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Schuller: Of Reminiscences and Reflections
     

Schuller: Of Reminiscences and Reflections

by Gunther Schuller
 
"Of Reminiscences and Reflections," for which Gunther Schuller won the Pulitzer Prize in 1994, is one of his most somber essays for orchestra. A highly personal work incorporating allusions to past experiences -- Schuller suggests that it is, in a sense, his "Enigma Variations" -- it is formally laid out in an austere symphonic scheme. The five movements are connected

Overview

"Of Reminiscences and Reflections," for which Gunther Schuller won the Pulitzer Prize in 1994, is one of his most somber essays for orchestra. A highly personal work incorporating allusions to past experiences -- Schuller suggests that it is, in a sense, his "Enigma Variations" -- it is formally laid out in an austere symphonic scheme. The five movements are connected, though they are clearly distinguished by tempo changes and contrasting material. Schuller's serious purpose is reflected in the work's dark scoring and dense textures, yet the music's stentorian rhetoric and slow harmonic rhythm make the piece seem cumbersome. More appealing in its delicate orchestration and subtler approach, "The Past Is in the Present" is in four movements, again suggesting a symphonic concept, though the overall effect is that of an extended meditation. Both of these works were composed in memory of the composer's late wife. The Radio-Philharmonie Hannover des Norddeutscher Rundfunk, conducted by the composer, produces lovely sounds at softer dynamics, particularly in the woodwinds and strings. The "Organ Concerto" is the liveliest work on the disc, and the contrasts between the spry organ part and the declamatory orchestra are dramatically rendered. Organist James Diaz and the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, led by Mario Bernardi, recorded this work in a live performance.

Product Details

Release Date:
05/30/1995
Label:
New World Records
UPC:
0093228049227
catalogNumber:
80492

Tracks

  1. Of Reminiscences and Reflections for orchestra
  2. The Past is in the Present
  3. Organ Concerto

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