Thursday, July 31, 2014
Just Opened - August 1, 2014
We are celebrating the anniversary of the 101st birthday of American comoposer Jerome (Jerry) Moross. As with his contemporary & pal, Bernard Hermann, Moross not only famously composed for film (The Golden Apple, The 7 Wonders of the World, and the academy award nominated score for The Big Country), he also composed for the Concert Hall, chamber music and ballet.
Joann Falletta, cond.
London Symphony Orchestra
ISBN # 0 34061 14032 0
3 major orchestral works of the composer best known for his film scores. This particular combination of works play on the lush tune-ful qualities found in his film work. His Symphony No. 1 begins with a big sweeping sound similar to Copeland (the kind of sound used in his score for The Big Country), followed by a skipping, spritely, jazzy 2nd movment that features a piano... almost a piano concerto within a symphony. Moross considered his ballet score for "The Last Judgement" to be one of his best works. It too is infused with a "wide open" bucolic sound, infused at times with more jazzy, urban musical elements. His "Variations on a Waltz" takes the classical theme and variations concept and plays with both style and substance through the variations, and hints at influences of Bernstein. Far from the usual turgid, brooding complexity of many contemporary composers, this is completely accessible modern orchestral music, an easy addition to a music library.
Katarzyna Musial, piano
ISBN# 5 015959 462125
Polish/Canadian pianist Musial has attracted a round of awards, apparently as easily as her shock of bright auburn hair attracts attention to her beauty. It's clear that she is an artist on the rise with a sense of awareness and showmanship. Her provocative "Come Dance With Me" (the cover of which elicited comments from co-workers, "I'll dance with you, baby!") takes the tried-and-true formula of dance inspired works and turns it sideways by the choice of many modern composers like Mompou, Ginastera, Messiaen, Gorecki & Lecuona. A not-for-everyone saucy mix of sometimes inaccessible modern european composers paired alongside the toe-tapping tunefulness of many spanish or spanish-influenced composers. This particular "showcase" CD of a hot young artist shows tremendous polish and flair in a very savvy, technically polished presentation.
Anthony McGill, clarinet
ISBN# 7 35131 91472 7
My Delight of the Week. McGill, principal clarinetist with the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra joins the Pacifica Quartet after they have completed their cycle of recordings of Shostakovitch with this change-of-pace that will be very welcome to many. Both Mozart and Brahms had a particular genius for the blending of the clarinet with strings, and these solid, traditional works are the perfect way for Pacifica to reach out - for the first time - to include a soloist of McGill's talent.
Join us again next week for more new releases, Just Opened.
Kara Dahl Russell
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