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Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Winged Creatures and Other Works for Flute, Clarinet and Orchestra, Demarre & Anthony McGill, Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra, Allen Tinkham

Today there is an interesting program of two World Premier Recordings of concerted works for flute, clarinet and orchestra plus two earlier gems for same. Winged Creatures (Cedille 90000 187) features the excellent flute and clarinet duo of Demarre and Anthony McGill with the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Allen Tinkham.

The music is well played in all instances and gives us much to absorb. The ultra-Contemporary end pieces, both premieres, work very nicely against the contrasting inner works on the program, namely the Franz Danzi Classicism of the "Sinfonia Concertante for Flute, Clarinet and Orchestra, Op. 41" and the Romanticism combined with the attractive folk energy of Saint-Saens brief "Tarantelle, Op. 6." Both retain plenty of interest and bring a refreshing change of pace that thrive in their enthusiastic performances.

Michael Abels' "Winged Creatures" has a nicely panoramic depictive-tonal Modern thrust that sets off the wind duo within a well imagined orchestral carpet.

And too Joel Puckett's "Concerto Duo" rings forth with an initially somewhat Jazz-tinged aura and then gives us a good, similarly depictive-tonal Modernity for listeners to immerse themselves in.

The Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra are impressive for their age. The McGill brothers charge forward with a dynamic and indefatigable zest that is captivating and even exciting to hear. It is one of those couplings where everything works together, that matches up well with performers and compositions that fit together in absorbing ways. The new works are mainstream Modern and well crafted, nicely wrought.

Definitely recommended.

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