Verhiel Lioncourt Thomas Bedard Hemke Bozza Enns
Allen Harrington saxophone
Lottie Enns-Braun organ
Ravello Records presents VANISHING POINT, featuring saxophonist Allen Harrington and organist Lottie Enns-Braun in an unusual instrumental pairing not often heard in classical repertoire. “The saxophone and organ are wind instruments that rarely occupy the same space at the same time,” says Enns-Braun, “and it is our contention that this seemingly incongruous combination is actually quite perfect.”
The duo showcases this striking sonic blend with a vibrant collection of pieces, written mostly by living composers and those active in the 20th century. Guy de Lioncourt’s Kyrie setting Melodies Gregoriennes juxtaposes 10th century liturgical chant styles with a modern harmonic sensibility, and on the transcription of Eugène Bozza’s lullaby Chanson à bercer, the duo’s regular encore, the saxophone gently soars over the organ’s lush underpinnings.
Partita Breve by Ton Verhiel and Sonate I by Denis Bédard are both Baroque-inspired contemporary works that bring the era’s signature formal structures into a modern setting. Augusta Read Thomas provides two intensely expressive pieces, Angel Tears and Earth Prayers, that lay bare emotionally-driven material both personal and universal.
Frederick Hemke contributes two miniatures contemplative Norwegian folk song arrangements, Un Mi Gud et Lite Rom (“Grant me God a little room”) and Hus Gud Er Idel Glede (“In God is eternal joy”), which impart a different and distinct flavor to the album.
The collection draws to a close with the title track, Vanishing Point by Leonard Enns. Across its three movements, the piece moves from a frenzied and energetic opening to an ethereal and calm dissolve, blurring the divisions between beginning and end, conflict and resolution.
Allen Harrington and Lottie Enns-Braun have been performing as a duo since 2005. Countless recitals later, they have been featured on Winnipeg’s Westminster Organ Series and at the 2016 Royal Canadian College of Organists’ National Convention
In addition to his career as a performer, Allen Harrington teaches saxophone, bassoon, and chamber music at the University of Manitoba. He has released two CDs through Ravello Records of his duo work with pianist Laura Loewen: METROPOLIS (RR7889) and THE POSTCARD SESSIONS (RR7934)
Lottie Enns-Braun is the organist and director of music at Young United Church in Winnipeg and organist at the University of Manitoba, as well as a member of the Royal Canadian College of Organists. She is a prominent presence in the Winnipeg music scene, both as a soloist and as a collaborator in ensembles
Dr. Frederick Hemke is an internationally recognized saxophonist, and served extensively as a member of the faculty at Northwestern University, teaching among many others, Allen Harrington
Augusta Read Thomas’s 2006 Angel Tears and Earth Prayers were recorded immediately following the Paris attacks in November 2015, giving voice and expression to the resulting feelings of horror, helplessness, and hope felt by the two musicians
Release Date: November 18, 2016
Catalog #: RR7948
Partita Breve Ton Verhiel (b. 1956)
2 Menuett and Trio Hymne
5 Clémens Rector Guy de Lioncourt (1885-1961)
6 Angel Tears Augusta Read Thomas (b.1964)
7 Earth Prayers Augusta Read Thomas (b. 1964)
Sonate I Denis Bédard (b. 1950)
11 Und Mig Gud et Lite Rom arr. Frederick Hemke (b. 1935)
12 Hos Gud Er Idel Glede arr. Frederick Hemke (b. 1935)
13 Chanson à Bercer Eugène Bozza (1905-1991)
Vanishing Point Leonard Enns (b. 1948)
14 Con vivo
15 Slow, peaceful
All tracks recorded November 16-18, 25 & 26, 2015
at Young United Church in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Recording Session Engineer and Producer Dan Donahue
Organ Technician Edwin Foidart
Saxophone Technician Kevin Junk
Executive Producer Bob Lord
Executive A&R Sam Renshaw
A&R Brandon MacNeil
Audio Director Jeff LeRoy
Production Engineer Lucas Paquette
Art & Production Director Brett Picknell
Graphic Designer Emily Roulo, Ryan Harrison
Marketing Mike Mahn
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Ravello Records is the contemporary classical label imprint of audio production house PARMA Recordings. Dedicated to highlighting forward thinking composers and musicians from around the world, the New England-based label's eclectic catalog offers listeners a cross-section of today's up-and-coming innovators in orchestral, chamber, and experimental music.
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