Mark Damisch has unveiled his 2017 concert tour repertoire as follows:
BARTOK: SIX ROMANIAN DANCES (1915)
This is a suite of six short pieces.. It is based on Romanian tunes from Transylvania, originally played on fiddle or shepherd’s flute recorded by Bartok and taken back to his studio.
I. Bot tánc / Jocul cu bâta (Stick Dance) First heard when Bartok heard two
Gypsy violinists playing it
II. Brâul (Sash Dance)
III. Topogó / Pe loc (In One Spot) Middle Eastern sounding
IV. Bucsumí tánc / Buciumeana (Dance from Bucsum)
V. Román polka / Poarga Româneasca (Romanian Polka)
VI. Aprózó / Marutel (Fast Dance)
DOHNANYI: RHAPSODY IN C MAJOR, OPUS 11, No. 3 (1910)
Dohnanyi’s rhapsodies are demanding both technically and emotionally, expecting pianists to show drastic changes in emotion, changing between moods as the music requires.
BARTOK: TWO ROMANIAN DANCES, OPUS 8A and 8B (1910)
The first dance is rhapsodic. It has a recurrent main theme and provides the foundations of the work. The middle section has a simple melody, fades away, and, after a long and increasingly frenzied crescendo, the main theme returns in triumphant fortissimo octaves.
The second dance begins with a brief introductory passage, which sets the mood of the piece — a strange mix of humour and severity. The main theme is based loosely on a Romanian jeering song. After a violent transition, the the main theme returns, yet more frantic; after another brief interlude, it returns again, with “more motion and feverishly”.
The remainder of the piece is a mishmash of cheerful motifs, contrasting from amusing to disconcerting.
DEBUSSY: CLAIR DE LUNE (1890)
Originally named “Prominade Sentimentale” this piece is Impressionistic in nature. It is part of a larger piece named Suite Bergamasque. It comes from
a poem. (“Moonlight”)
COPLAND: APPALACHIAN SPRING (1944)
A composition by Aaron Copland that premiered at the Library of Congress and has achieved widespread popularity.
Near the end is the famousShaker theme. The theme was taken from a collection of Shaker melodies and published under the title “It is a Gift to Be Simple.”
COPLAND: EL SALON MEXICO (1936)
This one movement piece uses Mexican Folk music extensively. The work is a musical depiction of an imaginary dance hall in Mexico City. The subtitle was “A Popular Type Dance Hall in Mexico City.”