I HAVE LONG HAD
concerns about the wind ensemble repertoire being more about effects, technical difficulty, and incestuous formulas than beauty and expressive opportunities for players that demonstrate the maximum potential for expression by the performers. I found Mr. Alcalde’s work to have significant musical depth through unashamedly and refreshingly beautiful melodies within a strong formal structure. The harmonic imagination was fresh within a traditional framework, the contrast of rhythmic drive was inspired, and the orchestration maximized the idiomatic capabilities of the instruments while challenging the best of players.
Perhaps most notable, the aforementioned were structured for ingenious ebb and flow of emotion, seldom belaboring a theme and always leading to musical impact that reached the musical intellect of the players at their highest levels along with an accessibility that reached audiences from the musically trained through the casual listener. About the music of Antón Alcalde, one of my favorite living composers.
Thomas P. Rohrer, Ph.D. Professor of music & director of music education, Department of Music of Utah State University, United States.