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Shadows Of Silence / Leif Ove Andsnes


Release Date: 07/14/2009 
Label:  Emi Classics   Catalog #: 64182   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  György KurtágBent SorensenWitold LutoslawskiMarc-André Dalbavie
Performer:  Leif Ove Andsnes
Conductor:  Franz Welser-Möst
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bavarian Symphony OrchestraBavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 16 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

The Piano Concerto by Marc-André Dalbavie (b. 1961, France) was a co-commission of the BBC Proms, the Cleveland Orchestra and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Andsnes performed the world premiere with the BBC Symphony Orchestra/Jukka-Pekka Saraste at the 2005 Proms and subsequently performed the concerto with the Cleveland Orchestra, the Chicago Symphony/David Robertson and the Tokyo Philharmonic/Marc-André Dalbavie.

"I love working with him. I love his imagination." says Andsnes of Dalbavie. "He has such a colourful mind and always comes up with interesting thoughts and ideas which are very much reflected in his music. I love how one sound transforms itself into another through a musical chain of
Read more events. When he was resident composer in Risør in 2003, it was impressive how Dalbavie had it clear in his mind exactly what he wanted to hear." Preparing for the composition, Dalbavie met with Andsnes several times and heard him in concert often. “I've had a great experience with this pianist, his musicality, and powerful sound. He's both very strong and very soft, which is important to me. His sound is very lyrical, which I wanted to integrate into the concerto, and the lyrical sound of his playing is brought forth through the different materials. When he plays pianissimo, he doesn't make the sound low, but changes its colour. I was very surprised to find a pianist who could play so closely what I thought the music should sound like."

Following the performances with the Bayerischer Rundfunk Orchestra, the Abendzeitung wrote, “Pianist Leif Ove Andsnes convincingly played with energy and lyrical sensitivity. (...) the applause was just like after a Tchaikovsky (concerto), with great cheers for the soloist.”

The CD’s title work, The Shadows of Silence by the Danish composer Bent Sørensen (b. 1958), was commissioned by Carnegie Hall for performance by Leif Ove Andsnes in his prestigious 2004-2005 “Perspectives” series. "The Shadows of Silence is an engaging and unusually textured piece, filled with hushed, trembling sonorities drawn from the extremes of pitch at both ends of the keyboard. … evocative of an arctic landscape, with glistening watery surfaces stretching across vast spaces. Jagged chords slice through the calm, but there are also impressionistic washes of colour, infinite shades of white. … The music grows ruminative and halting as it drifts into the distance, blurring into silence. Mr. Andsnes played it with immense subtlety.” (The New York Times) Leif Ove Andsnes has said, “I play Shadows of Silence a lot in recitals because I love it so much. … It is very difficult … because [Sørensen] demands that you play the same notes many times, very fast but very soft. … there’s a kind of dreamlike landscape to it, which I really love being in. … There is one thing I have to do which is quite unusual: I have to hum along at the end of the piece. … When I played it in Carnegie Hall for the first time, the artistic administrator … offered me a vocal recital the next time…. which I’m not sure I will accept.”

Witold Lutos?awski's Piano Concerto, composed in 1987-88, is considered the great piano concerto of the second half of the 20th century. In four connected movements, it combines twelve-tone techniques, tonal and polytonal harmonies with hints of Chopin, Ravel, Bach and Eastern European folk music. “With its large, sweeping gestures and dramatic interplay between the soloist and the orchestra, the piano concerto pays homage to this most popular of concert music genres. Yet even while writing a public piece hardly less accessible than the concertos of Prokofiev, Lutos?awski finds ingenious ways to make the music fresh, original and intellectually challenging.” (The New York Times, reviewing a performance by Leif Ove Andsnes with the New York Philharmonic) The Times went on to describe Andsnes’s playing as “commanding, elegant, incisive, rich with wondrous colours and full of imagination.”

György Kurtág began his Játékok series (Játékok means Games in Hungarian) in 1973. When he had completed his Opus 7 in 1968, Kurtág had a case of ”writer’s block” and decided to set himself the task of analysing works by other composers such as Beethoven, Bartók, Schubert and Debussy. One result was his ongoing series Játékok, short works for piano solo or piano four hands in which Kurtag comments on the works of these aforementioned composers and on questions that he feels they left behind. The Játékok are witty, understated, informal works in which the composer plays with ideas and familiar sounds in unfamiliar ways. Andsnes has often included the works on his recital programmes and has chosen eight of them for this recording.
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Works on This Recording

