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Flute & Company
Flute Music by Katherine Hoover

"[Hoover's style] incorporates elements from neoclassicism, impressionism, and more up-to-date idioms as well as modal, ethnic, and quasi-Medieval scales ...Dances and Variations is a full-size (20-minute) three-movement duo for flute and harp. I is a sprightly Allegro that deploys clever and playful dovetailed entries of the two instruments, II a moody, rhapsodic Adagio, and III a limpid and expansive variation-set on a winsome 18th Century air, 'My Days Have Been So Wondrous Free', by Francis Hopkinson, described in the notes as 'a Philadelphia lawyer and signer of the Declaration of Independence'. This last movement--at 10 minutes the longest of the three--is particularly delightful, brimming over with serene high spirits as it spins out dainty contrapuntal dialogs and idyllic elaborations--themselves 'wondrous free' as the composer points out--on Hopkinson's tune. Hoover's 11-minute Divertimento, scored for flute and string trio (like the Mozart flute quartets), shows off her neoclassic mode to best advantage. This neatly crafted item is in two very different movements. I is a catchy, insouciant Allegro that skips by with an elusive rhythmic lilt, II a complex structure interleaving skirling dance episodes with slow nocturnal music of considerable intensity. I've known and marveled at this inventive and captivating piece for two decades [when it was issued on LP]. Flutists looking for something commensurate to program along with the Mozart quartets take note!

"Canyon Echoes is a suite for flute and guitar based on an Apache story about a flute-playing boy and the girl who loves him but pines away and dies waiting for him to return. This is Hoover at her most evocative and exotic. Two short solo flute pieces,Winter Spirits andReflections, fill out the recital. The former is a much-ornamented invocation also based on Amerindian legend, the latter a set of variations on an outdoorsy Scandinavian tune. Like everything on this exceptionally rewarding release, these are nicely performed." Lehman, American Record Guide.

"Katherine Hoover's exuberant and joyful writing is completely unrestrained during the lighthearted Divertimento. Likewise, Dances and Variations is buoyantly tuneful, steadily maintaining a light and carefree demeanor, even during slower, more reflective passages. Inspired by Native American traditions and evoking the ancient origins of the flute, Winter Spirits is a perpetually searching, continuous melody. Another solo piece, Reflections, consists of free variations on an early Norwegian tune. The disc finishes with Canyon Echos, which musically portrays an Apache folk legend reminiscent of 'Romeo and Juliet'." Randy Nordschow, NewMusicBox, American Music Center.

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