MICHELE DALL'ONGARO (b.1957): Freddo for Piano Trio and Orchestra, Festschrift for Ensemble, Mise en abyme for Flute, Clarinet, Piano Trio and Percussion, Zero for Flute, Clarinet and Piano Trio, Checkpoint for Chamber Orchestra, La Primavera for Piano and String Orchestra.
Catalogue Number: 05P087
Reference: STR 33964
Description: Surprisingly accessible for a composer with such impeccable modernist credentials, dall'Ongaro's pieces not infrequently suggest or allude to tonal centers, and amid the undeniable complexity enjoy moments of exquisite melodic repose, or lively rhythmic propulsion. Freddo is a triple concerto for the same forces as the Beethoven, which uses the orchestra as a kind of enormous sounding-board for the soloists' material, while developing a strong dramatic thrust. Festschrift is lively, with a humorous touch, while Mise en abyme, while more abstract in texture nonetheless develops a compelling momentum out of extended technique beginnings, revealing a sort of variation form along the way, and ending with a tender, melodic elegy in memory of a colleague. Checkpoint begins in similarly fragmentary fashion, but soon develops into a powerfully dramatic miniature concerto for orchestra, with obsessive figuration in alternating major and minor thirds strongly suggesting triadic harmony (even a warped take on minimalism), and a real sense of dramatic flow. Aldo Orvieto (piano), Carlo Lazari (violin), Carlo Teodoro (cello), Ex Nova Ensemble, Orchestra di Padova e del Veneto; Marco Angius.