Reviews

Charles Norman Mason 

...Mason's Senderos Que se Bifurcan... is, without doubt, one of the finest new clarinet chamber works of the past twenty years. Upstate Music (NY), vol. 2, Issue #1, Spring 2002, Katherine Porlington

Seeking to broaden its scope, the orchestra has allowed five talented emerging composers—including Anna Clyne, Jonathan Dawe, and Charles Mason—to challenge the basic concepts of orchestral composition. (Mason’s “Additions” for example, calls for members of the group to serenade the gathering audience with fragments of the piece as they arrive in Zankel Hall.) The project is under the firm musical direction of Jeffrey Milarsky. THE NEW YORKER: (April 28, p. 14).

”Additions,” by Charles Mason, offered a nearly seamless integration of electronic and acoustic sounds foreshadowed by musicians in the lobby and CD players in the bathrooms. The New York Times: Monday, April 28:

Friday night was an American Composers Orchestra concert at Zankel Hall, with works by Charles Mason, Jonathan Dawe, Anna Clyne, Peter Heller, Dan Trueman, and Ned McGowan. Charles Mason's "Additions" was lovely in the granular modern style… (Shermania Blog http://shermaniablog.blogspot.com/2008/04/music-art-and-dance-oh-my.html)


As with all of Mason's works "Daphne" was deftly constructed. Its intricate fabric of motifs is woven with a sure hand, its colors gauged by a sensitive ear and the entirety underscored by a firm sense of purpose." THE BIRMINGHAM NEWS, Nancy Raabe

"Hradcanska" for orchestra impressed me with its intelligence and energy. Bruce Polay, Music Director/Conductor of Knox-Galesburg Symphony.

"Pantograph" for solo piano and "Games" for violin, cello, and piano... thoroughly mastered...New Music was never so much fun. The Montgomery Independent, Fred Lippincott.

Charles Mason's piece is a vigorously rhythmic... piece. Sarah Cahill, KPFA (94.1 FM), San Francisco

Mason's pallet of composed sounds is one of his strong compositional signatures... this was a sometimes whimsical piece with sturdy backbone. Frederick Kaimann, THE BIRMINGHAM NEWS

...the two songs by Mason...the one was wonderfully lyrical, the other accented with anvil strokes. Oliver Roosevelt, THE BIRMINGHAM NEWS

Charles Mason's "The Blazing Macaw"... speaks in a softly sizzling, boldly original voice. Mason has created a splendid, vibrant work. Peter Burwasser, FANFARE Magazine. January 1993, p. 301.

There was much to admire in each of Mason's anthems in terms of musical structure and word-painting. Nancy Raabe, THE BIRMINGHAM NEWS

Mason's The Artist and His Model...balanced the quick and the dead quite nicely, making the resulting collaboration a highly charged rhythmic excursion...with well-paced variety in a driving tempo carriage that wound up with an ethereal harmonic fade--very effective. Kenneth Young, THE BUFFALO NEWS (New York).

Mason's brilliant "From Shook Foil" occupies a class of its own... it is charged with creativity. Nancy Raabe, THE BIRMINGHAM NEWS

[Mason's works] were brilliant, exciting, and extremely moving... Martin Gonzalez, C.F. Peters corporation.

BSC composer Charles Norman Mason has assembled an alluring and pristine collection of electronic vignettes titled "Gems." Its wide array of white-noise swishes, tinkling percussive sounds and metallic sound masses move inventively and intricately between the speakers, creating a montage of spatial interactions. Michael Huebner, Birmingham News, Oct. 18, 2001

Mason's "The Blazing Macaw" is full of invention. This is a wonderful work, funky and colorful. The interplay between the piano and the taped sounds is consistently ingenious, and Mason does not sacrifice structure for color. HIGH PERFORMANCE REVIEW, Vol. 10, #1, March 1993