Jacob Greenberg: Solitary

About

Solitary is a collection of solo piano works written during periods of extreme isolation and creative austerity in the respective composers’ lives. The recording, Jacob Greenberg’s debut full length cd, features works by Kurtag, Schoenberg, Mozart, Schumann, and Jacob himself.

Audio

# Audio Title/Composer(s) Time
Total Time 54:06

Selections from Jatekok, Book 5

Gyorgy Kurtag (b. 1926)
01(...lovely greetings from Grete Spinnrad)
(...lovely greetings from Grete Spinnrad)
0:30
02Bell-Fanfare for Sandor Veress
Bell-Fanfare for Sandor Veress
0:50
03Capriccioso- luminoso (for Jeno Szervansky's 80th birthday)
Capriccioso- luminoso (for Jeno Szervansky's 80th birthday)
0:28
04Flowers we are...
Flowers we are...
0:54
05The little squall
The little squall
0:29
06... flowers also the stars...
... flowers also the stars...
0:11
07An apocryhal hymn
An apocryhal hymn
2:47
08The girl with the flaxen hair - enraged
The girl with the flaxen hair - enraged
1:20
09Fanfares
Fanfares
0:44
10Farewell to Pal Kadosa
Farewell to Pal Kadosa
1:17
11Mozart: Rondo in A minor, K. 511
Mozart: Rondo in A minor, K. 511
10:46

Suite for Piano, op. 25

Arnold Schoenberg (1874-1951)
12Praeludium
Praeludium
0:56
13Gavotte
Gavotte
1:17
14Musette: Gavotte da Capo
Musette: Gavotte da Capo
2:45
15Intermezzo
Intermezzo
4:05
16Minuett and Trio
Minuett and Trio
3:50
17Gigue
Gigue
2:55
18Greenberg: Lied ohne Worte nach Rilke
Greenberg: Lied ohne Worte nach Rilke
4:31

Gesange der Fruhe, op. 133

Robert Schumann (1810-1856)
19I. Im ruhigen Tempo
I. Im ruhigen Tempo
2:29
20II. Belebt, nicht zu rasch
II. Belebt, nicht zu rasch
1:51
21III. Lebhaft
III. Lebhaft
2:42
22IV. Bewegt
IV. Bewegt
2:45
23V. Im Anfange ruhiges, im Verlauf bewegteres Tempo
V. Im Anfange ruhiges, im Verlauf bewegteres Tempo
3:24

Solitary is a collection of solo piano works written during periods of extreme isolation and creative austerity in the respective composers' lives. The recording, Jacob Greenberg's debut full length cd, features works by Kurtag, Schoenberg, Mozart, Schumann, and Jacob himself. The solo piano's introspective and solitary sound glues the diverse program together here, as does Jacob's hauntingly beautiful playing. There is something so intimate and cerebral about the sound of the piano, a sound that sheds the visceral qualities of vibrato and overt timbral differentiation, that a recital program such as this one can feel as if it takes place all within the inner life of the mind, even as it covers vast expressive territory.

Recorded 12/2008, 1/2009 and 1/2010, Sweeney Hall, Smith College, Massachusetts

Executive Producer: Jacob Greenberg
Session producers: Ryan Streber (all tracks), Daniel Lippel (Kurtag, Mozart), Kivie Cahn-Lipman (Schumann), Claire Chase (Schoenberg, Schumann)
Recording engineer, Digital Editing, Post-Production: Ryan Streber
Design: Jill Malek
Photography: Jacob Greenberg, Rebekah Heller

Jacob Greenberg

Pianist JACOB GREENBERG's work as a soloist and chamber musician has earned worldwide acclaim. As a longtime member of the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE), he has performed throughout North and South Americas and Europe. His solo concert series, Music at Close Range, shows his equal commitment to classics of the repertoire.

A leading pianist of modern song, he has toured extensively with soprano Tony Arnold. Other ensemble performances include MusicNOW, with members of the Chicago Symphony, and Contempo at the University of Chicago. As an orchestral player, he has also appeared with the New York Philharmonic, Israel Philharmonic, and Australian Chamber Orchestra. Mr. Greenberg has recorded for the Bridge, Naxos, Mode, Kairos, Centaur, Tzadik, and New Amsterdam labels, and live performances have been heard on WQXR New York, BBC Radio 3, WFMT Chicago and Radio Netherlands. Other CDs include solo and chamber music of George Crumb with ICE (Bridge 9261) and a disc pairing Schumann and Ferruccio Busoni. Mr. Greenberg is also a record producer, and has completed discs for major domestic and international labels.

Recent highlights include a guest performance of works of György Kurtág at the International Summer Courses in Darmstadt, Germany, under the composer's guidance; a recital tour with flutist Claire Chase; Messiaen's Harawi at the Library of Congress; and Harrison Birtwistle's Slow Frieze with conductor Ludovic Morlot at Lincoln Center's Mostly Mozart Festival. www.jacobgreenberg.net.


Reviews

Alex Ross Blog

"By the way, I'd like to mention again Jacob Greenberg's fine CD Solitary, with a strikingly polystylistic Lied ohne Worte by the pianist."

- The Rest is Noise

American Record Blog

Gyorgy Kurtag's Jatekok is a pedagogical work in the same vein as Bartok's Mikrokosmos. Pianist and composer Jacob Greenberg opens this interesting collection with ten selections from the fifth book; the pieces are small-scale but endlessly fascinating for their understanding of piano sonority and compositional ingenuity. He plays these pieces wonderfully.
Next is his account of Schumann's little played Songs of the Dawn; Schumann completed them about four months before his mental collapse, and I've never understood why they aren't performed more often; Greenberg makes a great case for them.
The Schoenberg-- a fiendishly difficult work-- sounds very enthusiastic, almost truculent.  Greenberg's virtuosic "Lied ohne Worte nach Rilke" is a delightful miniature, and its compositional quality is completely at home with the other works.

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