Romeo Cascarino, a virtually self-taught Philadelphia composer, was fiercely dedicated to the principles of tonality and the infinite beauty of orchestral color. His four orchestral works, written between 1948 and 1960, as well as the two chamber works also heard on this disc, were all inspired by literary and mythological sources. The programmatic ballet Pygmalion and the long adagio Portrait of Galatea embellish the Greek legend in rich harmonic detail. The rhythmically-urgent Prospice resulted from a reading of Browning’s epic poem, and his buoyant The Acadian Land has at its source Longfellow’s imaginary paradise. Portrait of Galatea, Prospice and The Acadian Land are receiving their first complete performances on this recording.
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