Multi-GRAMMY® nominated pianist Nadia Shpachenko’s new release,"The Poetry of Places" features World Premiere recordings of works for solo piano, for two pianos , percussion, electronics, voice and toy piano in a fascinating mélange inspired by great architecture and places. The eight compositions monumentalize places so wildly diverse as the Copland House in Cortlandt, NY, The American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore, Louis Kahn’s National Assembly Buildings in Bangladesh, Newgrange Ancient Temple in Ireland, and Frank Gehry’s House in Santa Monica. Included is a significant new work from Andrew Norman, "Frank’s House" , for two pianos and percussion, and another large work from Nina C. Young,Read more "Kolokol", for two pianos and electronics (a ‘fantasy’ inspired by Russian Orthodox Church Bells). Six solo works, by Amy Beth Kirsten, Hannah Lash, James Matheson, Harold Meltzer, Lewis Spratlan, and Jack Van Zandt, were written specifically for this project, using very different approaches and sonic means in their responses to their chosen spaces.
This collection of eight new works, all receiving world premiere recordings, draws inspiration from significant architecture as well as place. Featuring a broad range of contemporary voices, it's a scintillating mix of daring sound, genuine beauty, and a commodity too often missing from the new music world: humor. The CD concludes, appropriately, with a chorus of Russian Orthodox bells (think of the Coronation Scene from Boris Godonov), created by pianos and electronic renditions of actual church bells—in this case, the Danilov Bells installed at Harvard University. It sounds like a celebration, as does the cumulative effect of this remarkably diverse and thoroughly engaging collection. Nadia Shpachenko is a great friend and champion of new music.
Bangladeshby Lewis Spratlan Performer:
Nadia Shpachenko (Piano)
Kolokolby Nina C. Young Performer:
Joanne Pearce Martin (Piano),
Nadia Shpachenko (Piano),
Nina C. Young (Electronics)
Average Customer Review: ( 1 Customer Review )
Projections into special placesMarch 11, 2019By Dean Frey See All My Reviews"In his 1873 essay "The School of Giorgione" Walter Pater famously said "All art constantly aspires towards the condition of music," but of course his argument is much more nuanced than this sound-byte, as cool as it is. "Although," he says, "each art has thus its own specific order of impressions, and an untranslatable charm, while a just apprehension of the ultimate differences of the arts is the beginning of aesthetic criticism; yet it is noticeable that, in its special mode of handling its given material, each art may be observed to pass into the condition of some other art, by what German critics term an Anders-streben a partial alienation from its own limitations, through which the arts are able, not indeed to supply the place of each other, but reciprocally to lend each other new forces." Those new forces are evident in each of these World Premiere works by eight composers, in this marvellous disc from pianist Nadia Shpachenko. Each of the works is about a special place, with music interacting with a wide range of human activities: fine and applied arts (architecture and design), the heritage arts and the natural world. "Part of my aim as an artist," says composer Amy Beth Kirsten, "is to project myself, through meditation and imagination, into another place so I might find the music that lives there." Between them, Kirsten and Shpachenko project us into the American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore, designed by Rebecca Swanston and Alex Castro. I happen to share a fondness for and a deep admiration of some of the architects of these special places, especially Frank Gehry and Louis Kahn. But each of these works is memorable, and beautifully played by Shpachenko on a Steinway grand piano and, memorably, on a toy piano, a Schoenhut 37 ­key Traditional Deluxe Spinet. As well she has excellent support from Joanne Pearce Martin in four-hand pieces, and percussionists Nick Terry and Cory Hills. This is a marvellous project, well worth exploring."Report Abuse