Kamran Ince: Passion and Dreams

Kamran Ince: Passion and Dreams

An architect's prayer
Kamran Ince
Present Music
Kamran Ince
Kevin Stalheim
Catalog Number: 
new classical

Milwaukee, WI

Release Date: 
Jun 24, 2016
Liner Notes: 
1 CD
One Sheet: 

Founded in 1982 by Kevin Stalheim, Milwaukee’s Present Music has been a champion of new music, working closely with many of the nation’s most exciting and important composers to craft a body of work that grows to 10 albums with the release of Passion and Dreams. It is the award-winning ensemble’s second on innova (after In White) to focus on the work of Turkish-American composer Kamran Ince, with whom the group has had a 23-year relationship, commissioning 10 pieces by him and performing a third of his complete repertoire.

Passion and Dreams opens with “Dreamlines,” commissioned by the Turkish Chamber of Architects for their 100th Anniversary in 2008. It is, fittingly, an architect’s prayer, recited in hushed tones over trembling, irregular unisons in harp, piano and vibraphone. The nine-part “Zamboturfidir” explores diverse sonic spaces from the thump and grind of heavy industry to a soothing chorale that slowly comes unhinged. The album closes with “Two Step Passion,” a relentlessly driving Turkish danse macabre that gets upended by the clatter and bang of metallic percussion.

Throughout, Ince’s compositions continue their work of synthesizing the energy and rawness of Turkish and Balkan folk music, the spirituality of Byzantine and Ottoman court music, and the traditions of European art music and American popular music. The recording sessions of Passion and Dreams were led by Ince himself, and he also supervised the final mixing and editing of the album. A true collaboration between composer and ensemble, Present Music’s latest solidifies their place as one of the country’s foremost new music ensembles.



"The influence of Turkish music on Turkish-American composer Karman Ince‘s work brightens his intriguing, rewarding, and often fun pieces with vivid color. ... ['Dreamline'] is a triumph of sonority over melody and an expansion of the “exotic” into the universal. ... ['Asumani']  climbs to heights of breathy passion, then descends to dark depths in a central solo-cello passage, before subsiding into contemplation. ... 'Fortuna Sepio Nos' ('Lady Luck Protect Us') ... evokes the capriciousness of the sea; you can hear in the squealing clarinet the creaking of wooden beams on a sailing ship in a storm, in the roiling piano chords the crashing of the waves. The musicians of Present Music do wonders with texture. ... While fully confident in his own joyfully experimental sensibility, Ince is a confirmed musical citizen of the world. ... [T]he intellectually and emotionally muscular Passions and Dreams rewards multiple listens." [FULL ARTICLE]
Jon Sobel


"...But this is not pure improvisation, as the seventh movement illustrates, with its tightly controlled syncopated rhythms, which the entire group plays in lockstep. "Two Step Passion” brings it full circle with a middle eastern inflected dance number. If you like classical with a world music feel, this may be of interest to you." [FULL ARTICLE]