A collection of musical gems by great contemporary composers of the minimalist and postminimalist trend. Music of Steve Reich (Vermont Counterpoint, New York Counterpoint - first recording of the saxophone version), Arvo Pärt (Pari Intervallo), Hans Otte (Eins), Ludovico Einaudi (Quattro Passi), Henryk Mikołaj Górecki (For you Ann Lill, Op.58), skilfully interpreted by Andrea Ceccomori and Goffredo Degli Esposti on the flutes, Paul Wehage on the saxophones, Cecilia Chailly on harp and Fabrizio Ottaviucci on piano.
This CD contains seven cycles of piano miniatures which are described as preludes. All of them are by Polish composers and date from the second half of the twentieth century. In stylistic terms, the prelude is a fairly homogenous genre and yet a more thorough analysis makes it possible to notice a rich spectrum of compositional devices and ways of shaping the musical material as well as the means of artistic expression. A disk of 33 short piano pieces, written by seven different composers over the space of 41 years might seem a daunting prospect yet this is a very enjoyable and fascinating collection of pieces, which makes for very pleasant listening.
Mahan Esfahani’s new album“Time Present and Time Past” is an eclectic programme fusing Baroque with Minimalism – and the first harpsichord album DG has released in over 30 years! Gramophone Award winner Mahan explores the relationship between two musical genres which are 300 years apart, yet emphasizing its similarities by playing all pieces on period instruments – which has never been done before with the Reich and Gorecki pieces.
The essay in the program booklet for this release of Górecki's String Quartet No. 3 (…songs were sung), makes much of a supposed caesura in Górecki's creative output following the phenomenal success of Nonesuch's 1992 release of this Third Symphony, with soprano Dawn Upshaw, which elevated him practically to the level of a pop star. The essay implies that his meteoric rise to being one of the most famous and popular contemporary composers may have produced a creative crisis that caused him to wait until 2005 to finally deliver the score of his Third Quartet, which he had written in the winter of 1994-1995. In fact, Górecki's sudden notoriety seems to have had little effect on his creativity; between 1993 and 2004, he wrote 16 opus numbers.