DAVID GOMPPER (b.1954): Double Concerto “Dialogue” for Violin, Cello and Orchestra, Clarinet Concerto, Sunburst.
Catalogue Number: 01U058
Description: Gompper's idiom is based in tonality, though rather ambiguously so, with excursions into a variety of more modernist styles as dictated by the music's narrative. In recent years the composer has explored the potential of the concerto genre (see also 05M083), and these works conform to the tradition of placing the soloist(s) center stage in lively dialogue with the orchestra. Or, in the case of the Double Concerto, with each other, the orchestra amplifying and commenting on the solo material as though providing texture to the protagonists' inner monologue. The solo instruments begin with somewhat blurred identities, and progress through a series of episodes - four linked movements - sometimes argumentative and contentious, sometimes reflective, sometimes making idle 'small talk' like new acquaintances sizing one another up, until an extended cadenza finds them deep in mutually satisfying conversation. The Clarinet Concerto is based on the sport of Parkour, acrobatic running and leaping through urban landscapes involving dizzying feats of gymnastics and balance (if you're not familiar with the phenomenon, type the word into YouTube and choose from thousands of examples for your delight and edification). The three linked movements - 'Vaulting', 'Balancing' and 'Coursing' - fast-slow/cadenza-fast - are self-explanatory. Sunburst, based on the graphic representation of a mathematical sequence that looks like a star, brackets a mysterious, floating central section with a prominent cello monologue between two high-energy orchestral toccatas. Wolfgang David (violin), Timothy Gill (cello), Michael Norsworthy (clarinet), Royal Philharmonic Orchestra; Emmanuel Siffert.