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Angele Dubeau with La Pieta - Pulsations - makes PublicRadio90: Classiclectic 2019 Year's End List

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Classical Music has transformed. The doors have been thrown open wide, allowing for a multitude of sounds, voices, performers to be heard, and experiences to explore.  And, as Hans Christian Andersen said, "Where words fail, music speaks."  In increasingly turbulent times, music is not just a balm for the soul, but a tool for expression against oppression and a vehicle for a message.  In a time of "OK, Boomer" vs. millenial disdain, music (while exponentially expanding in scope to a point where genre is becoming meaningless, and to some, a line in the sand) still finds a way to bring people together as a common form of expression, enjoyment, and passion.

In 2019, I began a series on Classiclectic called "Genre Fluid Fridays," in which I actively searched for the best in new classical releases, whether they be newer recordings of traditional classical composers and works, or music of living composers and genre-bending combinations of sounds.  Usually, a classical radio announcer simply presents the works, tells a bit of back-story, and lets the music speak. My (pesky) millenial attitude is that classical music radio should not just put the great composers on a pedestal, but also allow room for the composers of "the now."  Instead of always riding the warhorses into battle, maybe take a new composer's work for a spin and see how it fares; as Miss Frizzle says, "Take chances, make mistakes, get messy!"

So, to pull a cue from the traditions of the end-of-the-year playbook, I have presented for you a humble list of a dozen releases from 2019 that stuck with me.

Angele Dubeau with La Pieta - Pulsations

"A pulsation marks time, it infuses its rhythm in it and also evokes the heart." The premise for gathering the works of contemporary composers allows for discovery of works that touch the heart and allow for space to breathe.  Celebrated Canadian Violinist Angele Dubeau (along with La Pieta, her long-time all-female string ensemble) curate a selection of post-minimalist music that bubble with the excitement of discovery.

SEE THE FULL PublicRadio90: Classiclectic 2019 Year's End List