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  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett

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Carter PANN (b.1972)
Piano Concerto (1996-7) [25.05]
Deux séjours (1994) [9.19]
Dance Partita (1995) [18.27]
Two Portraits of Barcelona (1994) [13.16]
Barry Snyder (piano)
Czech State Philharmonic, Brno/José Serebrier
rec. 24-26 Mar 1999, Stadion, Brno, Czech Republic
NAXOS AMERICAN CLASSICS 8.559043 [66.31]


Gerard Hoffnung CDs

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Pann is a graduate of the Eastman where he studied with Samuel Adler and Joseph Schwantner. He also has a Masters from Michigan University achieved under Bolcom, Albright and Sheng.

This disc seems to have taken a very long time to emerge - eighteen months since the first mention - but here it is at last.

The Piano Concerto is in five drastically variegated movements which the composer confesses are more in the nature of a suite. The five episodes feature music the composer came to admire as he grew up. Piña Colada sounds like a boozy latino serenade most often recalling Malcolm Arnold in his uproarious and poetic Concerto for Phyllis and Cyril. The Ravelian Nocturne makes way for the somnolent Your Touch written as if for an exhausted lounge bar pianist. The Gershwinny Blues is over in an instant and then comes a seven minute shindig pot-pourri of magnified and sometimes distorted Mozart, Prokofiev and Beethoven. Strictly for fun it ends with the equivalent of a wink.

The warm and drowsily shimmering Deux Séjours were each intended to follow on the style of Debussy's orchestrations of the Satie Gymnopédies mixed with Ravel's Pavane. They portray Fontevielle, Provence and Portofino, Italy. The pictorial aspect continues into the other gazetteer diptych on this disc: the Barcelona Portraits. The first is fairly avant-garde and in its melting and buzzing suggests the fantastic shapes of Gaudi's modern Gothic cathedral. From Gaudi to gaudy - in The Bullfight. This is complete with oompah beat, searing white-hot latino trumpets and all the accountrements of Hispanic music from Massenet to Ravel.

The playful Dance Partita sports four movements entitled Baroque with music to match and harpsichord in tow. There are a dissonant Burlesque and Pas d'éclectique, a slow dripping Air, a Folk Dance which is part bucolic Orff, part Grainger and part Beethoven's Pastoral. The final Baroque romp (tr.15) echoes Carl Davis’s Pride and Prejudice music.

This is entertainment music … relax and enjoy. Just listen to those whooping horns at the end of The Bullfight. Last time I heard anything like that it was in Boult's Lyrita recordings of two Moeran works - the Overture to a Masque and the first movement of the Symphony in G minor. Glorious sound.

Rob Barnett



Gerard Hoffnung CDs

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Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable Arcodiva
British Music Soc.
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Hallé
Hortus
Lyrita
Nimbus
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Redcliffe
Sheva
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