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Cat. No. CHAN 10527 Price: £10.5 No. of discs: 1
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CHAN 10527 - Tansman: Works for Solo Piano
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Available From: 01 June 2009
Tansman: Works for Solo Piano

Chandos has been attentive in promoting the orchestral works of Alexandre Tansman, who due to the vagaries of fashion has to a great extent been ignored.   We now embark on the piano music and a deeply personal project for soloist Margaret Fingerhut.  ‘My curiosity about the piano music of Tansman began over 20 years ago when I encountered the delightfully languid Berceuse he wrote for the album of Hommages to Roussel, and which I recorded for Chandos.  The fact that he was born in Lodz, Poland, where my great-grandparents also came from, spurred me on to find out more about him, and since then I have been assiduously collecting his piano works - quite a task as it turns out that in the course of his long composing career Tansman was nothing if not prolific!’

‘I feel his music deserves to be revalued and heard by a new generation of listeners, and so I wanted to create a CD to present an overview of his unique style and musical language.  While the influences of Ravel, Poulenc, Milhaud and Stravinsky are apparent, along with jazz-inspired techniques, he himself professed his music to be rooted in his native Polish culture.  So the starting point for this disc had to be his Mazurkas – after all, he wrote more of them than almost any other composer except for that other famous Polish exile-in-Paris, Chopin!  Listen to his 2nd Mazurka to be transported to a world filled with gentle sweet melancholy. For me his piano music abounds in lyrical expression, tenderness, elegance, grace, good humour and exuberant virtuosity (he loved writing on three staves with huge leaps at great speed!).   It seems such a shame that the forces of dogma and experimentalism which ruled Paris since the Second World War left so many casualties in their wake, composers like Tansman who determinedly stuck with neoclassicism and who were not afraid of melody. It is my hope that his individual voice can speak to us afresh’.


...“Margaret Fingerhut is a consistently sensitive, intelligent performer.” “…she brings a strong technique and musicianly instincts to her performances, turning in a fine performance as Tansman’s advocate. Some of the highlights on this disc include her playfully stamping third mazurka in the Recueil de mazurkas; the bluesy, slow movement of the Troisieme sonatine played with refreshingly straightforward lyricism; and the clarity of cross rhythms and accents in the Etude from Album d’amis.

With good sound, a fine selection of music, and attractive liner notes, this is easily recommended for both its music and its performer.
Barry Brenesal

Fanfare - January/February 2010

“Margaret Fingerhut is alive to every aspect of this multifaceted music, whispering its poesies and spurring its stallions as the moment requires, and the Potton Hall recording presents her in pellucid sound. It was high time that a major record label and a musician of substance joined forces to do Tansman justice. There’s so much Tansman that one CD can’t present the complete picture, but this one is an excellent start."
Martin Anderson

International Piano Magazine - September/October 2009

“The Tansman revival continues apace, I am glad to say. This unexpected release of his piano works, in beautifully sensitive performances by Margaret Fingerhut, adds another dimension, I imagine , to most contemporary listeners’ knowledge of the composer’s work’s. Fingerhut is the perfect pianist for these idiosyncratically intimate works…. In addition, Chandos had the good sense to commission Maja Trochimczyk to write the insert notes. Magnificent.”
Ivan Moody

International Record Review - July/August 2009

“Tansman’s charming music receives a poetic performance from Fingerhut” “Fingerhut has an unerring sense of when to indulge the flamboyance, as well as of how to introduce a poetic quality”

Arnold Whitall

Gramophone - September 2009


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