Recorded by the Silesian Philharmonic Orchestra
in Katowice, Poland, December 1992

Of music and this recording Paul Renz writes:
Music can and should be spiritually enriching, emotionally uplifting and culturally unifying. I firmly believe it is one form of expression and creativity that can act as a planetary poultice and actually ameliorate global distress.

As an American composer, I am honored to be involved in a collaborative effort with a European orchestra for it presages the ultimate coming together of all nations and peoples.

Symphonic Poem
In the traditional senses Symphonic Poem is particularly euphonious, with smooth, polished string lines almost approaching the pop flavor of film scores from that medium’s romantic golden age. “I’m a fool for melody,” said the composer, whose score directions encompass such terms as “affettuoso,” “passione,” “molto legato espressivo,” “delicately,” “bluesy” and “melancholy.” His violin lines and hoedown tunes also suggest Copland in the bouncy “Rodeo” mode, and Renz points out that Gershwin and Ellington are among other intentional references.

Surging and receding through rubatos and fermatas, this well-proportioned tone poem is not programmatic, but reflects the composer’s spontaneous writing method, which he describes as sitting down with a guitar—which along with the bass fiddle is his instrument—and letting the music flow, without prior knowledge of how it will turn out.

-L Kandell

Leslie Kandell is a well-respected and prolific writer and lecturer about music and journalism. She has written many articles and columns for newspapers throughout the United States and has contributed to publications such as the New York Times and Symphony Magazine.
The Silesian Philharmonic Orchestra in Katowice commenced its activities as one of the first artistic institutions in postwar Poland with a symphonic concert given on May 26, 1945. The orchestra has made numerous international tours appearing in concerts and festivals. Many world-renowned artists have appeared in concert with the Silesian Philharmonic including Eugene Ormandy, Gerge Szell, Leopold Stokowski, Zubin Mehta, Arthur Rubinstein, Roger Woodward and Julius Katchen, to name a few.

REVIEWS  |  RESUME  |  MACPHAIL CENTER FOR MUSIC  |  BERKLEE COLLEGE OF MUSIC  |  NEW ENGLAND CONSERVATORY