Holiday Shop


WGBH Radio WGBH Radio theclassicalstation.org

Mexican Piano Concertos

Zyman / Corona / Nuremberg Symphony
Release Date: 08/27/2013 
Label:  Tyx Art   Catalog #: 13024   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Samuel ZymanJosé Rolón
Performer:  Claudia Corona
Conductor:  Gregor Bühl
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 0 Hours 58 Mins. 

In Stock: Usually ships in 24 hours.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews



ZYMAN Piano Concerto 1. ROLÓN Piano Concerto, op. 42. 1 El Festin de los Enanos 1 Claudia Corona (pn); Gregor Bühl, cond; Nuremberg SO TYXART 13024 (58:33)


It is always gratifying when musicians seek out obscure works to record, thereby broadening our knowledge of the repertoire. Read more Although I have listened to many anthologies of 20th-century Mexican music, José Rolón (1876–1945) has never come to my attention before. He was a pianist, teacher, orchestra founder, and composer who studied in Paris with, among others, Paul Dukas and Nadia Boulanger. His two works on this disc reveal a French influence in their orchestral finesse and polish, combined with the rhythms and melodic contours of Mexican folk music. Along with this large-scale Concerto he wrote symphonic poems, a Symphony, and a String Quartet, all of which I would very much like to hear. (One movement of the Quartet is accessible on YouTube, but there does not seem to be a complete recording available.)


The Concerto, begun in 1928 but not completed until 1935, is in three movements, played without a break. It has been performed rarely if at all since its 1936 premiere. For this recording pianist Claudia Corona revised and clarified the orchestral parts—a true labor of love. The work abounds in Lisztian figuration and colorful orchestral textures; the Piano Concerto it reminds me of is that by Khachaturian, composed around the same time, except of course that the themes have a Mexican rather than Armenian flavor. Structurally it is somewhat ramshackle, but its high spirits and the profusion of ideas keep it interesting. Rather like certain works of Villa-Lobos, you simply have to relax and go with it. Corona and the Nuremberg forces under Bühl attack the work with all the gusto it requires, especially the frenzied closing section.


The eight-minute symphonic scherzo Feast of the Dwarfs, op. 30, is built on a syncopated rhythmic figure (a triplet followed by a duplet), which the composer dresses up in sophisticated orchestral textures and develops skillfully. Dukas’s influence is obvious here, although the piece is no mere imitation. Again the mood is joyous.


Samuel Zyman (b. 1956) is the more familiar name. Born and educated initially in Mexico, he now resides in the U.S. and has taught at Juilliard since 1987. This Piano Concerto may be an expanded arrangement of an earlier Concerto for Piano and Chamber Orchestra; the latter is the only Piano Concerto mentioned in Zyman’s list of published works. That chamber concerto was recorded in 1989 (by Mirian Conti), whereas this new recording is advertised as the premiere of the “symphonic version.” It was first played by Corona in concert in 2005. Again in three movements, it is similarly a large-scale showpiece but more tightly structured and tougher than the Rolón. The piano’s relentless scale passages in the first movement and the somewhat monolithic lyricism of the second both bring to mind the Concerto by Chávez (which recently received an excellent new recording, coupled with solo works by Zyman and others: see reviews by Peter Burwasser and myself in Fanfare 37:1). Zyman is warmer than Chávez, and this warmth comes to the fore in the vivacious Presto movement that closes the work. That final movement also contains a quiet, introverted passage of lyrical beauty for the piano, before scampering off towards the abrupt final cadence.


I cannot over-emphasize the care and zest with which these musicians approach this enjoyable program, and the recording quality is excellent. Without question, this disc is a delightful discovery.


FANFARE: Phillip Scott
Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Piano Concerto by Samuel Zyman
Performer:  Claudia Corona (Piano)
Conductor:  Gregor Bühl
Period: Contemporary 
Date of Recording: 02/2013 
Venue:  Musiksaal in der Kongresshalle, Nürnberg 
Length: 24 Minutes 35 Secs. 
2.
El Festín de los Enanos, symphonic scherzo for orchestra, Op. 30 by José Rolón
Performer:  Claudia Corona (Piano)
Conductor:  Gregor Bühl
Period: Modern 
Written: 1923 
Date of Recording: 02/2013 
Venue:  Musiksaal in der Kongresshalle, Nürnberg 
Length: 7 Minutes 57 Secs. 
3.
Piano Concerto, Op. 42 by José Rolón
Performer:  Claudia Corona (Piano)
Conductor:  Gregor Bühl
Period: Modern 
Date of Recording: 02/2013 
Venue:  Musiksaal in der Kongresshalle, Nürnberg 
Length: 25 Minutes 56 Secs. 

Customer Reviews

Be the first to review this title
Review This Title
Review This Title Share on Facebook




YOU MUST BE A SUBSCRIBER TO LISTEN TO ARKIVMUSIC STREAMING.
TRY IT NOW FOR FREE!
Sign up now for two weeks of free access to the world's best classical music collection. Keep listening for only $19.95/month - thousands of classical albums for the price of one! Learn more about ArkivMusic Streaming
Aleady a subscriber? Sign In