Lou Harrison


Lou Harrison

PHCD118  |   Phoenix CD

Name Credit
Lou Harrison Lou Harrison Composer
Robert Hughes Robert Hughes Conductor


Lou Harrison

Pacifika Rondo

Four Pieces for Harp

Two Pieces for Psaltery

Music for Violin with Various Instruments


Oakland Youth Orchestra              Pacifika Rondo

Robert Hughes, conductor

Beverly Bellows, harp     Four Pieces for Harp

Two Pieces for Psaltery

William Bouton, violin    Music for Violin with Various Instruments

William Colvig, sheng and fang-hsiang   


It’s about time that Harrison’s uniquely beautiful oeuvre is starting to get the attention that it surely deserves. After all, where else can we find a voice in contemporary music so immediately attractive, original, and completely uninhibited? The major work here is “Pacifika Rondo”, for a typically Harrisonian combination of far eastern and western instruments, with the emphasis on the percussion section. The music mixes all sorts of styles as it travels around the Pacific rim, and even contemplates The Bomb in a twisted atonal idiom. It’s both humorous and disturbing at once. The other instrumental pieces are all attractive essays in Harrison’s contemplative vein. Performance and sonic values are quite high. In sum, a worthy addition to this composer’s growing discography. May it continue to increase.

David Hurwitz: Fanfare Magazine