Concert Review: Baltimore, Toronto symphonies premiere Glass “Overture”

Posted on: June 20, 2012

In Monday’s (6/18) Baltimore Sun, Tim Smith writes, “With a giant flag of 15 stars and stripes as a backdrop inside Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, a celebratory concert Sunday night drew a packed house to cap the weekend’s commemoration of the War of 1812 bicentennial. … A good number of men and women in military dress dotted the audience. They, along with veterans, got a chance to be recognized for their service when the Sea Chanters joined the BSO for a medley of armed forces anthems. BSO music director Marin Alsop asked people in each of the services to stand when they heard their particular song. The newsy item on the program was the premiere of ‘Overture for 2012’ by celebrated Baltimore-born composer Philip Glass—actually a co-premiere, for the piece was played simultaneously in Canada by the Toronto Symphony Orchestra as part of the Luminato Festival there. … Except for a few dark brass chords, the ‘Overture for 2012’ does not seem to be concerned with any past unpleasantness. The 75-year-old Glass, a guiding light in the genre known as minimalism, has fashioned an upbeat score that churns along steadily and engagingly. … Alsop, a longtime champion of the composer’s music, gyrated to the propulsive beat as she led the orchestra in a vigorous performance that drew a hearty response from the crowd.”

Posted June 20, 2012