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Hyperion Records

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Track(s) taken from CDA67564
Recording details: November 2006
St George's, Brandon Hill, United Kingdom
Produced by Andrew Keener
Engineered by Simon Eadon
Release date: July 2007
Total duration: 5 minutes 12 seconds

Sechs Kleine Klavierstücke, Op 19

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Leicht, zart  [1'06]
Langsam  [0'55]
Sehr langsam  [1'04]
Etwas rasch  [0'36]
Sehr langsam  [1'01]

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
Consider the times. Europe entering the second decade of the twentieth century and on the brink of world war. The artistic community continues to digest Picasso and his seminal Les demoiselles d’Avignon of 1907, Joyce struggles to find a publisher for Dubliners, and a group of poets calling themselves Imagists seeks concision rather than elaboration to convey emotional density.

Arnold Schoenberg’s Six Little Piano Pieces Op 19 of 1911 are as much a product of the experimental intellectual energies of this time as they are an expression of a community heading to disaster. In their five-minute duration we hear a grimness and uncertainty not lost on us today. If we take Schoenberg at his word and try to find a way into his music as it is rather than through how it was made, we may agree with the noted pianist and scholar Charles Rosen when he writes that Schoenberg’s is ‘the most expressive music ever written’.

from notes by Grant Hiroshima © 2007

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