Nice guys gather round a piano

Nice guys gather round a piano
“What Makes You Beautiful” from The Piano Guys
read more

Matthew McCright releases Gene Gutchë CD

Matthew McCright releases Gene Gutchë CD
Matthew McCright‘s advocacy of American piano music has brought him into collaboration with lots of composers and his standard bio starts with this list: Pauline Oliveros, Terry Riley, August Read Thomas, Paul Dresher, and Michael Gordon – some experimental and free thinkers, to be sure. So it was an interesting departure for McCright that his latest recording project was of music by Gene Gutche (1907-2000), a German...
read more

“The Eleanor Hovda Collection” on Innova

“The Eleanor Hovda Collection” on Innova
Two years ago I interviewed conductor Jeannine Wager and subsequently wrote on this site what seems to still be the only complete account of the last years of composer Eleanor Hovda (1940-2009).  During our conversation Wager, her companion of 20 years, was forthcoming but obviously still grieving. She told me that she would soon be leaving their Arkansas home and was planning to begin archiving Hovda’s studio in New...
read more

Fred Hersch, more than dreaming

Fred Hersch, more than dreaming
Fred Hersch isn’t a meditation guru. He’s a composer and jazz pianist.  But he does know something about that elusive goal of living in the moment. “If you think too far ahead you drop the ball. This is why tennis and jazz are very similar,” he says, in the documentary “The Lives of Fred Hersch.”  He continues, “you have to play what is in front of you and what appears, and react to it.” On Friday night he’ll...
read more

DeMare continues “Liaisons” with songs of Stephen Sondheim

DeMare continues “Liaisons” with songs of Stephen Sondheim
For the past two holiday seasons, fans of Broadway musicals have had special treats under the Christmas tree – the collected lyrics of Stephen Sondheim, issued in matching volumes during the past two autumns.  “Finishing A Hat” (volume 1) and “Look, I Made A Hat” (volume 2) are coffee table-size books that include not just the lyrics for legendary shows like “West Side Story,” “A Little Night Music” and...
read more

Concert review: Jeremy Denk in Schenectady, 12/2/11

Concert review:  Jeremy Denk in Schenectady, 12/2/11
Jeremy Denk, piano Union College Memorial Chapel, Schenectady December 2, 2011 Sometimes there’s just too darned much talking at classical concerts. Whether it’s welcoming the crowd, thanking the donors and pleading for more contributions, or explicating what’s about to happen in the music, all that verbiage gets tiresome. Yet along comes a musician like Jeremy Denk who’s almost as good with words as he is at playing...
read more

Del Tredici’s “Missing Towers”

Del Tredici’s “Missing Towers”
A movement from David Del Tredici‘s four-movement piano work “Gotham Glory” (2004) performed by the composer. Today at South Mountain Concerts in Pittsfield, Mass. DDT’s String Quartet No. 2 has its debut with the Orion String Quartet. And here’s the composer’s notes on “Gotham Glory”: Having lived and loved in New York for more than 40 years, I thought it time to celebrate...
read more

Thibaudet revels in Ravel at Tanglewood

Thibaudet revels in Ravel at Tanglewood
In a departure from recent tradition, the French piano virtuoso Jean-Yves Thibaudet won’t be making an appearance this summer at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center. But his local fans will have ample opportunity to catch him at Tanglewood. He’ll be appearing three times in the coming week performing the music of his countryman, Maurice Ravel. Thibaudet will perform all of Ravel’s solo piano works over...
read more

Craig Rutenberg, star accompanist

Craig Rutenberg, star accompanist
Most pianists who perform with singers don’t like to be thought of as playing second fiddle, so to speak.  That’s why there’s a growing trend to do away with the term “accompanist,” with its tag-along connotations, and instead call the folks at the keyboard “collaborators.” “That just drives me crazy,” says Craig Rutenberg. “It sounds like something you did when you were French and you worked with the...
read more

“Catch the Tiger” with pianist/inter-media composer Jaroslaw Kapuscinski

“Catch the Tiger” with pianist/inter-media composer Jaroslaw Kapuscinski
Eighty-eight keys just aren’t enough for Jaroslaw Kapuscinski. He knows his way around the black and white notes of a tradition piano keyboard plenty well, having studied at the Chopin Academy in his native Warsaw. But for the last 20 years he’s created and performed original works that combined the piano with video. Kapuscinski will appear at EMPAC on Saturday night (4/16) in a program titled “Catch the Tiger.” “I...
read more

« Previous Entries