Vincent Kennedy composer, conductor
RTÉ Concert Orchestra
Mark Redmond uilleann pipes
Composer Vincent Kennedy and the RTÉ Concert Orchestra bring MUSIC OF PEOPLE AND PLACE to Navona Records. Selected from some of his most beloved works and inspired by the people, mysticism, mythology, history, and landscapes of his native Ireland, this album is a rich collection of 19 stories, each appealing to the human spirit with sublime performances by the superb musicians of the RTÉ Concert Orchestra.
Where The North Wind Blows, in which the orchestra is joined by Mark Redmond on uilleann pipes, is one of the few — if not the only — concert pieces written for Bb Uilleann pipes. This powerful music contrasts in character with Colmcille’s Lament, heard first with orchestra and then in a new textural layer with broad raw emotion at the critical close of the album. From IRISHMEN AND IRISHWOMEN is the deeply moving Brothers to Arms, the reverential Arbour Hill, and the hauntingly evocative Grá (Love) played beautifully by Mia Cooper (Violin) and Yue Tang (Cello).
Kennedy’s most performed work, Meditation on the Book of Kells, and a musical memorial to John F. Kennedy are here. And for the child and dreamer in all of us – The First Steam Train in Ireland, The Accidental Tango, and The Birth Cloak.
Much like the Irish library’s stained-glass window into which the melody from A Sunny Day In Fethard-on-Sea was honorably etched, MUSIC OF PEOPLE AND PLACE is an inspired orchestral body of work painted in a series of kaleidoscope slides, each as elegant as the last, offering a rewarding and enriching musical experience for the listener.