'The first interlude is dreamlike, briefly suspending the progress of Chaconne I; the second recalls the innocent pastoral tradition of the past; and the final interlude is the horrific music of battle'Musical Times (Thomas Hyde), Spring 2003
'A taut and ingeniously worked piece, fastidious in its choice of instrumental timbres, concise and clear-thinking in its manipulation of thematic material'
Daily Telegraph (Geoffrey Norris), 27 July 1990
'It is not hard to see why Chaconne has done so well. Formally it is relatively simple and highly effective: two long sections built up on ground basses, the first flowing into the second via an exquisitely scored scherzo section. Above this essentially repetitive foundation, Matthews creates a musical narrative of great variety and contrast, with a gripping long ascent to a big final climax. But Chaconne offers no easy conclusion: the final string phrases, eerily recalling the initial ground bass, remain open-ended, a question mark'
The Independent (Stephen Johnson), 27 July 1990
'The luminous sounds which begin David Matthews’s Chaconne for orchestra tell us that this will be far from the abstract, neo-Baroque exercise the title might suggest …This is a serious, predominantly meditative piece, in which a restrained, rather private tone is more germane than the characteristically sensuous textures'
The Independent (David Fanning), 11 October 1988
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