1.
Játékok (Games), for piano: Part 1. 3/12. Thistle by György Kurtág
Performer:  Leif Ove Andsnes (Piano)
Period: Contemporary 
Written: 1973; Hungary 
Length: 0 Minutes 23 Secs. 
Notes: Audio Engineer: Arne Akselberg.
Audio Producer: John Fraser.
Composition written: 1975 - 1998. 
2.
Játékok (Games), for piano: Part 1. 3/14. Tumble-bunny by György Kurtág
Performer:  Leif Ove Andsnes (Piano)
Period: Contemporary 
Written: 1973; Hungary 
Length: 0 Minutes 20 Secs. 
Notes: Audio Engineer: Arne Akselberg.
Audio Producer: John Fraser.
Composition written: 1975 - 1998. 
3.
Játékok (Games), for piano: Evocation of Petrushka by György Kurtág
Performer:  Leif Ove Andsnes (Piano)
Length: 0 Minutes 48 Secs. 
Notes: Audio Engineer: Arne Akselberg.
Audio Producer: John Fraser.
Composition written: 1975 - 1998. 
4.
Játékok (Games), for piano: Book 5 No. 9, Aus der Ferne, Alfred Schlee zum 80. Geburstag by György Kurtág
Performer:  Leif Ove Andsnes (Piano)
Period: Contemporary 
Written: 1973; Hungary 
Length: 1 Minutes 37 Secs. 
Notes: Audio Engineer: Arne Akselberg.
Audio Producer: John Fraser.
Composition written: 1975 - 1998. 
5.
The Shadows of Silence by Bent Sorensen
Performer:  Leif Ove Andsnes (Piano)
Written: Denmark 
Length: 15 Minutes 57 Secs. 
Notes: Audio Engineer: Arne Akselberg.
Audio Producer: John Fraser.
Composition written: Denmark (2003 - 2004). 
6.
Lullabies for Piano by Bent Sorensen
Performer:  Leif Ove Andsnes (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 2000; Denmark 
Length: 3 Minutes 13 Secs. 
Notes: Audio Engineer: Arne Akselberg.
Audio Producer: John Fraser. 
7.
Játékok (Games), for piano: Part 1. 6/25. Les Adieux (in Janáceks Manier) (1992) by György Kurtág
Performer:  Leif Ove Andsnes (Piano)
Period: Contemporary 
Written: 1973; Hungary 
Length: 1 Minutes 41 Secs. 
Notes: Audio Engineer: Arne Akselberg.
Audio Producer: John Fraser.
Composition written: 1975 - 1998. 
8.
Játékok (Games), for piano: Sirens of the Deluge by György Kurtág
Performer:  Leif Ove Andsnes (Piano)
Length: 0 Minutes 34 Secs. 
Notes: Audio Engineer: Arne Akselberg.
Audio Producer: John Fraser.
Composition written: 1975 - 1998. 
9.
Játékok (Games), for piano: Apocryphal hymn by György Kurtág
Performer:  Leif Ove Andsnes (Piano)
Conductor:  Franz Welser-Möst
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bavarian Symphony Orchestra
Length: 0 Minutes 55 Secs. 
Notes: Audio Engineer: Arne Akselberg.
Audio Producer: John Fraser.
Composition written: 1975 - 1998. 
10.
Játékok (Games), for piano: Scraps of a colinda melody faintly recollected by György Kurtág
Performer:  Leif Ove Andsnes (Piano)
Length: 1 Minutes 57 Secs. 
Notes: Audio Engineer: Arne Akselberg.
Audio Producer: John Fraser.
Composition written: 1975 - 1998. 
11.
Concerto for Piano "For Krystian Zimerman" by Witold Lutoslawski
Performer:  Leif Ove Andsnes (Piano)
Conductor:  Franz Welser-Möst
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Bavarian Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1988; Poland 
Length: 24 Minutes 25 Secs. 
Notes: Audio Engineer: Klemens Kamp.
Audio Producer: Bernhard Albrecht. 
12.
Concerto for Piano by Marc-André Dalbavie
Performer:  Leif Ove Andsnes (Piano)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra
Written: by 2005 
Length: 23 Minutes 25 Secs. 
Notes: Audio Engineer: Klemens Kamp.
Audio Producer: Bernhard Albrecht. 

Sound Samples

Lullabies
Concerto for Piano & Orchestra: 1. Satz
Concerto for Piano & Orchestra: 2. Presto
Concerto for Piano & Orchestra: 3.
Concerto for Piano & Orchestra: 4.
Hommage ŕ Farkas Ferenc (3) (Evocation of Petrushka) Lendülettel - Vivacissimo
Aus der Ferne (for Alfred Schlee's 80th birthday) - A Voice in the Distance
Les Adieux (in Janáceks Manier)
Vizözön-szirénák (Sirens of the Deluge)
Apokrif himnusz (Apocryphal Hymn)
Hommage á Farkas Ferenc (2) (Scraps of a colinda melody - faintly recollected)
Concerto for Piano and orchestra: I.
Concerto for Piano and orchestra: II.
Concerto for Piano and orchestra: III.
The Shadows of Silence

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