Pender: Five Dances

By Rickards, Guy | Gramophone, February 2018 | Go to article overview

Pender: Five Dances


Rickards, Guy, Gramophone


Pender Five Dances (a). Kimchi Dreams (b). Lyric Set (c). Suite (d). Toccatina (e). Variations (f) (d) Nicholas Fitton fl (d) Niall Casey, (f) Margaret Herlihy ob (b) Weily Shay, (bd) Brian Tracey cl (c) Philip Kolker, (a) Dillon Meacham, (a) Jonathan Nitz, (ad) Hanul Park bn Alex Carlucci (a) bn/ (a) cbn (d) Jenny Smoak hn (f) Rob Haskins, (c) Scott Pender pf (e) Powell Flute Quartet Navona (F) NV6127 (59' * DDD)

Florida-born, DC-resident Scott Pender (b1959) is nothing if not a composer for the recording age. And a prolific one, at that. His earliest impetus for music came from his parents' record collection, 1960s pop music and film scores, church hymnody and organ music, followed by composition studies with Jean Ivey at the Peabody Conservatory and Gavin Bryars in the UK.

Pender's talent for melody has been much commented on by critics and is much in evidence in this jovial collection of six works. Sometimes Pender's tunefulness can descend into mawkishness, as once or twice in Kimchi Dreams (2013) for the unusual trio of two clarinets and bassoon, inspired by the aftermath of 'a large, late Korean dinner'. …

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