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American Piano Music - Copland: El Salon México; Barber; Excursions, Op. 20; Piano Sonata; Gershwin: Preludes; Bolcom: Etudes / Christopher Harding, piano

Album Summary

>Copland, Aaron : El salón México
>Barber, Samuel : Excursions (4) for Piano, Op. 20
>Gershwin, George : Preludes (3) for piano
>Barber, Samuel : Sonata for Piano in E flat minor, Op. 26
>Bolcom, William : Twelve new etudes for piano
Performer Composers

Notes & Reviews:

American Record Guide, July/August 2013
Harding has assembled a good and varied collection of familiar and unfamiliar American piano works from the early 20th century, performed with vitality and a strong sense of rhythm. The El Salon Mexico is an exuberant and effortless opener with moments of humor. He carries the same dynamic energy into Excursions, showing his control of contrasts: the momentum of I never slips into monotony, while the slower II is measured yet with spontaneity. The thoroughly enjoyable Preludes are deployed with fluency, energy, and speed. The closing fugue is especially full of color and a constant rhythmic drive that takes it to a flourishing end. The Etudes, with elements of serialism and dense chromaticism, have quite a different character from the other selections, largely flavored with recognizable elements of jazz, blues, and folk influences. Etude 12 was a favorite of mine, reminiscent of Messiaen with its high note clusters and thick texture. Harding's program notes are also superb. This engaging sampling of American classical repertoire, past to present, is much recommended.

Notes & Reviews:

Recording information: Stamps Auditorium, University of Michigan School of Mus (03/2009).



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Works Details

>Copland, Aaron : El salón México
  • Performer: Christopher Harding (Piano)
  • Notes: Composition written: 1933-36.
  • Running Time: 9 min. 16 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Ballet
  • Written: 1933-1936

>Barber, Samuel : Excursions (4) for Piano, Op. 20
  • Performer: Christopher Harding (Piano)
  • Running Time: 12 min. 19 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1942-1944

>Gershwin, George : Preludes (3) for piano
  • Performer: Christopher Harding (Piano)
  • Running Time: 6 min. 14 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1926

>Barber, Samuel : Sonata for Piano in E flat minor, Op. 26
  • Performer: Christopher Harding (Piano)
  • Running Time: 19 min. 18 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1949

>Bolcom, William : Twelve new etudes for piano :: Hi-jinks
  • Performer: Christopher Harding (Piano)
  • Running Time: 1 min. 51 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1977-1986

>Bolcom, William : Twelve new etudes for piano :: Hymne à l'amour
  • Performer: Christopher Harding (Piano)
  • Running Time: 6 min. 40 sec.
  • Period Time: Contemporary
  • Written: 1977-1986