Percussion Symphony sample
performed by Synergy/Sydney Symphony Orchestra/Edo de Waart
(Symphony No. 5)
4 solo percussion and orchestra
220.127.116.11-18.104.22.168- hp, strings
duration 26:00 © 1995 Faber Music
Performed by Synergy Percussion and the Sydney Symphony Orchestra on the ABC Classics CD Carl Vine - Complete Symphonies 1-6
Performed by Synergy Percussion and the Sydney Symphony Orchestra on the ABC Classics CD The Glad Tomorrow
on iTunes:  
Buy a copy of the score
Also see: Orchestral
Percussion Symphony began life as a commission for the Synergy percussion ensemble. They then thought it would be more interesting as a concerto-style work for four percussion and orchestra, and the ABC kindly adopted the work as a commission for the Sydney Symphony Orchestra featuring Synergy. Although a quartet concerto in intent, the finished work sits more comfortably as an extension of my previous four symphonies, and is thus titled Percussion Symphony (Symphony No. 5).
From the first sketches the work was to be in five movements featuring a heavily rhythmic opening and a Tarantella finale. These two prominent features remain, although the middle three movements (originally slow-fast-slow) have been absorbed into a single extended slow movement with a rapid bridge at its centre.
The work was commissioned by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation with financial assistance from the Performing Arts Board of the Australia Council.
Its appeal is considerable and direct. The main body of its first section rides on energetic, syncopated dance-like rhythms, often with a Latin flavour. The middle, generally slower, section revolves around a core of instrumental dissension . . . Vine's invention is brilliantly appropriate for his purposes. [Roger Covell, Sydney Morning Herald, Mar 20, 1995]