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Jack Gallagher (b.1947): Symphony No. 2 'Ascendent'; Quiet Reflections / London SO; Falletta

Album Summary

>Gallagher, Jack : Symphony no 2 ("Ascendent")
>Gallagher, Jack : Quiet Reflections, for orchestra
Conductor Ensembles Composer

Notes & Reviews:

Jack Gallagher continues his association with the London Symphony Orchestra conducted by JoAnn Falletta with Symphony No. 2 'Ascendant,' a robust, colorful work of dramatic contrasts and expansive architecture that seeks to express the aspirations and strivings of the human spirit. Quiet Reflections is a calm, serenely lyrical meditation which evokes a sense of longing for past tranquility. Gallagher's previous Naxos release Orchestral Music (8.559652) with the LSO conducted by JoAnn Falletta was awarded five stars by BBC Music Magazine and hailed as "fresh and exuberant" and for "its explosions of sound and color" by Gramophone.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: Blackheath Concert Hall, London, England (09/02/2013-09/03/2013).



Reviews

Ascendant
One intriguing exercise might be attempting to identify the myriad sources which have informed the work of Jack Gallagher. Stravinsky, Bartok, Hindemith, and Sibelius immediately spring to mind. That aside, Mr. Gallagher should be commended for what he has fashioned here. There is a sincerity and ambitiousness of vision which compels one to shed all preconceived notions and grant this material a careful listen. More often than not, Mr. Gallagher hits his mark, producing sophisticated, well organized writing which reflects a penchant for fertile lyrical ideas, strong polyphonic construction and imaginative scoring. When is the last time any contemporary composer attempted a traditional, full scale symphony which is tonal to the core and hearkens back to an earlier aesthetic? This is not to say that there are not issues. There are instances in the score where Mr. Gallagher’s considerable ingenuity loses steam and gives way to rambling and some strained transitions. The lovely, contemplative Quiet Reflections is an unqualified success partly because of its brevity. Not a single bar is gratuitous. Shortcomings aside, this project can be graded with a B+ for intent in no small part because of the solid leadership and advocacy of Maestro Falletta. The LSO plays with passion and their customary precision. Producer Tim Handley takes full advantage of the wonderfully resonant, airy acoustics of Black Heath Concert Hall in South East London. Clearly Mr. Gallagher is a composer worth watching.
Submitted on 02/20/15 by Allen Cohen 
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Works Details

>Gallagher, Jack : Symphony no 2 ("Ascendent")
  • Conductor: JoAnn Falletta
  • Ensemble: London Symphony Orchestra
  • Notes: Blackheath Concert Hall, London, England (09/02/2013-09/03/2013)
  • Running Time: 62 min. 19 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Orchestral
  • Written: 2010-2013

>Gallagher, Jack : Quiet Reflections, for orchestra
  • Conductor: JoAnn Falletta
  • Notes: Blackheath Concert Hall, London, England (09/02/2013-09/03/2013)
  • Running Time: 12 min. 2 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Form: Orchestral
  • Written: 1996