WGBH Radio WGBH Radio theclassicalstation.org

Brass Trios - Ewazen, Plog, Hovhaness / University Of Maryland Brass Trio

Ewazen / Plog / Hovhaness / Univ Maryland Brass
Release Date: 10/12/2010 
Label:  Albany Records   Catalog #: 1222   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Eric EwazenLauren BernofskyAnthony PlogVáclav Nelhybel,   ... 
Performer:  Gregory MillerChris GekkerMatthew Guilford
Orchestra/Ensemble:  University Of Maryland Brass Trio
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
In Stock: Usually ships in 24 hours.  
On sale! $19.98
CD:  $16.99
In Stock



Notes and Editorial Reviews



BRASS TRIOS U Maryland Br Tr ALBANY 1222 (66:12)


BERNOFSKY Brass Trio. EWAZEN A Philharmonic Fanfare. HOVHANESS 3 Fantasies. NELHYBEL Trio. PLOG Trio. SAMPSON Duncan Trio Read more


This anthology of brass trios (trumpet/flugelhorn, horn, trombone) is a delightful compilation of ingratiating works, exquisitely performed by Chris Gekker, Gregory Miller, and Matthew Guilford, all members of the faculty of the University of Maryland. It would be difficult to imagine brass ensemble playing any cleaner than what we are offered here. The variety of styles of the several composers herein also makes for a nice contrast; there is not a weak piece in the lot.


The CD opens with A Philharmonic Fanfare by Eric Ewazen, a composer well-known to aficionados of band music. The present fanfare skillfully weaves the three voices together in a pleasing texture. This fanfare strikes me as more evocative than assertive, and contains a good deal of rhythmic variety.


Lauren Bernofsky (b.1967) resides in Bloomington, Indiana (also the home of this reviewer), and has had a number of works performed here and around the world. She works in a wide variety of media, from choral to brass choir to string ensemble. All of her works evidence a craftsmanship of the highest order, and the present trio is no exception. Two lively outer movements frame a meditative middle movement, the singing melodic line of which hints at Bernofsky’s interest in the voice. The rather Stravinskian opening uses imaginative sonorities that often produce an effect of more than three players being involved. The final movement skillfully employs the interplay of repeated notes among the members of the trio. This trio is a major addition to the brass literature.


The five-movement trio by Anthony Plog (b. 1947) is probably the most chromatically conceived work in this recital, but it demonstrates considerable skill in its interweaving of the three instruments, and contains nice contrasts between its movements. Substituting the flugelhorn for the trumpet throughout, Plog thereby evokes a darker sonority, and the blend of the three instruments he achieves is quite remarkable.


Another name ubiquitous in the band world is that of Vaclav Nelhybel. His playful trio, shot through with humorous touches, will delight any auditor. Nelhybel was clearly as at home in chamber music as he was in works for larger ensembles.


Alan Hovhaness’s Three Fantasies will immediately be recognizable as his to anyone familiar with his music, containing as it does the same non-Western modal flavor and flowing lines that characterize his oeuvre. Although much of his music strikes me as boringly similar, this work does not impress me that way in the least.


The Duncan Trio of David Sampson (b. 1951) is named for its dedicatee, having been commissioned by his sister for his 50th birthday. It opens with gentle, modally sustained counterpoint that soon breaks into a vigorous rhythmic episode. In the second movement, “Solemn Hymn,” Sampson substitutes the darker flugelhorn, giving the movement a reverential tone. The lively final movement has something of the flavor of Aaron Copland to it, even though it is spoken with Sampson’s own distinctive musical language.


There is simply nothing not to like about this CD—the recorded sound gives the brass real presence, and the appeal here certainly extends beyond the brass community. Definitely recommended.


FANFARE: David DeBoor Canfield
Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
A Philharmonic Fanfare by Eric Ewazen
Performer:  Gregory Miller (French Horn), Chris Gekker (Trumpet), Matthew Guilford (Trombone)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  University Of Maryland Brass Trio
2.
Trio for Brass by Lauren Bernofsky
Performer:  Chris Gekker (Trumpet), Gregory Miller (French Horn), Matthew Guilford (Trombone)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  University Of Maryland Brass Trio
3.
Trio for Brass by Anthony Plog
Performer:  Chris Gekker (Trumpet), Gregory Miller (French Horn), Matthew Guilford (Trombone)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  University Of Maryland Brass Trio
4.
Trio for Brass by Václav Nelhybel
Performer:  Chris Gekker (Trumpet), Gregory Miller (French Horn), Matthew Guilford (Trombone)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  University Of Maryland Brass Trio
5.
Fantasies (3) for Brass, Op. 70 by Alan Hovhaness
Performer:  Chris Gekker (Trumpet), Gregory Miller (French Horn), Matthew Guilford (Trombone)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  University Of Maryland Brass Trio
6.
Duncan Trio by David Sampson
Performer:  Chris Gekker (Trumpet), Gregory Miller (French Horn), Matthew Guilford (Trombone)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  University Of Maryland Brass Trio

Customer Reviews

Be the first to review this title
Review This Title
Review This Title Share on Facebook




YOU MUST BE A SUBSCRIBER TO LISTEN - TRY IT FREE!
Listen to all your favorite classical music for only $20/month.
Sign up for your monthly subscription service and get unlimited access to the most comprehensive digital catalog of classical music in the world - new releases. bestsellers, advanced releases and more.
Aleady a subscriber? Sign In