come naturally to their fingers. Still, I cannot remember when I last heard a London orchestra give a more seductive account of our national soundscape.