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Discography - Drala
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10 AUG 2009
Fellows of the Tanglewood Music Center
30 NOV 2005
San Francisco, CA
San Francisco Symphony
Michael Tilson Thomas, conductor
Drala is a short symphony but a profound one and, in many of its pages, a profoundly beautiful one....the best of the work is of a luminescence and spiritual strength rare in contemporary art.
What a composer says about a work of his may relate more to intention than to achievement. Drala, however, does express -- and, more, induce in the listener -- a feeling of joyous, athletic well-being, an energetic, sense-heightened kind of serenity and happiness. Like all of Lieberson's music, it is acutely, actively heard and written along every line, without padding. The composer handles his orchestra with imagination and with new, fertile invention; the string writing and the episodes for small, unusual ensembles are especially striking.
The New Yorker,1/1/0001
Lieberson's compact symphony draws on a complex, somewhat impenetrable strain of Buddhist thought and metaphysics centered on non-aggressive warriorship. Yet perhaps the best way to hear DRALA is simply as a striking and hugely individual piece of symphonic writing. Lieberson is an inspired colorist and often draws an array of competing timbres and combinations from his orchestra. The opening Invocation is almost Impressionistic in its French lucidity and twittering birdsong. There are reminders of the composer's serial days, yet there's also a yearning expressive ardency.
Lawrence A. Johnson, South Florida Sun-Sentinel,1/1/0001
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