American Quintets Kaleidoscope Chamber Collective Debut

There are plenty of quintets by American composers to choose from. But the three presented here by the Kaleidoscope Chamber Collective hit that sweet spot for me. They’re all first-rate compositions, they’re not over-represented either in recordings or in concert, and they’re all played exceptionally well.

The Kaleidoscope Chamber Collective is just that — a loose collection of performers under the direction of Tom Poster and Elena Urioste. This is their debut recording.

Samuel Barber’s “Dover Beach” for medium voice and string quartet is probably the most-performed of the three works (and that’s a relative term). The Collective’s performance is atmospheric and engaging.

Amy Beach’s 1907 Piano Quintet is a well-crafted work that deserves a wider audience. This isn’t pretty music — it’s a composition of substance. And the Collective delivers on the quintet’s emotional energy and drama.

The Florence Price quintet was one of the works recently discovered in her old home. It receives its world premiere recording with this release.

Price may have used Brahms as a model, but she has her own voice. The incorporation of Black musical traditions into the work is seamless. Florence Price’s star continues to rise, and this recording should boost it even higher.

An exceptional program, performed by first-rate musicians. Now that’s how you do a debut recording!

American Quintets
Amy Beach; Florence Price; Samuel Barber
Kaleidoscope Chamber Collective
Chandos CHAN 20224

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