Martin Jones | American Piano Series, Vol. 4: Music by Ingrid Arauco, Kent Holliday, Tim Melbinger

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American Piano Series, Vol. 4: Music by Ingrid Arauco, Kent Holliday, Tim Melbinger

by Martin Jones

British virtuoso pianist Martin Jones brings world premiere performances of contemporary classical music by some of the most exciting young composers working today. Hear ground-breaking music people are talking about.
Genre: Classical: Piano solo
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  Song Share Time Download
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1. Sonata No. 3: I. Restless
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2. Sonata No. 3: II. Flowing
2:50 $0.99
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3. Sonata No. 3: III. Intense
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4. Sonata for Piano: I. Risoluto
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5. Sonata for Piano: II. Sherzo
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6. Sonata for Piano: III. Largo
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7. Sonata for Piano: IV. Allegro
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8. 12 Preludes: I. Vigoroso
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9. 12 Preludes: II. Luminoso
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10. 12 Preludes: III. Amabile
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11. 12 Preludes: IV. Scherzando
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12. 12 Preludes: V. Lamentoso
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13. 12 Preludes: VI. Comodo
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14. 12 Preludes: VII. Ballabile
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15. 12 Preludes: VIII. Teneramente
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16. 12 Preludes: IX. Con brio
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17. 12 Preludes: X. Semplice
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18. 12 Preludes: XI. Drammatico
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19. 12 Preludes: XII. Saltando
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20. Incantations from the Popol Vuh
10:10 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.

ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
PnOVA American Piano Series volume 4 presents new music in a world premiere performance by Martin Jones. Martin Jones has been one of Britain’s most highly regarded solo pianists since first coming to international attention in 1968 when he received the Dame Myra Hess Award. That same year he made his London debut at the Queen Elizabeth Hall and his New York debut at Carnegie Hall. He has since been in demand for recitals and concerto performances on both sides of the Atlantic. He is a prolific recording artist and his many discs for Nimbus Records include the complete works of 17 composers including Mendelssohn, Brahms, Debussy, Grainger, Szymanowski and many first recordings of Spanish music. He has recorded the complete piano and concerto music of Richard Rodney Bennett for Metronome Records as well as many chamber music discs. The latest issue will be the complete works of Franz Reizenstein for Lyrita Records and Roger Ducasse for Nimbus Records. Future projects include two concertos by Francis Shaw and piano works by Graham Hair. This recording marks his second release on the PnOVA Recordings label as the third volume in the PnOVA American Piano Music Series.

Ingrid Arauco’s music “opens virtuosity to an inspection that reveals wit, passion, and deep aspiration” (The Philadelphia Inquirer). Arauco’s principal teachers were Robert Hall Lewis at Goucher College, and George Crumb, George Rochberg, Richard Wernick and C. Jane Wilkinson at the University of Pennsylvania. She has received awards or fellowships from the American Guild of Organists, Yaddo, and the MacDowell Colony, and commissions from Mélomanie, the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society and the Kindler Foundation in the Library of Congress. Her works have been featured at Oundle International Organ Week, Festival “Compositores de Hoje” in Rio de Janeiro and the Festival de Música Contemporánea de La Habana. Arauco’s compositions are published by Theodore Presser and Hinshaw. She is currently Professor of Music at Haverford College.

Kent Holliday is a native of St. Paul, Minnesota, and began piano studies with his father at age five. He received a B.A. in music and philosophy at Hamline University in 1962, and an M.A. and Ph.D. in composition-theory from the University of Minnesota in 1964 and 1968. His major composition teachers were Paul Fetler and Dominick Argento at the University of Minnesota, Pietro Grossi, S2FM Studio De Fonologia, Florence, Italy, and Witold Szalonek, Hochschule der Kunst, Berlin, Germany. Holliday
taught at the University of Southern Colorado and Colorado State University. He is currently Professor Emeritus of Music at Virginia Tech. Holliday is a five-time winner of the Virginia Music Teachers Association Composition Competition, the Delaware New Music Award, the Alienor Competition, and the Barto Prize.

