A Clarinetist’s Musical Postcard from the Rocky Mountains

· May 30, 2018, 7:06 am
Photo: Aspen trees Rocky Mountain National Park iStock(Photo: iStockphoto.com)
Aspen trees in Rocky Mountain National Park.

Here’s a collection that feels like a photo collage of majestic Colorado scenery.

Boulder clarinetist Kellan Toohey drew inspiration from his surroundings for his new album, "Scenes From Home." He assembled five pieces by composers who have lived here in Colorado, conjuring a portrait of the Rocky Mountain landscape.
Photo: Kellan Toohey clarinet(Photo courtesy of the artist)
The music is refreshingly direct in creating a sense of place. The most bracing piece is Conor Abbott Brown’s “Early Winter Spires.” Brown knows the dramatic possibilities of jagged peaks against a wide open sky from growing up in Boulder, and the nearby Flatirons feel very present in the bold musical gestures.
Andrew Halladay illustrates complex interplay of light and shadow while depicting “Five Scenes From Our Aspen Grove.”
Toohey succeeds in creating musical snapshots of Colorado’s natural beauty. The clarinetist also highlights the robust musical community that exists in the state.
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Toohey pulls off an impressive feat on this disc. Like a great nature photograph, this music evokes a deeper emotional connection to a special place.


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