William Schuman: Symphony No. 9
The searing, devastating account of William Schuman’s Symphony No. 9 (“Le fosse Ardeatine”) … made the evening memorable. […] bleak, somber landscape and uncompromising intensity [and] musical vision.
Gordon brilliantly imbues the confessional tone of Dickinson’s words with warmth and approachability. […] reverberates with sincerity in its poignant take on death. […] A highlight of the cycle is “Will There Really Be a Morning?”
Gordon’s songs resonate most strongly when interpreted with clear-voiced optimism and resolve, qualities that Zetlan possesses unequivocally. Her bright, shimmering timbre seems to propel the songs forward, as Gordon accompanies her on the piano with conviction and sensitivity to the nuances of the singer’s phrasing and pacing. […] Your Clear Eye boasts exceptionally beautiful music, and Zetlan’s steadfast, empathic approach to Gordon’s songs makes for listening that’s engaging and mesmerizing.
Among the highlights was “At the Kansas City Chinese New Year Concert,” a compact but theatrically astute string quartet by Chen Yi, who has long taught at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. The first movement has an inviting, celebratory air. The second uses long-held tones and vibrato effects to evoke, according to Ms. Chen’s program note, hand-pulled noodle making.