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Stephen Hartke - Clarinet Concerto (2003)
Posted By : Piterets | Date : 29 Dec 2021 05:44:14 | Comments : 5

Stephen Hartke - Clarinet Concerto (2003)
Contemporary Classical | NAXOS | 2003 | 59:44 | EAC (FLAC, cue, no log) | Covers | 230 MB
IRIS Chamber Orchestra, Michael Stern, Conductor, Richard Stoltzman, Clarinet

Stephen Hartke's 'Clarinet Concerto' exuberantly reflects West Africa, his New York roots, and the tradition of the Delta blues. Recorded here for the first time, these compositions span the austere beauty of the American Southwest, the imaginary landscape of 'Gradus' in jazz, and a bustling portrait of Los Angeles.

This is a follow-up post to Hartke's piano and chamber music offered here earlier by aliomodo.

Stephen Hartke's Clarinet Concerto (2001) is a fresh and lively modern work that manages to be intellectually stimulating while remaining largely accessible. Subtitled "Landscapes with Blues", the piece comprises three aural snapshots tracing the history of blues from its African origins to the present day. Harkte incorporates authentic African dance rhythms, as well as those of jazz and blues, yet the composer's own style reflects a strong minimalist influence (particularly of the John Adams variety). In the first movement, Senegambia, a repeated five-note bass figure stalks beneath the clarinet's, freewheeling seemingly improvised modulations. Hartke's orchestra maintains persistent and colorful commentary on the proceedings, with intriguing instrumental combinations that at times remind of Stravinsky (note the dancing horn chorales midway into the movement). Delta Nights, with its desolate atmosphere and despairing clarinet musings, suggests the oppressive heat of the deep south, while the heavy, disjointed rhythms of Philamayork vividly portray the big city at work. Throughout, Hartke's writing is vibrant, and stunningly imaginative, as is Richard Stoltzman's stellar playing.

But there's still more to enjoy on this disc. The Rose of the Winds (1998) for string octet forms a respite from the calculated intensity of concerto, soothing as it does with its spare string textures and haunting melodic fragments. Gradüs (1999), with its rough-edged syncopations and layered counterpoint, sparks memories of Steve Reich. Finally, Harkte's Pacific Rim, a much earlier work (1988) is somewhat less cohesive and incisive than the preceding, nonetheless impresses through its novel fusion of eastern and western musical traditions. Michael Stern's performances with the IRIS Chamber Orchestra are remarkable for their high energy and rhythmic precision. Naxos provides an exceptionally vivid recording. You simply must hear the Clarinet Concerto, its bound to be an American classic.

-- Victor Carr, Jr, ClassicsToday.com

Track list:

1. Clarinet Concerto ('Landscapes with Blues'): Senegambia
2. Clarinet Concerto ('Landscapes with Blues'): Delta Nights
3. Clarinet Concerto ('Landscapes with Blues'): Philamayork
4. The Rose of the Winds, for 4 violins, 2 violas & 2 cellos
5. Gradus, for bass clarinet, vibraphone, piano, violin, cello & double bass
6. Pacific Rim, for orchestra

Read more about the CD here.
Read more about Stephen Hartke here.

Download Links:
Part 1
Part 2


3% recovery record is included.

Coming up in early 2010:
Music by Corigliano, Dresher, Harrison, Hovhaness, Sierra, Olsen, Torke, Wolfe, Lang, Pann, Mackey, Daugherty, O'Connor etc.

More contemporary American and European music is available at my blog.
Posted By: Kraehe Date: 29 Dec 2021 06:38:31
Thank you very much for this, and any of the others that you upload. It's great to discover new music, especially for those like me with "wimpish" ears who can't go all-out avant-garde :P
Posted By: Piterets Date: 29 Dec 2021 07:15:01
You are welcome! As you may have noticed my tastes lie somewhere between traditional classical and hard-core avant-garde. :)
Posted By: AltvioolToon Date: 29 Dec 2021 08:32:37
I send you my thanks and best wishes from The Netherlands.
Posted By: crab9 Date: 29 Dec 2021 13:01:29
Good one! Many thanks.
Posted By: arshille Date: 29 Dec 2021 15:27:00
Thank you for posting this recording Piterets - i am looking forward to listening to this modern clarinet concerto as well as the other interesting music you are sharing with the Avax community - Best Wishes for 2010

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