Simone Dinnerstein is a favorite pianist around the NYC Metro area and around the world. A Far Cry is a Boston-based ensemble, whose cellos and bass are poets, having a conversation of their own in this lively cocktail party in this soon to be released CD from Orange Mountain Records. It is the perfect music for your own rite of Spring for its fusion of Johann Sebastian Bach whose music resonates in Philip Glass’ work and beyond.
The first piece features Dinnerstein in Bach’s Keyboard Concerto in G minor, BWV1058. The Allegro leads off with great energy and dynamic control that segues into the commanding and majestic Andante, which appears to make pronouncements, then follow up with rational argument. The Allegro assai has exchanges among Dinnerstein and the ensemble, showing their joy in the unity of effort and the beauty of the sound that they create together. There is a rapture in the creation of the experience of performance that envelopes the listener. Particularly beautiful passages abound.
Glass wrote his Piano Concerto Number Three expressly for Dinnerstein. Glass had invited her to his home to play a short program of Franz Schubert, as well as his own work, and then and there, he knew he’d write something expressly for her. Glass studied with the renowned Nadia Boulanger, who taught him to analyze Bach, study what made his music so timeless, and the result is this vintage beauty.
A Far Cry adds the full strength of the ensemble for the Glass, and Movement I has vibrating sinuous sweep, punctuated with modal sway. There is a broad “Rodeo” type feel to Movement II, and urgency to the low intoning figure. Movement III is thought rendered as sound, with a Roma-esque effect. Movement IV exudes a dark Capriccio Espagnol or something from a haunted Tim Burton western.
The Movements I and II are played immediately after one another, with the beginning as a Romantic-era, Chopin-esque Impressionistic delight. Later, there is a lushness and melancholy beauty, like a bittersweet snowfall. Movement III is dedicated to Arvo Pärt, and Glass acknowledges that, while it is inspired by him, its minimalist beauty is not what Pärt would write himself. This is truly the measure of admiration.
This album will be released on May 11, so pre-order now at your favorite music service and give yourself, and your friends, the gift of amazing music. To order this great recording, visit Amazon at https://www.amazon.com/CIRCLES-Piano-Concertos-Bach-Glass/dp/B07B47QGHW
or Apple at https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/circles-piano-concertos-by-bach-glass/1356328954