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The Way Things Go - Tara Helen O’Connor and Margaret Kampmeier Perform Richard Festinger’s The Way Things Go

“Standouts on the release include… the title track, The Way Things Go, by Richard Festinger, another O'Connor commission. This ultra-chromatic modernist work has a series of dramatic starts and stops, yet always moves inexorably towards its climaxes. The piece is a technical challenge for both performers, and O'Connor and Kampmeier own it.”       - Ralph Graves, the-unmutual-blogspot.com

“Instruments and playing technique change over time, consequently influencing the conceptions of what an instrument is and how it can sound. This broad collection offers a selection of works by contemporary composers that have significantly contributed the the flute repertoire and challenge ears and minds that have been conditioned to a set of historical precedents… The musical intensity, the shifting of stylistic gears, though classical in simplicity and texture, and the explorations of flute and piano sonorities provide timbral adventures and varying moods… combining sounds in ways unique, evocative and intriguing”         - Lynne S. Mazza

Completed in 2006, The Way Things Go is a virtuosic partnership between the flute and piano. The first movement is a theme followed by four variations. Encompassing two pairs of short, simple phrases, the movement’s theme emerges as classical in its structure and proportional balance.

Read the complete program note from the CD booklet.

Bridge CD 9467   Available Now from Bridge Records




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Diary of a Journey - The New York New Music Ensemble Performs Richard Festinger

Includes the compositions DIARY OF A JOURNEY, THE COMING OF AGE, LAWS OF MOTION,
and A DREAM FORETOLD

"There is a Shaker expression, “every force evolves a form,” that comes vividly to mind when listening to the music of Richard Festinger. The four works gathered here, written from 2001 to 2006, are each quintessential examples of his approach to composition. Festinger develops powerful generative ideas, examines their implications, and finds avenues for their inherent musical architecture and expressive possibilities to be revealed." - Benjamin Frandzel

Read more from Benjamin Frandzel's notes on the CD.

"Festinger is a skilled composer with a fascinating background. This CD should appeal to those who are willing to stray off the typical contemporary path and want to hear something new." - Audiophile Audition

These recordings are expertly performed by the members of the New York New Music Ensemble: James Baker, percussion; Christophen Finckel, cello; Steve Gosling, piano; Jean Kopperud, clarinets; Jeff Milarsky, conductor; Linda Quan, violin; and Jayn Rosenfeld, flutes. They are joined on this outstanding disk by guest artists Sunghae Anna Lim, violin; Margaret Kampmeier, piano; Lois Martin, viola; Jo Ellen Miller, soprano; and Harvey Sollberger, conductor.

NAXOS CD 8.559399   Available Now from NAXOS International

Read the Classical Voice of North Carolina review




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New Millennium Ensemble Performs Richard Festinger

Includes the compositions PERIPETEIA, PIANO VARIATIONS, TRIPTYCH, CONSTRUCTION EN METAL ET BOIS,
and AFTER BLUE

"Move over Haydn! Richard Festinger, composer and distinguished Professor of Music Composition at San Francisco State University, presents a recording of five chamber works... featuring the Naumburg award-winning New Millennium Ensemble [Bridge Records 9245]... [Festinger] approaches composition with the intellectual curiosity of an academic, the heart of a romantic, and the depth of one totally immersed in the art...[the music] is neatly structured and rich in counterpoint and rhythmic intricacy. [Variations for Piano] culls the intricacy of Liszt's Les Preludes and the spaciousness of Webern's piano works... [it is] perfectly executed, well-crafted music. Construction en metal et bois for piano and percussion pushes the boundaries of chamber music. Here Festinger gives us his best and the demanding challenges are met with equal passion. Margaret Kampmeier and John Ferrari, like two fighter pilots, perform at lightning speed and with the intensity of a tarantella... Festinger's music, like a Mark Rothko painting, is beautiful, even on the surface. And discovering what's beneath makes it rewarding." - Classical Voice of North Carolina

Read the article on this CD in the Journal of the Society for American Music.

Bridge CD 9245   Available from Bridge Records

Price: $14.99 plus shipping



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Richard Festinger Chamber Music

Includes the compositions TAPESTRIES, TRIONOMETRY, STRING QUARTET and TWINNING

"Here now is a most welcome disc... devoted entirely to the chamber music of this California-based composer... The music is complex and prismatic but transparent... ever managing to find a balance between delicacy and introspection on the one hand and rhythmic vivacity on the other... Festinger (unlike far too many of his contemporaries) never resorts to gimmicks... His music remains unsullied and uncompromising, speaking directly to the hearts of those who care to listen." - American Record Guide

CRI CD 832   Available from New World Records

Price: $15.99 plus shipping



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New Millennium Ensemble - Here Comes Everybody

Includes A SERENADE FOR SIX

Written in 1993. Scored for flute/piccolo, clarinet/bass clariinet, violin, cello, piano and percussion commissioned by the New York New Music Ensemble. World Premiere performance November 8, 1993 by the New York New Music Ensemble at Merkin Hall, New York, David Gilbert conducting.

"Festinger's... classically-shaped, three-movement Serenade spins out kaleidoscopic but transparent contrapuntal elaborations (and, in the lovely slow movement, lyrical lines) with a lapidary craftsmanship and expressive warmth... The Serenade's delicacy and nuance are wonderfully set off by a thrilling final toccata propelled along by jazz-derived rhythmic asymmetries. This splendid work is, for me, the high spot of a very fine program."

          - American Record Guide


CRI CD 772   Available from New World Records

Price: $15.99 plus shipping


Earplay

Includes SEPTET

Written in 1987. Scored for flute, clarinet, violin, viola, cello, percussion and piano. Commissioned by the Earplay ensemble. World Premiere November 23, 1987, by the Earplay ensemble, First Unitarian Church, San Francisco, California, conducted by the composer.

"If you follow contemporary American music, you'll want to investigate this collection of eclectic, high-quality composing and outstanding playing. I...was fascinated by Richard Festinger's 'little-orchestra' approach to the ensemble..." - American Record Guide

Centaur CD CRC 2274   Available from Centaur Records

Price: $16.00 plus shipping



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East Meets West

Includes TRIPTYCH for solo flute

Written in 1979. World Premiere May 5, 1979, the American Center, Boulevard Raspail, Paris France, Leslie Lind, flute.

"Triptych... is compelling. There are no jet whistles, key clicks, and the like, but just perfectly executed, well-crafted music. Turning wide leaps into counterpoint and executing widely-spaced trills with the precision of a mockingbird using athletic breath control..."

          - Classical Voice of North Carolina

CRS Vinyl LP 8738   Available from Contemporary Record Society

Price: $12.98 plus shipping

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