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With my 6th, I returned to the idea of a single span incorporating several sub-sections, a form which I had already explored in my 1st, 3rd and 4th. The result may feel more like a tone-poem than a conventional symphony (if there is such a thing nowadays) and I certainly hope the music has a strong narrative to it, but there is no specific story to listen out for; instead there are a number of sections which are all connected in some way.
The trumpet call at the start introduces a simple woodwind figure which is to return at various points of the symphony. It is expanded during the first, slow, section and eventually gives way to a faster ostinato figure in the strings. The ostinato section develops, but after becoming quite forceful peters out, giving way to section three, which has soft sustained chords from the winds, harp and vibraphone against which the strings weave expressive phrases, becoming steadily more intense. Then, after quietly nocturnal solos from the trumpet and clarinet, a perky fugato section begins, which works itself out until the opening figure returns in a much grander form. There’s a brief restatement of the idea from the third section, this time featuring two clarinets, then the music scurries to its close—and finishes with a bang!
from notes by Christopher Gunning © 2021
|Gunning: Symphonies Nos 6 & 7|
Three quietly programmatic works from a modern master of orchestral mood-making: 'If you wish to express positive emotions why not use straightforward tonality?'» More
|Hyperion sampler - February 2021 Vol. 2|