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The Akademia Music Awards selects Douglas Knehans - Cloud Ossuary as 'Best Classical Album' for May 2022

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The Akademia Music Awards is pleased to present the award for Best Classical Album to Douglas Knehans for 'Cloud Ossuary' for the month of May 2022. It is the opinion of The Akademia Board that this work represents an important contribution towards the diversity and advancement of the global music community.

"Pairing two new works for orchestra with soloist is Knehans’ newest disc Cloud Ossuary.

Recorded with tremendous fidelity and color the disc includes Knehans’ Mist Waves  for solo violin and strings performed in this recording by the brilliant Czech violinist Pavel Wallinger. Wallinger’s keening lines sit wonderfully against the withheld backdrop of the Brno Philharmonic strings.

The second work on the disc, Knehans’ Cloud Ossuary is set in three related movements in a fast-slow-slow arrangement. These culminate in an extended setting for soprano and orchestra—utilizing only English horn, trumpet, two percussionists, harp and strings—of Knehans’ daughter’s poem Bones and All. Katarina Knehans, a professional writer, has already collaborated with a number of other composers and her sensitivity to vocal setting is very clear here. Her words give intensity, image, substance and philosophical depth to the work. With an extended soprano solo delivered with intense passion by rising star Judith Weusten, the work culminates in a luminous and darkly reflective mood.

The performances by the orchestra, conductor Mikel Toms and most importantly the fine soloists on this disc make it a significant and emotional statement by Knehans and his collaborators.

Here are the tracks

1 Mist Waves— for solo violin and strings [7:41] - Pavel Wallinger, Violin - Brno Philharmonic Orchestra; Mikel Toms, Conductor
2 Cloud Ossuary—Symphony No. 4 / I. The Ossein Cage [7:59]
3 Cloud Ossuary—Symphony No. 4 / II. Breathe Clouded [13:38]
4 Cloud Ossuary—Symphony No. 4 / III. Bones and All [26:02] - Judith Weusten, Soprano - Brno Philharmonic Orchestra

some quotes

“…wonderfully orchestrated… dynamic and endlessly evolving.” —BBC Music Magazine

“…the sounds of nature course through the orchestral pieces…with a primitive force and melodic insistence that recall Stravinsky.” —The New Yorker

“In [Bones and All] the composer proves himself once more a past master of writing for the voice, setting the complex text by Katarina Knehans with perfect command of the genre… Those words give closure to an impressive work by Douglas Knehans, an ever-challenging, ever-surprising musical artist." - All About the Arts

SEE The Akademia Music Awards PAGE