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MORAVEC: Tempest Fantasy / Mood Swings / B.A.S.S. Variations

Composer(s):Moravec, Paul
Artist(s) Krakauer, David, clarinet • Trio Solisti, Ensemble
Period(s) Contemporary
Genre Classical Music
Category Chamber Music
Catalogue 8.559323
Label Naxos
Quality   320kbps
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Paul Moravec’s music is firmly rooted in Western tradition, yet manages to sound at once fresh, elegant, and fiercely individual. His Tempest Fantasy, the work that won him the Pulitzer Prize in 2004, is a meditation on Shakespeare’s The Tempest, and has been described by Fanfare magazine as ‘openly and ebulliently attractive, flowing with an effortless lyric pulse’. Mood Swings, named by The Washington Post as the best new classical composition of 1999, is a rhythmically charged work that endeavors to make audible the workings of the central nervous system. The disc ends with Scherzo, which the composer describes as ‘a compact, energetic encore-type work’.



Review By Wes Blomster,Daily Camera (Boulder, CO),January 2010

Paul Moravec’s ‘Tempest’ Fantasy based on ‘white-hot fury’ of Patrick Stewart performance…it all started when Patrick Stewart tired of life in outer space and came back to earth. In 1995 Stewart played Prospero in Shakespeare’s “Tempest” in New York’s Public Theater. He played the role, a critic noted, “with white hot fury.” Composer Paul Morovec, in the audience, found Stewart “extraordinary” and went home and began the work that brought him the Pulitzer in 2004: “Tempest Fantasy.” The completed score was dedicated to the Trio Solisti, who—with the help of clarinetist David Krakauer—recorded it for Naxos.


Review By Christopher Lathan,Limelight Magazine,October 2007

This re-release of Arabesque’s recording of Paul moravec’s chamber works for piano trio and clarinet is just fantastic. The Tempest Fantasy (for the same lineup as the Messiaen Quartet for the End of Time but it couldn’t sound more different) won the Pulitzer Prize for music and deservedly so. It is one of the most engaging, ebullient and thoroughly interesting modern works I have heard in a long time. It is dedicated to the players on the disc…They are astoundingly good and play with verve and flair. This is a CD that proves new music can be smart, funny, moving, popular and original. If you don’t like new music, then buy this disc and be surprised.

Review By Michael Anthony,StarTribune,May 2007

Charm isn’t a quality we associate with new music, especially music that wins the Pulitzer Prize. Even so, the characteristic that strikes the listener on a first hearing of Paul Moravec’s “Tempest Fantasy,” which won the Pulitzer in 2004, is charm. A second hearing reveals even more: depth and assured craftsmanship.

Moravec, who teaches at Adelphi University and lives in New York City, wrote this piece—along with the others on this fine Naxos CD—with the Trio Soloisti and clarinetist David Krakauer in mind. They gave the premiere in New York in 2003.


Review By The Star-Ledger,May 2007

Paul Moravec will be artist-in- residence at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton for 2007–2008. A Manhattanite born in 1957, Moravec won the Pulitzer Prize in 2004 for his half-hour chamber work “Tempest Fantasy.” This disc, featuring the piece’s original performers, has been reissued at budget price in the ever-expanding “American Classics” series of Naxos.


Review By David Denton, Naxos,April 2007

Little known outside of the United States, Paul Moravec belongs to that ever increasing group of American composers building bridges with their audiences that have largely been destroyed by the advocates of the Second Viennese School. He was a prolific composer whose 2004 Pulitzer Prize for the Tempest Fantasy placed his name on a higher level of recognition. Scored for clarinet, violin, cello and piano, it was inspired by characters and scenes from Shakespeare’s The Tempest, and it is the feel rather than the detailed substance contained in each of the five movements. The writing at times is very demanding, but essentially lyrical in character, Caliban an extensive movement in combined virtuosity. Mood Swings is a single movement for Piano Trio



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