Winds Of Change

Composer(s): Vincent Persichetti, Hale Smith, Robert Russell Bennett, Henry Brant, Ross Lee Finney
Album Title: Winds Of Change 
Cat. No.: 80211
Genre: Classical
Description: American Music for Wind Ensemble from the 1950s to the 1970s

The Northwestern University Symphonic Wind Ensemble/John P. Paynter, conductor

A welcome appearance on disc of some of the finest American music for wind ensemble from the 1950s to the 1970s that demonstrates the evolution of the wind band as a vehicle for “serious” composition. The five compositions represent a wide cross-section of styles and composers. Pageant is a prime example of
Vincent Persichetti’s lasting contribution to the genre-a warm, expressive piece written in a rich harmonic idiom. Hale Smith’s Expansions is cut from a decidedly darker cloth-a dark drama of muted colors that makes extensive use of tone clusters. Henry Brant’s Verticals Ascending, inspired by the Rodia Towers in the Watts section of Los Angeles, is scored for two separated bands and illustrates the composer’s trademark “spatial music in temporal polyphony.” The different meters and distinct instrumental character of each band combine to create a colorful and intricate polyphonic web. Ross Lee Finney’s Concerto for Alto Saxophone and Orchestra of Wind Instruments utilizes large and varied forces to sculpt a work that tests the virtuosity of both soloist and ensemble without sacrificing transparency of texture. Robert Russell Bennett, best known as an arranger of Broadway musicals, contibutes the program’s closing work-Symphonic Songs for Band, a three movement suite by turns witty, cheerful, warm, relaxed, high-spirited and always tuneful. 
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