Review: Jacksonville Symphony premiere of Bryan’s “Bridges”

Posted on: April 18, 2019

“This week’s series from the Jacksonville Symphony treated the city to the debut of a wholly new work inspired by the River City,” writes Timothy Tuller in the Florida Times-Union (4/6) (Jacksonville). The evening opened with Prokofiev’s Violin Concerto in No. 1 D major, featuring guest soloist Jennifer Koh. “Nestled in the middle of the program was a world premiere of  ‘Bridges’ by Courtney Bryan, the Jacksonville Symphony’s first Mary Carr Patton Composer-in-Residence. ‘Bridges’ is a meditation on Jacksonville’s size, scope and cultural diversity … The work is more a tone poem than a traditional symphonic arrangement, pulling together strands of the different peoples and cultures that have shaped the Jacksonville area over the centuries, from the earliest native settlers to the present day. This ambitious feat was largely successful and evidenced a fresh and original compositional voice, particularly in the passage that pays homage to the civil rights anthem ‘Lift Ev’ry Voice and Sing,’ written here in Jacksonville. The performance was preceded by a very helpful exposition of the major themes of the work by the composer herself with conductor Courtney Lewis…. This fruit of the Composer-in-Residence program is promising.” The concert closed with Rachmaninoff’s Symphony No. 2.

Posted April 18, 2019