ANTÓNIO VICTORINO D'ALMEIDA (b.1940): Symphony No. 2, Op. 114 (Festival Symphony Orchestra; Yuan Fang), Concertino for Orchestra, Op. 111 (Portuguese Symphony Orchestra; Álvaro Cassuto).
Catalogue Number: 06L010
Reference: NUM 1191
Description: D'Almeida's second symphony is a thoroughly likable tonal piece, a bustling compendium of early 20th-century styles with perhaps an emphasis on French influences and more than a hint of early Stravinsky, though the net of pastiche, or parody, is cast wide enough to contain some very Gershwinesque gestures as well, to say nothing of the even more vernacular vocabulary of Hollywood. The whole is cast in a conventional four-movement symphonic form that lends structural coherence to what might otherwise be an amusing diversion. There seems to be some satirical intent also in the sprightly Concertino, which displays many of the same influences, with the flavor of Broadway rather stronger, and with orchestral effects and episodes of contrasting character that suggest music for the stage - a ballet perhaps? - though the notes make no reference to any such origin for the music. In any case, both works are immensely approachable and enjoyable.