Timothy Melbinger resides in Hollidaysburg, Pennsylvania. He earned a Ph.D. in composition/theory at Brandeis University, where he studied with Martin Boykan, David Rakowski and Yehudi Wyner and he holds degrees from the University of California at Irvine. His works have been recorded on the Albany, Centaur, PnOVA and NineWinds labels. Performances in the United
States feature Speculum Musicae, ECCE, the Radius Ensemble, Arcadian Winds, Auros Group for New Music, the Altoona Sym-
phony Orchestra, soloists Martin Jones and Andrey Kasparov. Accolades include an Aaron Copland Award, a California Octagon
Prize, selection as an Alea III Competition finalist, commissions from the Massachusetts Music Teachers Association and Society of Composers, Inc. He currently teaches at Penn State Altoona.

The first movement of Piano Sonata No. 3 (Holliday), dedicated to pianist Martin Jones, is in sonata-allegro form. It contrasts a restless opening theme with a second motive, marked mesto-molto espressivo. The second movement is designated as flowing, with legato and rubato passages. It strives to be in lyrical contrast to the kinetic dynamism of the first movement. The third movement, intense in its toccata-like rapidity of notes, is once again full of virtuosic scalar and arpeggio passages and is ebullient in its conclusion in the key of C Major. This recording presents the world premiere.

Sonata for Piano (Arauco) was commissioned by the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society in celebration of its 30th anniversary. For this occasion the composer imagined a piece, which would employ a variety of textures, from thickly intense chords to delicate strands of sound; emotionally, too, “I wished to embrace a range of feelings. In short, I was striving for a broadly encompassing work, one that would use the piano in a rich and bold way.” The Sonata is in four movements (Risoluto – Scherzo - Largo ed espressivo - Allegro con spirito), with the first movement establishing a fundamental harmonic tension between two identical chord structures positioned a half-step apart which, introduced and developed at the outset, create friction and energy. The friction is never truly resolved in favor of either chord. Rather, these sonorities are balanced in various ways. The momentum generated by the first movement is played out first as a quick, thinly-drawn scherzo, then as a slow, lyrical set of variations, and finally as a fugue, in which variants of the two opening harmonies of the work appear linearly and continue jostling for dominance, though in a generally more light-hearted manner than at the beginning of the piece. Sonata for Piano received its premiere by Marcantonio Barone in January 2016, at Settlement Music School, Philadelphia.

Twelve Preludes for Piano (Melbinger) were written in the first half of 2011 in Hollidaysburg, Pennsylvania. The premiere at Penn
State-Altoona later that year was performed by the composer. The pieces are fairly short – about 24 minutes in total, although
movements may be excerpted for performance. The music reflects Prelude models of Chopin, Debussy, and Martino. Most of the
movements explore one mood. The music is a little more transparent than the composer’s earlier works, and the textures some-
what lighter, as the composer hoped to say more with less. The death of Milton Babbitt during the composition process prompted
Prelude no. 7 to be dedicated to his memory using some of Babbitt’s own pitch organization ideas.

Incantations from the Popol Vuh (Holliday) draws on the legendary history of the creation of the world - The Popol Vuh, or Mayan
Council Book, which relates the daily life of the Maya in their natural surroundings and the underworld journey that awaits them
in death. The text abounds in fables involving animals, demons, and feats of magic. In this composition, the composer attempted to suggest the titanic struggles of the Hero Twins, Xblanque and Hunapu as they out-trick and wrestle with the forces of evil. The
three worlds, Lower, Middle, and Upper are represented by corresponding registers of the keyboard, with the twins ascending at the end to become the sun and the moon. Incantations from the Popol Vuh was commissioned by the Virginia Music Teachers Association and was premiered at their state convention at Sweet Briar College, Virginia, by the composer on November 7, 1997. It won the Barto International Competition for a Composition with a Literary Reference in 2012.

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