Notes and Editorial Reviews
Grammy Award-winning composer Michael Daugherty explores the relationships between machines, humanity and nature in three unique concertos. ‘Dreamachine’ for solo percussion and orchestra is a colorful tribute to the imagination of inventors who dreamed of new machines, both real and surreal. The flute concerto ‘Trail of Tears’ dramatizes the tragic governmental forced relocation of Native Americans in 1838 and meditates on how the human spirit discovers ways to deal with adversity. ‘Reflections on the Mississippi’ for tuba and orchestra is a musical voyage down the legendary Mississippi River from Iowa to Louisiana. The Albany Symphony, conducted by David Alan Miller, delivers mesmerizing performances by three outstanding women soloists: Grammy Award-winning percussionist Dame Evelyn Glennie, flutist extraordinaire Amy Porter, and Carol Jantsch, the remarkable principal tuba of The Philadelphia Orchestra.
The three-movement Trail of Tears for flute and chamber orchestra relates the sadness that followed the relocation of North American Indians in the 1830’s. The first two movements explore the sad qualities the flute can portray, the whirlwind finale a massive technical challenge that will tax any soloist. The four movement Dreamachine is meant to represent the advances humans have made in machinery. It offers the percussion soloist a score of virtuosity with different groups of instruments in each movement. The great joy of the disc is Reflections on the Mississippi, four pictures of the river from Daugherty’s memories of holidays in his youth by the river. From the creamy smooth to the ripe lower notes, the Philadelphia Orchestra’s young tuba player, Carol Jantsch, has everything. The Albany Symphony, with their conductor, David Alan Miller, ably support the group throughout. Soloists are set rather forward, but in excellent overall sound. Highly recommended.
– David’s Review Corner (David's Review Corner)