Academic journal article Canadian University Music Review

Two Concert Etudes, Op. 19: Two Fugues, Op. 33; Integrations, Op. 49/sonata for Two Pianos/Carillon for Two Pianos

Academic journal article Canadian University Music Review

Two Concert Etudes, Op. 19: Two Fugues, Op. 33; Integrations, Op. 49/sonata for Two Pianos/Carillon for Two Pianos

Article excerpt

WYSCHNEGRADSKY: Two Concert Etudes, Op. 19: Two Fugues, Op. 33; Integrations, Op. 49. MATHER: Sonata for Two Pianos. HAMBRAEUS: Carillon for Two Pianos. Pierrette LaPage and Bruce Mather, duo-pianists. McGILL UNIVERSITY RECORDS 77002.

Wyschnegradsky. Not one concertgoer in 10,000 is likely to have ever heard his name, much less ever heard his music. Ivan Wyschnegradsky is one of those unique composers of advanced musical esoterics that emerged in the musically fertile World War I and pre-Depression era. Of these early atonalists and microtonalists, several examples of the music of Alois Haba, Carrillo, and, lately, Ornstein, can be found on disc, though only the Ornstein discs are easy to come by; the Swedish label Caprice has given the first discographical light to Roslavetz( see Fanfare 11:4, p. 99). But for Mossolov (disregarding the famous three-minute excerpt from his gimmicky Iron Foundry), Lourié, Pone, Pâque and others, total obscurity of their innovative works remains. And until the present Canadian release, Wyschnegradsky belonged to the later group.

Born in Russia in 1893 and resident in Paris since 1920, the stillactive Wyschnegradsky [Wyschnegradsky died in September 1979, ed.] has maintained an isolated 60-year embrace of microtonality. His music has had only occasional concerts; and for all the attention he has gotten, he may as well have been living in Tannu-Tuva. A meeting in 1974 between Wyschnegradsky and Canadian composer-pianist Bruce Mather led to a 1977 Montreal concert of eight of the former's works-for two pianos, for four pianos, and for violin and two pianos. Three of the four two-piano pieces that Mather and his wife, Pierrette LePage, performed on that concert (on pianos tuned a quarter-tone apart) are on this disc, including the world premières of the Two Etudes and Two Fugues.

The first of the Two Etudes (1931) is dominated by arpeggios, its creative inspiration being the one by Chopin in C major; tremolos introduce the second Etude, a rather anguished lullaby. The Two Fugues (1951) are also highly contrasted: the first is broken, fragmentary - with nervous progression of stops and starts of the theme; and the second features an almost relentless flow of descending scales with only brief moments of agitation. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.