Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra & JoAnn Falletta | Built for Buffalo

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Built for Buffalo

by Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra & JoAnn Falletta

Cutting-edge classical music built specifically for the musicians of the BPO by today's top composers, including the first Triple Trombone Concerto by a major composer!
Genre: Classical: Contemporary
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  Song Share Time Download
1. Concierto En Tango for Cello and Orchestra, Op. 111
Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, Roman Mekinulov & JoAnn Falletta
18:54 $1.25
2. Songbook for Solo Violin, Strings, Harp and Percussion: 1. Variation: Calin Og a Stor
Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, JoAnn Falletta & Michael Ludwig
9:38 $1.25
3. Songbook for Solo Violin, Strings, Harp and Percussion: 2. Chaconne: The Praties
Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, Michael Ludwig & JoAnn Falletta
3:47 $1.25
4. Songbook for Solo Violin, Strings, Harp and Percussion: 3. Passacaglia: Look Away
Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, JoAnn Falletta & Michael Ludwig
8:13 $1.25
5. Songbook for Solo Violin, Strings, Harp and Percussion: 4. Variations: Grace
Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, Michael Ludwig & JoAnn Falletta
6:15 $1.25
6. Triple Concerto for Three Trombones and Orchestra: 1. Andante sostenuto; Allegro energico
Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, Jonathan Lombardo, Timothy Smith, JoAnn Falletta & Jeffrey Dee
8:36 $1.25
7. Triple Concerto for Three Trombones and Orchestra: 2. Andante affettuoso
Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, Timothy Smith, Jeffrey Dee, Jonathan Lombardo & JoAnn Falletta
7:43 $1.25
8. Triple Concerto for Three Trombones and Orchestra: 3. Allegro brilliante
Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, Timothy Smith, Jeffrey Dee, Jonathan Lombardo & JoAnn Falletta
8:13 $1.25
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Miguel del Aguila
American composer
born: 1957, Montevideo, Uruguay

Concierto en Tango, Op.110
for Cello and Orchestra

Miguel del Aguila original scores have been recorded by Albany Records and ACA Records in the U.S. and by Sony-Austria and KKM-Vienna in Europe. His numerous honors include Meet the Composer Awards in Los Angeles, first prizes in the United Students of the Americas Competition in New York and the Olympiad of the Arts in California, and first prizes in the AEMUS and Jeunesses Musicales Competitions in Montevideo.
Concierto en Tango was commissioned by the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra for principal cellist Roman Mekinulov. About the piece Mr. Aguila writes:
"In 2012 Roman Mekinulov suggested to me the idea of writing a concerto in tango form that would explore the less classical sound and technique of the cello. I liked this idea, as the cello has the intensity and expressivity of a tango singer and is an excellent medium for such a work.
"While most people associate the Tango idiom with the 1920's Valentino films or the Tango Nuevo of Piazzola, to many of us who grew up in Montevideo or Buenos Aires in the 50's and 60's, the Tango has a very different connotation. It is associated with childhood memories of happy and prosperous times and with happy family gatherings where we as children often just enjoyed watching everyone dance together. In that context, the Tango carries a special nostalgia from that time and place in a society that no longer exists. Those were the times before the economic collapse of the 70's and the horrors of the 'Guerra Sucia' of the military dictatorships that followed. The imagery of these events is portrayed within the music of Concierto en Tango.
"Rather than limiting myself to this style, I also included idioms from earlier Tango styles, including the 19th century Spanish Tango-Habanera, the Brazilian Tango/Maxixe, and the early Milongas of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, in which the African influence was still evident in its syncopations and fast beat. However, Concierto en Tango has a rhythmic complexity beyond any of these dances, and it represents my abstraction of those rhythms as they fuse with my own personal style.
"The harmonic language is very conservative. It relies mainly on major/minor modes and 7th or 9th chordal harmonies, as they are familiar in the traditional Tango. I deliberately tried to avoid a 'classical' sound and especially the overly-romantic, dramatic style of the many concertos from the standard repertoire of the cello.
"The overall form is ABA - fast-slow-fast. The middle, slow section features the traditional cantabile and expressive qualities of the cello while the outer fast sections require an outmost rhythmic precision, bow control and accuracy of intonation in the highest registers of the instrument. Some of these fast sections challenge the performers with constant time signature shifts. At times we can find almost one hundred consecutive bars where each one has a different and irregular time signature. The most used meters are 7/16 + 9/16 + 11/16 + 5/16. Some of these passages are played by a quintet of soloists comprising the cello, violin, double bass, piano and conga drums. Concierto en Tango was written to honor the memory of my brother, Nelson del Aguila (1964-2012)."

Daron Aric Hagen
American composer
born: 4 November 1961, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Songbook for Solo Violin, Strings,
Harp and Percussion
Variations: Calin óg a Stór
Chaconne: The Prairies
Passacaglia: Look Away
Variations: Grace

