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Bernstein/Copland/Ives/Harrison: Great American Sonatas

Audio CD

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Audio CD, 30 Dec 2016
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Product details

  • Conductor: -
  • Composer: Bernstein, Copland, Ives, Harrison
  • Audio CD (30 Dec. 2016)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Somm
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
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  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 325,385 in CDs & Vinyl (See Top 100 in CDs & Vinyl)
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Digital Booklet: Great American Sonatas
Digital Booklet: Great American Sonatas
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Product description


Nathan Williamson brings together works by four American composers, mostly from the 1930s. Copland's Piano Sonata (1939-41) is striking and desolate, especially the heavily chordal finale which sinks into quiet, mysterious retreat. Bernstein's, composed when he was still a student at Harvard (1938), has a free structure but a dense texture, full of toccata and syncopation. Lou Harrison's Sonata No 3 (1938) exemplifies his love of process and rules, though is hugely more rewarding than that may sound. Ives's short Three-Page Sonata (1905), bold, dissonant and also schematic in its use of the B-A-C-H motif, ends with jubilant marches: iconic Ives that looks back to an American past as well as forwards. All fascinating. **** --Observer, 19/2/17

5* This is an exceptional CD announcing a remarkable young British pianist...Williamson is a pianist of striking insight and he is a resourceful composer too. --Musical Opinion, Apr-Jun'17

4* Performance / 4* Recording Bolstered by the recording's intimate, warm acoustic and wide dynamic range, Nathan Williamson, an excellent pianist, adds a touch of romance to the most granitic dissonances... /// If the sonata represents the piano repertoire's proverbial Everest, Nathan Williamson's intelligently vivid recital suggests there is more than one way to scale its vertiginous heights. /// Williamson catches its moods to perfection- declamatory grandeur set alongside dancing rhythms in varied metres- and his rhythmic control is immaculate- as, of course, was Bernstein's. The slow finale enters a rarefied world not far from late Beethoven, in a particularly personal way. /// --BBC Music Magazine, May'17/// Classical Ear, May'17/// Musical Opinion, June'17

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