World Premiere of The Butterfly's Ball
WORLD-FAMOUS COMPOSER AND HIS NORMØRE WORK
[Translation and paraphrase of the review by Toril Meisingset in Tidens Krav of the recital by organist Andrew Paul Holman in the Tingvoll Church, Norway, on 6 August 2005]
Featured in this concert was a work by Daniel Pinkham, which had its European premiere on 3 August in Kristiansand. Pinkham showed himself to be a lovable and dynamic man and spoke to the audience about his work in flawless Norwegian. Impressive.
His Partita was based on a folk tune from Normøre. The movements were, in turn, thrillingly sonorous, melancholy and joking. It concluded with the roar of the full organ.
PINKHAM: Inaugural Marches, Brass Quintet, Psalms, The Salutation of Gabriel, Solemnities, Dragons and Deeps, Morning Music
Huntington Brass Quintet: Mark Emery, Tom Cupples, Alberto Suarez, Bron Wright, Randall Montgomery with Abbey Hallberg Siegfried organ
ARSIS Audio CD143
Colourful and heartfelt explorations of music that joins brass and organ
Daniel Pinkham’s journey with brass instruments and organ on this disk reveals both his sacred and secular proclivities. The programme has enormous dignity, but also touches of humor and humanity that keep the listener deeply attached to the diverse narratives. What’s more, Pinkham is an equal-opportunity composer of brass music: along with quintets he explores each instrument in a solo capacity with organ, the instrument to which he long has brought distinction as a performer.
The jaunty side of Pinkham the composer is evident in the Inaugural Marches he wrote in tribute to several colleagues. These are smart, economical; pieces for brass quintet stamped with plenty of rhythmic verve and sonic splendor. His Morning Music pays homage to Hindemith’s eponymously titled Morgenmusik in five movements of vibrant stateliness and revelry, and the Brass Quintet (1983) is a keen study of textures colors and sonic gestures that any such ensemble would be happy to embrace.
For his solo brass pieces with organ, the composer drew inspiration from biblical quotes. Each work places the king of instruments in mystical and often flamboyant conversation with trumpet, horn, trombone or tuba. In Dragons and Deeps, the lowest brass instruments slithers in a subterranean voice that sounds like Fafner awakening from his slumber.
Energy, introspection, harmonic richness and spatial inventiveness mark all of the music on this beautifully engineered disk, which was recorded in the majestic Trinity Lutheran Church in Worcester, Mass. The members of the Huntington Brass Quintet and Abbey Hallberg Siegfried (what an apt surname for the encounter with Fafner1) play Pinkham’s multi-hued and heartfelt music with bountiful refinement, virtuosity and collegial gusto.
The Gramophone, May 2005
ARSIS Audio SACD402
[A Recital} Played on the CB Fisk organ at King’s Chapel, Boston, MA
From a roar to a whisper, a fine workout for a choice Boston instrument.
....Christensen is as alert to coloration as he is to expressive contrast. In Daniel Pinkham’ A Flourish, a Vision and a Commandment he deftly illuminates the score’s harmonic pungency, mysticism and vibrancy.
The Gramophone, May 2005
Recent performance of Sergey Schepkin's piano recital in Jordan Hall of the New England Conservatory 16 April 2005. On 18 April, Richard Dyer wrote in the Boston Globe “Schepkin’s virtuosity is clear and colorful.” Commenting on the premieres he said, “Old master Daniel Pinkham and Alan Fletcher responded [to the commissions] in a luscious style based on the French keyboard masters of the early 20th century. Pinkham’s Blue Blazes is like light passing through a cobalt bottle that contains a message.”
Three Spiritual Madrigals by Daniel Pinkham, English text, ECS No. 5992, SATB a cappella.
These three fine madrigals set to texts by Gerard Manley Hopkins, display Pinkham's agile compositional style, where any harmonic and intervalic relationship is possible. The piece moves from challenging, tight harmonies to simple unison passages of great poignancy. This great American composer, now in his early 80's, still has much to offer our ears and our hearts. He continually explores, hears, and then composes his music in broad strokes. His knowledge of how to set texts in a brilliant and profound fashion is always eye opening. His voice is contemporary and always changing, speaking to the very soul of all of us.
The Choral Journal reviews The Covenant Motets. More...
Reviews of recent premieres
premiere of A Spectacle of Glory
22 November 2003
Read two reviews
Premiere Amidst the Raindrops
June 21, 2003 saw the premiere of Dan's setting of the children's classic Make Way For Ducklings.
Read Richard Dyer's complete review in the Boston Globe.
Read the T.J. Medrek review in the Boston Herald.
Synopsis of Make Way for Duckings.
And, in case you missed it-
Read the Boston Globe's review of the June 5th performance of Garden Party and The Cask of Amontillado.