JACK GALLAGHER (b.1947): Symphony No. 2 "Ascendant", Quiet Reflections.
Catalogue Number: 01Q009
Description: Like the first symphony (10M086), this is a bold, opulently orchestrated tonal work charting a neo-romantic struggle-to-resolution, or darkness-to light trajectory, hence at least in part the title 'Ascendant'. But this work is on a far more ambitious scale, at just under an hour, and is cast in the traditional four-movement mold. The turbulent first movement sets the tone for the whole symphony, developing drama and momentum from the outset, offset by a sensuous second subject. A genial scherzo and lyrical slow movement, twice disrupted by explosive climaxes, continue the argument. The finale sets up passionate confrontations between contrasting material before ending in a blaze of affirmation. Quiet Reflections is more nostalgic and uncertain than the title suggests, with a kind of unanswered question sense of questing doubt, finally resolved into calm tranquility. London Symphony Orchestra; JoAnn Falletta.