SRUL IRVING GLICK (1934-2002): Suites Hébraïques No. 1 for Clarinet and Piano, No. 2 for Clarinet, String Trio and Piano, No. 3 for String Quartet, No. 4 for Saxophone and Piano, No. 5 for Flute, Clarinet, Violin and Cello and No. 6 for Violin and Piano.
Catalogue Number: 09U057
Reference: CMCCD 24817
Description: This is a most attractive set of pieces. The composer's father was a cantor and his brother a clarinettist, and these influences are present throughout these lively and engaging depictions of Jewish life. Many movements bear titles reflecting their origins - there are four 'Cantorial Chants', three stately 'Chassidic Dances' (dance as liturgy), seven movements entitled 'Hora' or 'Wedding Dance' (dance as celebration), spread throughout the suites. The pieces are all very tonal and strongly modal; even the composer's brief flirtation with a (slightly) greater degree of modernity in the 1970s only manifests as some mildly dissonant bell-like ornamentation surrounding the theme in the 'Dirge' from the Second (which bears a resemblance to the 'Bruder Jakob' movement of Mahler's 1st Symphony), and all the melodies are very Jewish, whether traditional, like the Lullaby in the First Suite, or original. A kind of programmatic element becomes stronger as the cycle progesses, with the Third Suite containing joyful dances of King David before the Ark from the Book of Samuel, and the celebration of the Simchat Torah holiday; while the Sixth effectively depicts a Jewish wedding. 2 CDs for the price of 1. Angela Park (piano), Barry Shiffman, Elissa Lee (violins), Sharon Wei (viola), Cameron Crozman (cello), James Campbell (clarinet), Wallace Halladay (sax), Susan Hoeppner (flute).