Michael Fine: Chamber Symphony in Prague

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Michael Fine’s Chamber Symphony for eleven orchestra soloists started with a jazzy trumpet solo idea that began playing in his head and wouldn’t let go till he wrote it down and gave it a context. This expanded into four movements with challenging solos for each instrument…   

Those who have heard it recognized the influence of the neo-classical Stravinsky; a friend of Darius Milhaud’s widow who heard the piece thought Fine was channeling Milhaud. The score was successfully premiered in 2019 with an all-star group of instrumentalists, under the direction of Scott Yoo. Fine was particularly pleased when Emmanuel Villaume offered to give the piece its European debut with the Prague Philharmonia, a superb ensemble that he has been producing recordings with for thirty years.

The performance was scheduled in the Philharmonia’s prestigious Lobkowicz Castle series, but had to be postponed twice due to COVID restrictions. Michael Fine was touched by the Maestro’s and orchestra’s commitment to the piece as it was quickly rescheduled for their first streaming concert of the New Year, opening a program which will also include music by Mozart, Wagner, and Richard Strauss. Excellent company.

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