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Thomas Larcher (b.1963): What Becomes; A Padmore Cycle; Smart Dust; Poems / Mark Padmore (tenor), Larcher (piano), Stefanovich (piano)

Album Summary

>Larcher, Thomas : Smart Dust, for piano
>Larcher, Thomas : Poems, for piano
>Larcher, Thomas : What Becomes, for piano
>Larcher, Thomas : A Padmore Cycle, for tenor & piano
Performers Composer

Notes & Reviews:

Born in Innsbruck in 1963, Thomas Larcher grew up in Austrian Tyrol. He studied composition and piano in Vienna and began his musical career as an acclaimed piano soloist. For some years now, Larcher has dedicated himself primarily to composing and is today considered one of the leading composers of contemporary classical music in Austria. Larcher's sound world is both original and captivating in its fusion of contemplative harmonies with innovative performance techniques. Written for and performed by tenor Mark Padmore, A Padmore Cycle features the composer at the keyboard. Works for solo piano performed by Tamara Stefanovich round out this program of first recordings.

The Guardian, 15th May 2014
If Larcher's settings, which are beautifully tailored to the colour, clarity and expressive strengths of Padmore's voice, evoke any specific 19th-century song composer it is Schumann.

BBC Music Magazine, June 2014
Larcher's music is notable for its eclectic frame of reference and a capacity for creating striking and surprising moments...the songs make full use of Padmore's exceptional interpretative talents.

Gramophone Magazine, June 2014
Larcher maintains a fascination with the unadorned note, often played in spacious, uncrowded circumstances that require a certain kind of concentration to determine what sort of an idea is unfolding...The special qualities of A Padmore Cycle would emerge in higher relief if surrounded by something more traditional.

American Record Guide, July/August 2014
Recent music by the impressive German composer Thomas Larcher. Smart Dust (2005), for prepared piano, is named after "microelectromechanical sensors that can detect everything from light to vibrations". More intense than Cage's poetic excursions, this is a fine modern update. Poems (1975-2010) are described as "12 pieces for pianists & other children". If you teach (or are being taught), and are looking for an alternative to, say, Mikrokosmos, you should not miss these. What Becomes (2009), the release's title, is a suite of seven pieces for solo piano, written with the proviso that the piano be "normal". All of these pieces are atmospheric, sometimes powerful, and often beautiful. Larcher is himself an exceptional pianist, and thus his piano writing is idiomatic and always effective. Ms Stefanovich again acquits herself brilliantly. A Padmore Cycle (2010-11) is a set of 11 elliptical songs on texts by Hans Aschenwald and Alonds Hotschnig. I continue to find Mr Larcher one of today's most consistently interesting figures. If you don't know his work, give this a try.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: ORF Landesstudio Tirol, Innsbruck, Austria (11/2012).



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Works Details

>Larcher, Thomas : Smart Dust, for piano
  • Performer: Tamara Stefanovich (Piano)
  • Running Time: 9 min. 52 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2005

>Larcher, Thomas : Poems, for piano
  • Performer: Tamara Stefanovich (Piano)
  • Running Time: 17 min. 15 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1975-2010

>Larcher, Thomas : What Becomes, for piano
  • Performer: Tamara Stefanovich (Piano)
  • Running Time: 19 min. 26 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2009

>Larcher, Thomas : A Padmore Cycle, for tenor & piano
  • Performers: Thomas Larcher (Piano); Mark Padmore
  • Running Time: 23 min. 12 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 2010-2011