Homage to Franco Donatoni : Akira Kobayashi (b.1960) - Illusion, Andreina Costantini (b.1955) - Tides, Fabrizio De Rossi Re (b.1960) - Sette Refrains, Fiorenza Gilioli (b.1954) - Once again, Gian Paolo Luppi (b.1959) - Ritratti d’Oriente, Hiroyuki Yamamoto (b.1967) - Canto senza parole, Rica Narimoto (b.1969) - Illuminated Windows II, Sonia Bo (b.1960) - D'Onde, Takashi Tokunaga (b.1973) - Autopoietic Motion, Tomoyuki Hisatome (b.1955) - Una Partenza dall’Europa.

Catalogue Number: 01Y038

Label: Da Vinci Classics

Reference: C00351

Format: CD

Price: $18.98

Description: This varied recital of works written this century is unified by the revered figure of Donatoni, to whom the composers and pianist pay tribute in a "concept album", the concept of which is basically "Two degrees of Franco Donatoni" - the composers either studied with him personally (the five Italians, Hisatone and Tokunaga) or came into contact with his compositional ideals due to his many visits to Japan as an invited professor at the University of Tokyo, teaching, and transmitting his ideas there. The project was conceived by Luppi when he was "teaching at the Aichi University of Nagoya and working with the students of my colleagues Yamamoto, Hisatome, Narimoto and Kobayashi. I felt myself very sympathetic to their languages and I discovered with great pleasure that Franco Donatoni’s music was among their compositional models." The works are all brief and concentrated, and not "difficult" as contemporary music goes, all being played and notated conventionally. There are toccatas - Kobayashi's Illusion, Tokunaga's Autopoietic Motion, Luppi's 3rd prelude - and references to decidedly non-avant garde music (Hoagy Carmichael's "Stardust" in Gilioli's Once Again, built on a musical monogram of Donatoni's name, and the " … well-known (and lesser known) songs of the Fifties and Sixties" which de Rossi Re and Donatoni "softly sang, chuckling between ourselves" after "a dinner we had in Bologna, after a concert, in the late 1990s … The picture of Franco, one of the most important twentieth-century composers, who happily sang with me, under the city’s arcades, is one I will cherish in my heart for my entire life." Luppi's brief preludes - portraits of his Japanese composer colleagues represented here - have an impressionistic richness of texture in an extended tonal language, while Costantini's Tides paints an impressionistic waterscape in rippling gestures. Hisatome's Una Partenza dall’Europa is especially wide-ranging and inventive; the only piece here that attempts any "Asian" references, it incorporates "… the Pigmies’ polyphony of Africa", a musical monogram shared by Donatoni and Hisatome, a vigorous dance with "tribal drumming percussion" supplied by stopped bass strings inside the piano, and a North Indian melody in praise of a guru, in tribute to Donatoni. Kumi Uchimoto, piano.

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