The unique amber sound of the Orchestra has originated in a unique place at the Baltic Sea – in Liepāja.

LSO, Pina Napolitano and ODRADEK RECORDS

In June Liepāja Symphony Orchestra and the Italian pianist Pina Napolitano will be recording music by Arnold Schönberg, Ernst Krenek and Béla Bartók for a CD to be released this year by the record label ODRADEK RECORDS. 

“ODRADEK RECORDSis an American record label which last year released our album „Kurland Sounds”,featuring Latvian composers’ music,” tells the artistic director and principal conductor of Liepāja Symphony Orchestra.“This time ODRADEK RECORDSinvited us to record the 20thcentury music and to collaborate with the outstanding Italian pianist Pina Napolitano.”

Pina Napolitano came to zenith of fame in 2012 when her first CD was released with the recording of Arnold Schönberg’s complete piano works, which received high appraisal from music critics of the world. She has won high acclaim for playing Liszt, Ravel and Bartók.

The orchestra and the pianist will be recording Arnold Schönberg’s Concerto for Piano and Orchestra, Op. 42 and Hungarian composer Béla Bartók’s Piano Concerto No. 3.

Austrian composer Arnold Schönberg, one of the most influential composers of the 20th century and also a renowned painter, wrote thePiano Concerto in 1942. It is around 25 minutes long and amongst his late works, composed in America, where he was forced to move because of his Jewish descent. The manuscript contains markings at the beginning of each of the four movements suggesting an autobiographical connection between the work and its composer, as well as refugees in general. Each of the four movements “Life was so easy”, “Suddenly hatred broke out”, “A grave situation was created”, and “But life goes on” match with suitable expressions in music. It was the composer’s decision not to include the markings in the final published version.

Another outstanding composer of the 20th century – Béla Bartók, wrote Piano Concerto No.3 in 1945 during the last months of his life as a surprise for his wife on her birthday. It is one of the composer’s works written after he left Hungary when the Second World War broke out. The Third Piano Concerto is seemingly light, airy and almost neoclassical, especially when compared to Bartók’s early compositions.

The CD will include two more pieces. One of them is Schönberg’s Opus No.34 – accompaniment to a silent film scene, commissioned in 1929. The composer was not a person subordinating to the director’s guidelines andconcentrated himself exclusively on the key words "threatening danger, fear, catastrophe". As a result the work was not suitable for the initial concept and the film with the accompaniment of this music existed only in Schönberg’s imagination. The composition iswritten for chamber orchestra and lasts around 9 minutes. It was premiered in Berlin in 1930 and had its American premiere in Hollywood in 1933.

The other piece is Symphonic Elegy for Strings by Ernst Krenek – the composer of Czech descent from Austria and later Americawrote the 9 minutes long piece in 1946 in memoriam of Anton Webern.

On 11 June in Rundāle palace it will be possible to hear Schönberg’s Piano Concerto played live by Liepāja Symphony Orchestra and Pina Napolitano.More information at www.koncertirundale.lv

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