Tuesday, December 13, 2016

"Dances & Rhapsodies: Works for Wind Quintet" Composed by Fred Onovwerosuoke and Performed by IMI Chamber Players as their Debut CD, is a Winner

Dances & Rhapsodies: Works for Wind Quintet
IMI Chamber Players
Fred Onovwerosuoke
African Music Publishers AMP AGCD 2608 (2016)

Fred Onovwerosuoke

Dr. Wendy Hymes, flutist and performer on the disc, describes the music:

Works on the CD
Performing these works has been a brief journey into Africa's vast sanctum of intricate rhythms.  As the composer kindly shared with us: "each movement is complete and independent but collectively they capture a celebration of life, of a people's accomplishments, hopes and aspirations..."  The Four Dances for Wind Quintet were inspired by a variety of dance idioms and folk material researched from around Africa.  Movt. No. 1, Beethoven Returns to Africa, is a satirical perspective on the possible African roots of the legendary composer.  The work is nuanced in rhythmic and harmonic cliches.  Movt. No. 2, Yarinya (Maiden), is based on a lilting West African serenade while Movt. No. 3, Ayevwiomo (Mother Begets) captures a communal dance celebrating a new birth.  Movt. No. 4, Dance Tribute, is just that: a tribute in movement.  Four More Dances for Wind Quintet, on the other hand, in the composer's own words, "is an experimental journey into some of Africa's vast rhythmic and harmonic languages (modes), musical traditions whose roots are not immediately apparent, but which possibly portend a new frontier for future composers."  Movt. No. 1, Ogiribo (The Storm), uses three rhythmic moods to great effect.  In Movt. No. 2, Domenshigbe, the composer's innane urge shines through; to tell a story without words.  Movt. No. 3 borrows its tune from royal court dances from the ancient Edo Kingdom.  Movt. No. 4 is a rhythmic tapestry of warrior dances to welcome another planting season.  The Rhapsodies for Wind Quintet are among the composer's latest works.  No. 2 reimagines a beloved tune from Kenya, while No. 3 reenacts seances and healing dances from the Central African region.  Enjoy!                                                                     
More information on The Intercultural Music Initiative is available online at www.imusici.net.  Composer Fred Onovwerosuoke (FredO) is represented in numerous recordings as well as films, documentaries and radio programs.These include Robert De Niro's film, The Good Shepherd (Universal Studios, 2006) and Niyi Coker's film, Pennies for Boatman.  Onovwerosuoke has produced diverse works for chamber groups and orchestra, and has a website at www.fredomusic.com.

We have enjoyed each of our several hearings of Dances & Rhapsodies, and can wholeheartedly suggest the recording as a personal investment in one's music collection or as a gift which is quite likely to be warmly appreciated.  It is widely available.                                   

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