PIOTR MOSS (b.1949): Symphonie concertante for Flute, Piano and Orchestra (Elzbieta Gajewska [flute], Barbara Halska [piano], Polish Radio and TV Orchestra Cracow; Zbigniew Graca), Adagio III (Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra Katowice; Graca), Portraits for Piano and Orchestra (Emilian Madey [piano], Polish Radio Symphony Orchestra; Tomasz Bugaj).
Catalogue Number: 01P078
Description: Symphonie concertante is Moss' Third Symphony, a substantial symphonic structure in the composer's favored five sections. The soloists have an important, virtuosic role throughout, but the impression is of a symphonic narrative with two prominent 'characters' rather than a solo vehicle concerto. Kaleidoscopic interplay - even collision, or confrontation - of contrasts is an important feature of Moss' style, and the work abounds in abrupt transitions between brief sections of diverse character, alternating lush, tonal-sounding neo-romanticism, harsh modernist dissonances and what sound like cinematic cues of ambiguous idiom taken in isolation. Portraits, twenty years more recent, is more stylistically consistent; the 'portraits' of the title, are loosely speaking, of composers who extended elements of the forms and expressive intents of the romantic piano concerto into the twentieth century - Rachmaninov, Bartók, Szymanowski, Ravel, Prokofiev - with suggestions of both homage and satire. The first movement is full of grandiose gesture, dramatic conflict and energy; the second is mysterious and nocturnal, though interrupted by brief outbursts of aggressions; and the finale is a more straightforward motoric allegro. Adagio III is a somber funeral march in memory of Antoine Tisné, cast in arch form with violently protesting outbursts, predominantly tonal and orchestrated in bleak, monochromatic colors.