Looking at the title and cover artwork of Louis Anthony deLise’s new release, one would think that it is all about romance and passion. Not that there is anything wrong with a deeply romantic album, but To Dance With You is about way more than rose-red feelings. It is romantic, but it is also about nature, friendship and the big questions in life. It is a collection of wonderful and deeply inspiring chamber music for harp and violin. It is impossible not to be moved by To Dance With You.
Louis Anthony deLise is an American composer, pianist, and percussionist. He was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and at age six moved with his family to rural Pennsylvania where he attended the public schools and began his music study. Louis’ first album as featured artist, Natural Light, was released in 2019. Also in 2019, Louis’ flute concerto, “Salone del Astor”, was named “Best Newly Published Mixed Duet” by the National Flute Association (NFA) and was premiered by flutists, Joan Sparks, at the NFA’s convention in Orlando, Florida. Dr. deLise was Adjunct Lecturer of Theory and Composition at the Boyer College of Music and Dance (in Philadelphia). A Gift of Moments followed in 2021. He is the author of “The Professional Songwriter”, a textbook on songwriting.
To Dance With You features John McMurtery on flute and Anne Sullivan on harp.
To Dance With You
To Dance With You is a 13-track long album. It starts with the title track. It doesn’t take long for the harp and violin to establish the neoclassical soundscape that makes this release into something remarkable and highly enjoyable. To Dance With You is a playful and dreamy track with a somewhat open ending that sets the stage for everything that follows. Check it out yourself:
Next out is the playful A Preponderance of Seventh. The one minute and forty seconds fly faster than you can say seven while listening to this inspired composition twist and turn. One of the highlights of this album is A Time for Peace. It might be the social and political situation at the moment, but the piece always gets me reflecting on the fact that peace is like food and water; when it is gone, you lack something vital in your life.
A Trot Through the Snow is something completely different! It captures the magic of snow perfectly, while Early January focuses more on ice and how the whole of nature is in a frozen sleep. Then spring comes along on In the Edge of the Water. The piece is beautiful beyond words. Bravo!
At this stage, we are introduced to little Lydian. The piece is lively and full of joy. Old fans will find Mosaic II and Natural Light to their liking. Spring Rain is magnificent! This part of the album is wonderfully contemplative. Three Little Dancers doesn’t do much to change this impression. It is a gentle and graceful dance deLise has in store for us. It is one of the longer pieces, close to four minutes.
Two of the best pieces are saved for last; The Music Box and Petite Fall Fanfare. They summarize what this album is; a magnificent mix of chamber music for harp and flute. There is not a dull moment here, every note is inspired and well-composed. Petite Fall Fanfare quickly found its way to my private, all-time favorite playlist. It makes me think of a Jim Bishop quote: “Autumn carries more gold in its pocket than all the other seasons.”
In conclusion: To Dance With You by Louis Anthony deLise is a terrific and heartwarming album. It is, as stated above, a deeply romantic album – although it is not limited to romantic feelings alone. It is a rich and rewarding neoclassical release that surprises on each listen. Like on a beautiful painting, I constantly find new details to appreciate. Its neoclassical sound gives it wide appeal way outside the New Age music realm.
Life is too short to miss out on a dance – at least a dance as existential and meaningful as this. Say Yes! to To Dance With You, and you will be swiped away guaranteed.
For more information and music samples, visit louisanthonydelise.com