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Prestidigitations - Zaimont: Piano Rags / Zaimont, Et Al


Release Date: 08/21/2007 
Label:  Msr   Catalog #: 1238   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Judith Lang Zaimont
Performer:  Immanuel DavisNanette Kaplan SolomonJudith Lang ZaimontJoanne Polk,   ... 
Orchestra/Ensemble:  American Ragtime Ensemble
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 0 Hours 58 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews



ZAIMONT Bubble-Up Rag. 1 Reflective Rag. 2 Judy’s Rag. 3 Serenade—To Music. 4 Lazy Beguine. 5 Hesitation Rag. 6 Sonata for Piano 4-hands, “ Snazzy” 7 Judith Zaimont (pn); Read more class="SUPER12">2,3,5,7 Immanuel Davis (fl); 1 Nanette Kaplan Solomon (pn); 1 Joanne Polk (pn); 6 Doris L. Kosloff (pn); 7 Elizabeth Ann Owens (fl); 8 David Reffkin, cond; 3,5 American Ragtime Ens 2,4,5 MSR 1238 (57:35)


Have you ever wondered what sort of response those prewar Carpathian peasants might have given Bartók if he had played his mature music for them? Anyone who’s taken a music-appreciation course knows that Bartók distilled their native idiom into a defining component of his compositional style. Those same students would undoubtedly testify that the result was not exactly folk music.


The current compilation (which bears the title, “Prestidigitations”) is Judith Zaimont’s homage to the “infectious” (her apt word) art of the rag. She has incorporated ragtime’s rhythms and some of its myriad idiosyncrasies into the creation of these seven pieces. (Note that Reflective Rag appears in three guises—as a piano solo; in an arrangement for clarinet, trumpet, violin, viola, cello, bass, piano, and drums; and as a duo for flute and piano.) However familiar those elements may be, the results are more rag-like than ragtime. She comes a lot closer to the mark than Stravinsky, who retrospectively and astutely characterized his Ragtime for 11 Instruments as so much “alien corn.” But while Bill Bolcom’s most ingenious explorations in the field come across as rags, Zaimont’s most swinging efforts project an unmistakable aura of concert music. Which is not to say that her prestidigitations are not entertaining; they are. Enjoy them as such. The performances must be presumed to be definitive, and the recording is just fine. Should you choose to play this disc at your next party, though, you might consider serving it with wine and cheese rather than with beer and chips. Cheers.


FANFARE: George Chien
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Works on This Recording

1. Bubble-up Rag by Judith Lang Zaimont
Performer:  Immanuel Davis (Flute), Nanette Kaplan Solomon (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 2001; USA 
2. Reflective Rag by Judith Lang Zaimont
Performer:  Judith Lang Zaimont (Piano)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  American Ragtime Ensemble
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1974-1975; USA 
Notes: Version: 2001 
3. Judy's Rag by Judith Lang Zaimont
Performer:  Judith Lang Zaimont (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1974-1975; USA 
4. Serenade - To Music by Judith Lang Zaimont
Orchestra/Ensemble:  American Ragtime Ensemble
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1981; USA 
5. Lazy Beguine by Judith Lang Zaimont
Performer:  Judith Lang Zaimont (Piano)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  American Ragtime Ensemble
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 2007; USA 
Notes: Arranger: David Reffkin. 
6. Hesitation Rag by Judith Lang Zaimont
Performer:  Joanne Polk (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1998; USA 
7. Sonata for Piano 4 hands "Snazzy" by Judith Lang Zaimont
Performer:  Doris Kosloff (Piano), Judith Lang Zaimont (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1972; USA 

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