Maali (2016)

“Also on the program is Maali, a concerto for oboe, clarinet, horn and bassoon specially commissioned, from Australian composer Andrew Schultz. Young has been in constant communication with the composer regarding factors such as balance and the Perth Concert Hall’s superb acoustics. “We talk about historically informed,” Young says. “Here, we can be directly informed by a living composer.” [William Yeoman, “Twenty Years Young,” West Australian, 26 July 2017]

 “Young is an exciting conductor whoo…favours a robust approach to interpretation….this account of Schultz’s attractive, finely-crafted Maali was a case in point. Here the talents of the WASO stalwarts Peter Facer (oboe), Allan Meyer (clarinet), Adam Mikulicz (bassoon), and David Evans (horn) were allowed to blaze forth individually, collectively and as part of the often expansive orchestral texture.

This was as much to do with Schultz’s ear for melody and timbre as with Young’s acute sense of ensemble and sound-blanace.” [William Yeoman, “Young at heart of melody,” West Australian, 7 August 2017]

“This concert also features a brilliantly thought-out commission from the orchestra, a concerto for four soloists drawn from the orchestra’s ranks, composed by Andrew Schultz. Listen to Young discuss her memories here: “The players themselves have had an input into the writing”, Young explains. “So it’s really something that the orchestra feels they, and rightly so, have real ownership of.” [Duncan Yardley, “Simone Young’s 20 Years with WASO,” ABC Classic FM, 12 August 2017]

“Maali was commissioned by the West Australian Symphony Orchestra (WASO) and its name is the Noongar word for the large black swans synonymous with the Swan River and Perth region. It is an orchestral work in the sinfonia concertante style, which in this case features a small group of woodwind soloists whose interplay with the orchestra is highlighted. There are three parts, each inspired by the maali and their behaviour, and without getting too literal, the woodwind soloists could certainly be aligned with them (timbres also not unlike the sound made by the maali) and the orchestra with their river home.

The darting, sinewy oboe and clarinet lines in “Lively, Fast and Playful” turn languid and rippling in the second “Slow, Dreamlike” movement, all the while interspersed with watery splashes of orchestral colour. In the final movement, the maali are “Fast, Joyous”, to which I would add regal and triumphant as the work builds to an intense, full-bodied climax. The magnificent acoustics of Perth’s modernist Concert Hall are on show in this live recording with internationally renowned Australian conductor Simone Young, whose precise, nuanced direction produces typically high calibre results, as the thunderous audience response to this performance testifies.” [Lisa MacKinney, “Not your usual swansong: Andrew Schultz celebrates the maali, Perth’s black swans,” Limelight, 7 April 2021]