Friday, June 26, 2015
Just Opened - June 26, 2015
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A high energy, brassy sassy mashup of the Gershwin songbook won the Tony Award for best orchestration this year, and the production won 3 other technical awards, and that kickstarted our music today on Just Opened. The rarely performed, and much less rarely recorded etudes of (salon era favorite) Moszkowski are a sparkling highlight, with the luscious clarinet "songs" performed by Seunghee Lee and a true chamber mix performance headed by guitarist Marc Regnier.
Original Broadway Cast Recording
Winner of 4 Tony Awards, including Orchestrations
MASTERWORKS BROADWAY 09114
ISBN# 8 8875 091142 1
Playbill site for CD, reviews and more
A musical based somewhat on the beloved film "An American In Paris" that was based on the orchestral work by George Gershwin. Broadway musicals reflect what is going on in commercial music, and the mash- up scene leaves it's mark in an inventive score that includes beloved songs with bits and pieces of other beloved songs from the Gershwin songbook. As much of the story is set in a nightclub, the orchestrations have the brassy, jazzy feel of film noir club scenes. The show has a lot going on - the story being told over the music at times, a stage full of characters, and the music reflects this mix in ways that are very fresh for a story and setting of the 1940s.
Esther Budiardjo, piano
ISBN# 7 81988 00362 6
For more information
My Delight of the Week! It is rare to hear the etudes of Moritz Moszkowski played at all, much less played with excellence, and here we have the complete Book 1 & Book 2. Known best for his popular salon works, many of the Book 2 works stand alone as lovely evocative pieces. Brahm's Hungarian Dances start off the program of wide ranging emotion, exquisite technique and lush salon-era lyricism.
Seunghee Lee, clarinet
Arlene Schrut, piano
SUMMIT RECORDS 276
ISBN# 0 99402 27692 2
Speaking of lush - the buttery "vocals" of Lee's clarinet leave us breathless for more. This CD features engaging works of enduring popularity. Fantasies on Verdi's operatic themes topped sales charts in the Romantic era, and they have remained favorites, and here they are simply excellent. While these fantasies were "pop" works, they are showpieces of technique and color. The major work on the CD is Schubert's "Sonata Arpeggione," and the program is rounded out with favorites by Elgar and Rachmaninoff.
Solo and Chamber works
Marc Regnier, guitar
REFERENCE RECORDINGS 714
ISBN# 0 30911 17142 1
Regnier's official site
Gift-Giver's Delight! This CD plays like a truly collaborative Chamber performance, led by Grammy nominated, Peabody Conservatory grad. Regnier. The 4 artists on this CD take turns in solo works and a variety of pairings of accessible works, mostly with a latin rhythm - composers like Assad, Villa-Lobos, Almeida, Powell, and more. This CD was on air when our on-air host volunteer walked in, and he immediately said, "Isn't this wonderful!" We know that not everyone on our gift lists love classical music... and CDs like this make it easy to introduce "non-classical" folks to great works of international composers in melodic, toe-tapping cross-over pieces.
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Kara Dahl Russell
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