Garden of Dreams

Garden of Dreams

by Jerry JunkinJerry Junkin


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Using a tonally free but conservative language, David Maslanka writes music that is evocative and gentle-spirited, although occasionally his gestures drift dangerously close to an imitation of John Adams. The composer's devotion to Bach's chorales, and his sometimes veiled, sometimes explicit use of them may account for the serenity that characterizes much of his work. "A Child's Garden of Dreams" is a wonderful name for a piece of music, and its music delivers in its conjuring of hazy, childlike dreamscapes, although the tranquility of most of the music raises the question: where are the nightmares? Unfortunately, the composer has attached explicitly visual dream images collected by Jung to the movements, and they prove a distraction more than a complement to the musical imagery. They may have been useful in triggering the composer's imagination, but the specificity of Jung's descriptions creates certain expectations in the listener, who then finds him or herself in the position of evaluating the music's effectiveness at matching the detailed descriptions, rather than simply listening. Maslanka's fourth "Symphony" inhabits a similar musical landscape, but as a symphony it appropriately offers more contrasts and a broader spectrum of moods, including an exuberant finale. It includes a playful section of jazzed-up Bach that sounds silly and out of place, but apart from that, the symphony is attractive and colorfully orchestrated. The Dallas Wind Symphony, under Jerry Junkin, plays with precision, conviction, and high energy.

Product Details

Release Date: 11/14/2006
Label: Reference Recordings
UPC: 0030911110826
catalogNumber: 108
Rank: 190281


  1. A Child's Garden of Dreams, for wind orchestra, Nos 1-5, complete
  2. In Memoriam
  3. Symphony No. 4 for symphonic winds

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