Evans, M.: The Adventures Of Florian
Format: COMPACT DISC
Vavrínek, Stanislav; Janácek Philharmonic Orchestra
On his seventh release on Navona Records, THE ADVENTURES OF FLORIAN, Michael J. Evans presents an epic, modern adaptation of Henry Beston’s fairytale of the same name. Over the course of four orchestral acts, Evans reframes the story as a tale of trans heroship, with Prince Florizel marrying Florian himself presenting as a boy, rather than revealing Florian as Isabella. Beautifully accessible and poignantly educational, THE ADVENTURES OF FLORIAN brings LGBT characters into the spotlight to improve their representation and educate audiences on the difference between sexual orientation and gender identity. Over the course of the tale, Florian and Florizel display true love for each other and come together as one. Evans enhances the piece’s narrative drive with dedicated instrumentation for each character. The oboe represents Isabella until her transition into Florian, at which point he is musically defined by the soprano sax. The powerful Enchanter is heard as a bass trombone, which contrasts with the english horn and shrieking clarinets which represent the Old Witch and her daughter. Finally, Prince Florizel is heard as a trumpet. Evans continues to show his compositional and thematic prowess through his use of themes for Florian and Florizel. Their respective themes are complete and can stand on their own, but when they come together they form a beautiful duet that represents their healthy, loving relationship. Accompanying the music and fairytale are more than a hundred full illustrations by Appoline Etienne, which depict the story and its joyous ending. The colorful, dreamlike imagery perfectly captures the uplifting theme, and helps make the album’s message understandable for all ages.