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Born in Cape Town in 1927, John Joubert studied with Howard Ferguson and Alan Bush. He remained in the UK as a lecturer, becoming a full-time composer from 1986.

Joubert’s works are powerful statements, none more than the Third Symphony. He has written eight operas, and the Third Symphony (2014-17) is based on themes from Jane Eyre, reworking the opera’s five orchestral interludes as symphonic movements. Although none of the movements is based on traditional symphonic forms, there is a powerful cogency to Joubert’s writing that underlines its dark-hued intensity. Boughton shapes the surging phrases impeccably; climaxes have a natural inevitability.

Dedicated to and premiered by Eso Elinson, Joubert’s 1958 Piano Concerto unfolds on a large scale, muscular in its outer movements. The orchestra’s role is prominent, with Martin Jones a sure soloist. Rewarding listening.

COLIN CLARKE Read the full review on Agora Classica


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