Barber / Bartok: Piano Concertos

Barber / Bartok: Piano Concertos cover
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Barber / Bartok: Piano Concertos
Keith Jarrett (piano) / Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Saarbrücken, New Japan Philharmonic, Kazuyoshi Akiyama & Dennis Russell Davies

[ ECM New Series / CD ]

Release Date: Wednesday 10 June 2015

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For much of the 1980s, Keith Jarrett balanced his improvisational activities with performances of classical music and contemporary composition. On this disc, with concert recordings from 1984 and 1985, he is heard playing Samuel Barber's Piano Concerto op. 38 and Béla Bartók's Piano Concerto No. 3, and rising to the challenges of these major works. The New York Times praised Jarrett's playing of the Barber with Dennis Russell Davies in this period ("a sinewy, vigorously lyrical performance … both sensitive and strong"), and the Bartók with Kazuyoshi Akiyama was most enthusiastically received in Japan. After the Tokyo Bartók performance Jarrett returned alone to the stage of the Kan-i Hoken Hall to play a touching improvised encore, also documented on this recording. The album includes liner notes by Keith Jarrett and Paul Griffiths. (This historical album of music by Barber, Bartók and Jarrett is one of two albums issued on May 8th, Keith Jarrett's 70th birthday, the other album being Creation with new recordings of improvised solo piano.)

Keith Jarrett - piano
Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Saarbrücken
Dennis Russell Davies - conductor
New Japan Philharmonic
Kazuyoshi Akiyama- conductor

"it's easy to hear why he gravitated to these jazz-attuned composers. But the results still end up sounding mostly like Jarrett. His way with rhythm - spiky, pliant - works for the opening of Bartók's Third Concerto, but Barber's concerto has none of the colour gradations of a Jarrett great." (Guardian)


SAMUEL BARBER - Piano Concerto Op. 38
BELA BARTOK - Piano Concerto No. 3
KEITH JARRETT - Tokyo Encore