Saturday, November 12, 2005

Duckworth, Redux

A busy several days has passed and yet more will come to pass, all of which has (and will) cut into my blogging time. I'm working on an orchestration project that is not a particularly large piece (about six minutes, for orchestra with double-winds) but is time-consuming nonetheless, especially for someone of my plodding methodologies. And I'm trying to get my homework correction backlog done for my theory students.

Anyway, last weekend my wife conducted a fine recital consisting of two selections from William Duckworth's 'Southern Harmony' cycle of choral works—"Bozrah" and "Turtle-Dove," plus Bach's Cantata 79. I enjoyed the Bach a lot, which featured very good soloists and a fine orchestra. It's one of Bach's "Reformation Cantatas," and is on the short side, around 20 minutes. The chorus, mostly grad singers from UMKC, sounded excellent as well. The highlight of the concert was (for me), the two pieces by William Duckworth. I've written in an earlier posting about his 'Time-Curve Preludes' (see "A Minimalist Masterpiece"), and this choral cycle is just as good. I would have liked to have heard a larger set (at least four or five pieces), as two pieces was just not enough to convey the richness of this work. The chorus sounded absolutely superb on the opening of "Bozrah," but lost some confidence when the material went into its multi-layered section. Overall, this choir sounded significantly better than the group that recorded 'Southern Harmony' a few years ago (Lovely Music LCD 4033), and I hope Michelle can do more with this music at some point. It was a thrill to hear it performed live.

1 comment:

Michelle said...

My fan! ;-)