Master clarinetist David Shifrin partners with the Dover and Harlem String Quartets in an album that blazes with excitement. The three new quintets showcase the clarinet’s many moods and tones and explore the expressive capabilities of the string quartet as well.
First on the album is Ducal Suite, featuring arrangements of compositions by Duke Ellington, one of the twentieth-century’s greatest and most influential composers. David Schiff’s arrangements make the most of Shifrin’s virtuosity and deep feeling for this music.
Chris Rogerson’s Thirty Thousand Days explores three stages of life, divided into increments of ten thousand days (approximately twenty-seven years). The music constantly changes and evolves throughout the three movements of the piece.
Valerie Coleman’s Shotgun Houses is a tribute to Muhammed Ali. The first movement is a portrait of the West Louisville, Kentucky, neighborhood where both she and Ali grew up. The middle movement is a love ballad, and the final movement depicts the boxing match in which Ali won an Olympic gold medal in Rome in 1960.