ROUND TOP — “God is loud. A clangoring, clattering clamor. A roiling wind and pounding wave. A din of jangling bells and blasting thunder.
James MacMillan's "Veni, Veni, Emmanuel," an astonishing concerto for percussion and orchestra, exploded from the stage Saturday night at the International Festival-Institute at Round Top. A Led Zeppelin concert would have been tame by comparison.
One of the enduring truths in the arts is that the particular is the surest path to the universal — in this case, a human longing to overcome finitude through unification with a glorious and incorruptible realm beyond space and time. MacMillan's specific faith led him to address that...
Mike Greenberg, San Antonio Express News Senior Critic
“Concert takes off with “UFO”: Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring was dispatched on Tuesday with considerable élan by the Dallas Wind Symphony. But the real standout was Michael Daugherty’s UFO.
“Soloist Thomas Burritt entered the darkened Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center from the rear, cloaked in a wizard’s silver-accented black hooded robe. I don’t know what instrument he was playing, but, alternately struck and bowed, it yielded eerie clatters and slithers. The Second movement began with up-and-down gestures for xylophone and winds and worked itself into quite a frenzy. In the central movement “Flying,” shimmering outer-space effects gave way to a mélange of gamelan...
Scott Cantrell, Dallas Morning News
“…..Heavy Circles, for solo marimba by Joseph Harchanko, was written and dedicated to Thomas Burritt. The work is inspired by Kandinsky’s painting by the same name, and as the composer, “the circles.. suggest a sort of playfulness against the very dark and somber background.” Parts of “Heavy Circles” are reminiscent of Druckman’s “Reflections on the Nature of Water,” with the substantial technical challenges handled brilliantly by Burritt.”
- Scott Herring, Percussive Notes – Journal of the Percussive Arts Society
Scott Herring, Percussive Notes
There are storied educators, and there are dynamic performers, and then there are those who are destined to be both. Always in search of new music and new ways to share it with others, Thomas Burritt is today's percussionist.
Jeff Mulvihill - Mapex/Majestic Percussion
The score tells the percussionist to improvise and Burritt, in spite of the limited range of the instrument, did a surprisingly fine job.
Gregory Sullivan Isaacs