Rotholz Tapestry of American Flute Duos

The album is titled “American Tapestry,” but it’s no crazy quilt. The four duos for flute and piano Susan Rotholz and Margaret Kampmeier perform fit nicely together. All are tonal after a fashion, giving the program coherence; and yet each differ in character to give the listener real variety.

Robert Beaser takes a simple theme and lets it logically unfold with his “Variations for flute and Piano.” Some of the harmonies have an open quality to them, which makes the Variations a nice lead-in to Aaron Copland’s “Duo for Flute and Piano.” This 1971 work has the wide open sound of Copland’s Americana works.

Robert Muczynski’s “Sonata for Flute and Piano” also fits well. to my ears, the work has a Ravel/Debussy quality to it, with a hint of Samuel Barber. That’s not a bad combination, and one that makes for an attractive and enjoyable work. The album concludes with Lowell Liebermann’s “Sonata for Flute and Piano,” and almost seems like a further development of Muczynski’s work. Liebermann’s piece is just as artfully constructed, with melodies that can only be described as beautiful.

Rotholz plays with a clear tone that’s never out of control. Even when the music takes the flute into the extreme upper register, the sound gets brighter but never shrill. The recording is also well-balanced. Both flute and piano are on par with each other and sitting comfortably in the soundfield; close enough to hear all the detail, without capturing any harshness.

American Tapestry: Duos for Flute and Piano
Susan Rotholz, flute; Margaret Kampmeier, piano
Bridge Records

More Recent Posts

  • Gallery: Paintings by Steve Keene

    Earlier this year, we asked WTJU alum and Brooklyn-based artist Steve Keene to design a Rock Marathon t-shirt for us. He benevolently donated his talents and sent us a whole stack of paintings to choose from. We selected a few of our favorites and present them here. Some of Keene’s better known album covers include […]

  • March 28 Gather ‘Round: Tony Trischka (2012)

    Gather ‘Round each Saturday night from 8-9 for WTJU Folk‘s concert series; both archived and live. There will be shows from The Prism Coffeehouse and VA Folklife archives mixed in with some from our announcers’ own libraries. And you never know when a live concert might pop up! This week’s program comes from a 2012 […]

  • Charles Villiers Stanford Piano Trio 2, Piano Quartet 1

    To my ears, Stanford’s music has always sounded like Brahms with an Irish accent. That’s not a bad thing. Like Brahms, Stanford constructed his music within accepted classical frameworks. But within those frameworks he crafts his motifs and harmonies with a great deal of imagination. Which is what makes this new Naxos release a pleasure […]

  • WTJU’s 2015 Rock Marathon is Right Around the Corner!

    In just under two weeks, we’ll celebrate  7 days of exceptional rock music! From April 6th to the 12th,  DJs from all backgrounds will come together to support the station and explore the wild and wide genre known as Rock. From shows dedicated to the legacy of artists like Prince (“Touch of Purple” Monday from 8-11pm) and […]

  • New Blues & Soul News – 3/24/2015

    New Blues News – 3/24/2015 New Blues Adds: Robben Ford – Into The Sun (Provogue): Veteran guitarist Ford presents his latest offering of blues inflected songs, several with a country soul/blues funk that is as infectious as can be.  Ford’s smooth and inventive guitar work is supported by Brian Allen (b), Wes Little (d), and […]

  • Piano Quintets by Pierné and Vierne

    The pairing of these two French piano quintets is a logical one. Gabriel Pierné studied with Gabriel Fauré, and Louis Vierne audited his courses as a teenager (Vierne was to formally study with Fauré but Fauré died shortly after Vierne was enrolled). And superficially, both quintets share similarities with Fauré’s style. Both works share a […]