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Goldenthal: Fire Water Paper - A Vietnam Oratorio / Ma, Panagulias, St. Clair

Release Date: 07/22/2014 
Label:  Sony   Catalog #: 56114  
Composer:  Elliot Goldenthal
Performer:  Yo-Yo MaAna PanaguliasJames Maddalena
Conductor:  Carl St. Clair
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Pacific Symphony OrchestraPacific ChoralePacific Chorale Children's Choir,   ... 
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

From the multi-award-winning stage and film composer of Alien 3 and Batman Forever comes a new oratorio. War, terrifying silence, and violent death invite simple statements as well as, hopefully, more complex ones. This work, despite a plethora of interwoven texts, is a direct utterance: a lament, a conjuring of brief images, which rub against each other to evoke not just a surge of emotion but a sense of purgation. The instrumentation and word-setting is not without beauty (especially the Vietnamese flute and snatches of children’s songs); choirs will enjoy performing it. The work is gestural in concept: a cello elegy in the first movement from the splendid Yo-Yo Ma; an unnerving helicopter simulation, a pithy extended scherzo, a diabolic Read more chorus listing Vietnam combat operations, a dose of Mahlerian threnody. Perhaps most effective are two extended solos, setting Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Yusef Komunyakaa, which freshen up the prevailing monodic feel: that for Maddalena in the first part, where a genuine feel for angular chromatic line surfaces; and that for Panagulias merging into duet in the final movement. Here, and at the close, Goldenthal achieves a dramatic cogency not wholly evident elsewhere. If not Psalmus hungaricus or A Child of Our Time, it’s at least related in spirit. A fine choir, and top-notch wind phrasing.

Performance: 5 (out of 5), Sound: 5 (out of 5)

-- Roderic Dunnett, BBC Music Magazine Read less

Works on This Recording

Fire Water Paper "A Vietnam Oratorio" by Elliot Goldenthal
Performer:  Yo-Yo Ma (Cello), Ana Panagulias (Soprano), James Maddalena (Baritone)
Conductor:  Carl St. Clair
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Pacific Symphony Orchestra,  Pacific Chorale,  Pacific Chorale Children's Choir  ... 
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1995; USA 
Length: 65 Minutes 43 Secs. 

Sound Samples

Part I. Offertorium
Part II. Scherzo "giang co" (Tug of War)
Part III. Hymn
Part III. Hymn

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