After revealing a gift for composition at age fifteen, Daron Hagen enrolled at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, where he studied with Leslie Thimmig. Mr. Hagen then worked with Ned Rorem at the Curtis Institute in Philadelphia, during which time his Prayer for Peace was premiered by the Philadelphia Orchestra. Hagen then moved to New York City where he studied with David Diamond, Bernard Rands and Joseph Schwantner at the Juilliard School of Music.
Hagen's output includes three symphonies, concertos, full-scale works for chorus, opera and ballet scores, song cycles, music for band and many chamber works. His music is featured on diverse CD labels, including Arsis, Albany and Klavier. In 2006, Naxos released a CD of Hagen's opera Shining Brow, recorded by the Buffalo Philharmonic under the direction of JoAnn Falletta.
About Songbook, the composer writes:
"Each evening, as part of his bedtime ritual, my wife sings our son folk songs and spirituals. A professional composer and singer, she embroiders the tunes and develops them. Each night through the door, or over the baby monitor, as I tidy up the home we share for the night, I listen in. This to me is a precious manifestation of the musical fabric of our domesticity.
"I have chosen my favorite four tunes and have based this piece on them. The first is Calin óg a Stór, a traditional 16th century Irish air that figures prominently in James Joyce's writings and is (as The Croppy Boy) one of the saddest songs about the Irish uprising of 1798. The second is The Prairies, another Irish ballad - this one about the potato famine of 1740-41 that caused the exodus of so many Irish families abroad. The third is Look Away, Over Yandro, one of the best known and loved Appalachian folk songs. The last is Amazing Grace, a beloved tune that may have originated as a work song sung by 18th century American slaves.
"The first movement consists of nine variations on Croppy Boy; the second movement is a chaconne based on the harmonies that accompany The Prairies. The third is a passacaglia based on the tune of Over Yandro. The finale bookends the work by picking up with a tenth variation of Croppy Boy before overlaying Amazing Grace and the other tunes (the effect is sort of like listening to a composer juggle) atop it one after the other for a sequence of five more variations, ending with one marked "quasi un mbria" (a mbria is an African thumb piano).
"Despite the fact that associations are bound to be made (I wasn't immune) when one delves into the collective musical memory of folk song for inspiration, this isn't a programmatic piece. It is, perhaps, situational. This is the music I hear at the end of every day.
Composed for Michael Ludwig and the Buffalo Philharmonic, the work is dedicated to Michael and JoAnn Falletta."
For reference: a Chaconne and Passacaglia are Spanish or Italian dances from the 16th and 17th centuries, with variations in harmony and melody.

Eric Ewazen
American composer
born: 1954, Cleveland, OH

Triple Concerto for Three Trombones and Orchestra
Andante sostenuto; Allegro energico
Andante affettuoso
Allegro brillante

Eric Ewazen studied with several of America's most distinguished composers including Samuel Adler, Milton Babbitt, Warren Benson, Eugene Kurz, Gunther Schuller and Joseph Swantner. Ewazen completed his undergraduate study at the Eastman School of Music in 1976 and was awarded a DMA from The Juilliard School in 1980. A recipient of numerous prizes and awards, Ewazen's scores have been widely performed at major venues in the United States and abroad, including Tanglewood, Aspen, Caramoor, Saratoga, the Music Academy of the West and the London Royal Academy. His music is widely recorded on diverse labels including Summit Records, CRS, New World, Hyperion and Helicon. Mr. Ewazen has been on the composition faculty at Juilliard since 1980.
About the Triple Concerto, the composer writes:
"The Triple Concerto for Trombones and Orchestra is gratefully dedicated to the Buffalo Philharmonic, under the direction of my dear friend, JoAnn Falletta, who commissioned this large-scaled orchestral work, and to their trombone section, Jonathan Lombardo, Timothy Smith and Jeffrey Dee.
"Having had the wonderful experience of hearing the orchestra's beautiful premiere of my percussion concerto, Songs to the Banks of Ayr in April of 2010, I was thrilled to be able to work with them again!
"Three trombones - what a sound they can possess! The work is in a traditional three movement structure, modeled after the great 19th century concerti: a lively, energetic opening movement, a slow, expressive second movement, and a rip-roaring final movement with a cadenza.
"The music begins with a leisurely paced introduction of lavish, rich harmonies, supporting gently canonic lines in the trombones, as they soar above the orchestra, intertwining gracefully, and joining in close three-part harmony. The introduction quickly leads to a rousing and energetic Sonata-Allegro format. At heart, the movement contains three distinct themes, the first about rhythmic excitement, the second filled with expansive lyrical lines, and a third, final theme which offers traditional fanfares.
"The second movement, Andante affettuoso, is composed In Memoriam to Scott Parkinson, the previous principal trombonist of the orchestra, whom I had the great pleasure of knowing as a Juilliard student, with his cheerful, enthusiastic friendliness and his great musical gifts. When he passed away at such a young age, it was such a shock to his many friends and musical colleagues. But his memory lives on. In fact Jonathan Lombardo sits in the endowed Scott Parkinson Chair. The second movement is all about beauty, beginning with gentle harmonies, lyric lines, and an almost a prayerful statement with the orchestra, followed by the trombones playing music similar to a Bach chorale. A middle section of the piece rises up, with an accumulating, swirling intensity and appassionato gestures almost cry out. But calm returns: gentleness, beauty, acceptance, and enduring beauty.
"The closing movement, Allegro brillante, is a celebration of virtuosity. In the manner of Bach's Brandenburg concertos, the soloists alternate musical material with the orchestra. In this case, the trombones play joyful contrapuntal lines, always tossing the melodies in a three-way game of catch. The game gets faster and faster with sudden switches and turns of harmony and gestures, all leading to a glorious cadenza. A traditional fugue marks the climax of the work, culminating in joyful souvenirs from all three movements as a final curtain call.
"My sincerest thanks to the great musicians of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, to JoAnn, to Jonathan, Tim and Jeff for bringing this music to life."
notes by Edward Yadzinski



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