- Mark Greenfest, New Music Connoisseur
This arrangement of Igor Stravinsky's The Rite of Spring for Fireworks is breath-taking. Never has the Rite been played with such edge and verve. The group's daring conductorless performance of the work continues to wow audiences everywhere, and remains the ensemble's most requested and most popular work.
Fireworks looks and sounds like a rock band, but performs with the virtuosity and sensitivity of a classical chamber music ensemble.
Embracing the richness of today's diverse musical environment, Fireworks moves freely across categorical boundaries, pursuing the highest caliber of performance regardless of style. Distinctions between genres have little meaning to the members of Fireworks. Instead, eclecticism is a way of life. Though classically trained, each of the ensemble members played rock, jazz, and world music from an early age. As a result, the variety of their programming is not forced; it is a natural consequence of their shared tastes and backgrounds. The apparently disparate styles that the group plays are simply dialects of a single musical language.
The group thrives on the excitement of exploring unfamiliar territory, developing the performance standard for contemporary works, and formulating unique interpretations of classic repertoire. Each season Fireworks presents new pieces by emerging composers; it has premiered ten pieces in its first three seasons. The ensemble is well-known for its striking arrangements and interpretations of earlier classical repertoire, ranging from J. S. Bach's The Art of the Fugue to Stravinsky's The Rite of Spring. Its revitalizations provide a contemporary and unbiased entree into these masterpieces for new listeners and a fresh perspective on the time-honored classics for established audiences.
Writing about a recent performance in Hartford, composer and critic Robert Carl summed it up well: "This simply has to be heard to be believed; the music sounds completely contemporary in this orchestration, and one hears things one never has before. It's a gamble that triumphs."
Check out the artist's website:
1. Part I: The Adoration of the Earth - Introduction
2. The Augurs of Spring (Dances of the Young Girls)
3. Game of Abduction
4. Spring Rounds
5. Games of the Rival Tribes
6. Procession of the Wise Elder
7. Kiss of the Earth
8. Dance of the Earth
9. Part II: The Sacrifice - Introduction
10. Mystic Circles of the Young Girls
11. Glorification of the Chosen One
12. Summoning of the Ancestors
13. Ritual of the Ancestors
14. Sacrificial Dance