BUFFALO, NY – Classical music can now be added to the long and storied list of things built in Buffalo.
The Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra’s newest CD, “Built For Buffalo,” is a collection of three works written by living composers and commissioned by the orchestra. Released on the orchestra’s own Beau Fleuve label, it celebrates recent additions to the solo violin and solo cello repertoire, and highlights the first triple trombone concerto written by a major composer.
The theme of Miguel del Aguila’s “Concierto en Tango” was suggested by the person it was composed for: principal cellist Roman Mekinulov. As former principal cellist of Orquestra Sinfonica do Estado de Sao Paulo in Brazil, Mekinulov performed frequently not only throughout the country, but with most of the major orchestras of Argentina and Peru. The piece premiered at the close of the BPO’s 2013-14 season, and del Aguila himself joined the orchestra to perform the piano part. Incorporating tango styles dating from the mid-1800s to the 1950s, “Concierto en Tango” evokes nostalgia for a bygone Argentina.
Daron Hagen’s Songbook for Solo Violin, Strings, Harp and Percussion premiered in May 2011, with Michael Ludwig performing the solo violin part. Dedicated to Ludwig and BPO Music Director JoAnn Falletta, it was inspired by the folk songs and spirituals that Hagen’s wife sings to their young son. Listeners will detect hints of Irish melodies, folk hymns and Appalachian tunes in the piece. BPO harpist Suzanne Thomas, BPO percussionists Mark Hodges and Dinesh Joseph, and the BPO string sections can also be heard on this recording. Hagen has worked with the BPO on several previous occasions, including the premiere recording of his opera “Shining Brow,” about Frank Lloyd Wright.
Closing out the CD is the highly-anticipated recording of the Triple Concerto for Three Trombones and Orchestra by Eric Ewazen. This piece premiered in November 2012 to much acclaim. Since then, BPO trombonists Jonathan Lombardo, Timothy Smith, and Jeffrey Dee have performed it at the 2013 Eastern Trombone Workshop in Virginia and with the Interlochen World Youth Orchestra in Interlochen, Michigan. They presented a wind band version of the piece at the Midwest Clinic in Chicago, Illinois with the Brooklyn Wind Symphony in December 2013.
“Our commissioning project is a tribute to five of our musicians, and clearly reflects their particular interests and musicianship,” said BPO Music Director JoAnn Falletta, who conducted each piece on the disc. “The orchestra shares with its home city a proud spirit of both innovation and respect for tradition. With pieces that borrow from the folk and classical traditions to create something new, this disc captures perfectly the spirit of Buffalo.”
The CD is $15, and is available at bpo.org or at the Buffalo Philharmonic Box Office in Kleinhans Music Hall, 3 Symphony Circle. The Box Office is open from 9 a.m to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays, and during BPO concerts. The BPO has 31 other CDs for sale. Call (716) 885-5000 for details.
As Buffalo’s cultural ambassador, the Grammy Award-winning Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra under the leadership of music director JoAnn Falletta presents more than 100 concerts each year. Since 1940, the orchestra’s home has been Kleinhans Music Hall, a National Historic Landmark with a reputation as one of the finest concert halls in the United States. During the tenure of JoAnn Falletta, the BPO has rekindled its history of radio broadcasts and recordings, including the release of 32 new recordings on the Naxos and Beau Fleuve labels. For more information about the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, visit www.bpo.org.
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