Friday, November 13, 2009

'Christmas In The Western World' of William Grant Still On Cambria CD 'The Toledo Clarinets'

[“The Toledo Clarinets”; Georg Klaas, clarinet; Jocelyn Langworthy, clarinet; Shannon Ford, clarinet; Kevin Schempf, clarinet; Chelsea Tipton II, clarinet; Elliott Ross, clarinet; Greg Kostraba, piano; “Sonatina for Clarinet Choir” (11:38), Jerome Moross; “Lyric Quartette” (15:18), William Grant Still; “Quartet for Four B-Flat Clarinets” (10:28), Sean Osborn; “Christmas in the Western World (Las Pascuas)” (18:51), William Grant Still; “De Profundis” (10:43), Christopher Dietz; Cambria CAMCD-1190 (2009)]

Greg Kostraba, D.M.A., is a classical pianist who combines piano performance with classical music broadcasting. His studies for a D.M.A. focused on the piano music of Wiliam Grant Still, who is profiled at, where a complete Works List by Prof. Dominique-René de Lerma is featured. We met Greg several years ago when he was Music Director for WGTE-FM, Toledo Public Radio. He is now Program Director for WBAA, West Lafayette, Indiana and has sent AfriClassical news of a new recording, “The Toledo Clarinets”, which includes works of William Grant Still:

“Hi Bill, I've been meaning to tell you about the new Toledo Clarinets CD on Cambria that I've produced - It includes my arrangements of the Lyric Quartet and Christmas in the Western World by William Grant Still (I played piano on the latter). Thanks so much for all of your support over the years!! --Greg”

The link leads to information on obtaining “Toledo Clarinets”, Cambria CAMCD-1190 (2009), either as a download or as a regular CD. Performers are Shannon Ford, clarinet; Georg Klaas, clarinet; Greg Kostraba, piano; Jocelyn Langworthy, clarinet; Elliott Ross, clarinet; Kevin Schempf, clarinet; and Chelsea Tipton II, clarinet. Tracks 1-3 are “Sonatina for Clarinet Choir” (11:38) by Jerome Moross (1913-1983). “Lyric Quartette” (15:18) by William Grant Still is found on Tracks 4-6. Its movements are “The Sentimental One,” “The Quiet One,” and “The Jovial One.” Sean Osborn (b. 1966) is composer of “Quartet for Four B-Flat Clarinets” (10:28), on Tracks 7-10.

Tracks 11-20 consist of William Grant Still's “Christmas in the Western World (Las Pascuas)” (18:51), whose movement titles reflect his deep interest in all of the peoples of the Americas: No. 1. A Maiden Was Adoring God, The Lord (Argentina (1:43); No. 2. Ven, Nino Divino (Nicaragua) (2:39); No. 3. Aguinaldo (Venezuela) (1:41); No. 4. Jesous Ahatonhia (Canadian Indian) (1:56); No. 5. Tell Me, Shepherdess (French Canadian) (2:30); No. 6. De Virgin Mary Had a Baby Boy (Trinidad) (2:32); No. 7. Los Reyes Magos (Puerto Rico) (1:19); No. 8. La Pinata (Mexico) (0:55); No. 9. Glad Christmas Bells (Brazil) (1:51); No. 10. Sing, Shout! Tell the Story! (1:54). “De Profundis” (10:43) by Christopher Dietz is on Track 21.

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