CHAYA CZERNOWIN (b.1957): The Crescendo Trilogy (The Quiet for Large Orchestra {Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra; Brad Lubman], Zohar Iver for Ensemble and Orchestra [Ensemble Nikel, Bern Symphony Orchestra; Mario Venzago] and Esh for Orchestra with Countertenor [Kai Wessel {countertenor}, Cottbus State Theatre Philharmonic Orchestra; Evan Christ), White Wind Waiting for Guitar and Orchestra (Stephan Schmidt {guitar}, SWR Symphony Orchestra Baden-Baden und Freiburg; François-Xavier Roth), At the Fringe of Our Gaze for Orchestra and Concertino Group (West-Eastern Divan Orchestra; Daniel Barenboim).

Catalogue Number: 11S074

Label: Wergo

Reference: WER 7319 2

Format: CD

Price: $18.98

Description: Czernowin's distinctive idiom depends to a great extent on timbre and texture, and very little on conventional musical resources, so the complex palette of the full orchestra would seem to be the ideal medium for her exploration of the sepulchral, shadowy layers of psychological complexity. Every instrumental resource - microtones, clusters, extended techniques, noise textures - are fully exploited. Counter-intuitive as this may sound, the pieces all have a distinct dramatic contour and direction, despite the unorthodox compositional means employed. The Quiet, 'Blind Radiance' and 'Fire' form what the composer calls The Crescendo Trilogy in which surging dynamic increases in the sonorous magma-flows form a structural process. In Zohar Iver, for instance, the interruption of this process by the intrusion of a sudden, solid pedal note which is then subsumed back into the chaotic texture, is a masterful climactic coup de théâtre. Additionally, all the works feature a soloist or 'concertante' group, playing somewhat more conventionally notated gestures (though notably with a degree of aleatoric freedom), which suggest 'islands of activity in which nature steps back and humanity appears' in the composer's words.

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