Review Roundup: Orchestra Underground - Dreamscapes at Zankel Hall

Now in its 40th season, the American Composers Orchestra continues to perform concerts that "are always fascinating ... frequently exhilarating forays into recent music-or music that was written decades ago but is still fresh" (Newsday). At the vanguard of new music, this outstanding ensemble presents thrilling works by visionary composers.

American Composers Orchestra (ACO), now in its 40th season, is the only orchestra in the world dedicated to the creation, performance, promotion and celebration of music by American composers. ACO makes the creation of new opportunities for American composers and new American orchestral music its central purpose. Through concerts at Carnegie Hall and other venues, educational programs, New Music Readings, and commissions, ACO identifies today's brightest emerging composers, champions prominent established composers as well as those lesser-known, and increases regional, national, and international awareness of the infinite variety of American orchestral music, reflecting geographic, stylistic, and temporal diversity. ACO also serves as an incubator of ideas, research, and talent, as a catalyst for growth and change among orchestras, and as an advocate for American composers and their music. Visit for more information.

Dreamscapes was performed Friday, April 6, 2018 at Zankel Hall.

Let's see what the critics have to say!

Seth Colter Walls, NY Times: As a player, Mr. Lehman has few peers when it comes making severe changes of attack feel fluid. In the hands of the orchestra, these effects sounded more labored during the early going on Friday. But as the piece morphed from leaden, hard-struck percussive passages to a sense of weightless drift, carried by resonant vibraphone chords, the conductor George Manahan and his orchestra gradually realized Mr. Lehman's interest in mystic change.

George Grella, NY Classical Review: The piece was a grab-bag of knockoffs from Mozart, Beethoven, Rachmaninoff, Stravinsky, and maybe even a little Billy Joel. None of the material, mainly major and minor scales and triads, was interesting, and their repetitions made the advertised 18-minute duration feel much longer. That's even with the benefit of Iverson's virtuosity and fine playing from the orchestra under conductor George Manahan-the sharpest ACO concert in many years.

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