THE WELL-MEDITATED CLAVIER
Total time: 74:16
Written in April – June 2020 Written in April – June 2020
Special thanks to: Carina Abramyan, Natalia Emelina, Maria Nesterova
This album has no concept or idea that precedes the music. Nine pieces: Formula 1, Formula 2, and so on, up to Formula 9. The ancient formulas for working with material – chaconne, passacaglia, canon, counterpoint, rondo – perfectly correspond to ‘minimalist’ thinking. With their help, we discover endless configurations of sounds within simple melodic and harmonic patterns. These sounds produced by the piano become an object for meditation.
As always, it is important for me to find the right piano for each recording – the one that helps the music sound the way I want. Among other things, each album is a sonic image inseparable from the music itself and its performance. This search would lead me to Steinway pianos made in the 1930s and 1950s, and to the modern Faziolis and Bösendorfers. And this time I wanted to find an instrument that has absolutely nothing to do with sterile perfection of live/studio standards. Carina Abramyan, a producer at Melodiya, took me to the Museum of Music, where they showed me a 1909 Steinway once owned by the eminent pianist Nikolai Petrov (1943–2011). This instrument is absolutely amazing. Every key seems to have its own expressiveness and individuality different from other keys. Some mechanical sounds of a keyboard action can also be heard – as it usually happens with the mechanics of a harpsichord and with guitar string slides. There is some ‘imperfection’ in this piano (unlike the faultlessly smooth bright sound of today’s concert grands), but this is what makes this instrument really special. I am grateful to the museum staff for creating ideal environment for my work. And, of course, I am grateful to Carina. Thanks to her this album sounds this way.
Translated by Nikolai Kuznetsov / AB
(c) Melodia 2023
Album release date: December 1, 2023