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Thursday, November 14, 2013

Gian Francesco Malipiero, Piano Works, Gino Gorini

I am glad to discover music otherwise unknown to me if it is worth the listen. The composer Gian Francesco Malipiero (1882-1973) definitely qualifies in that regard, specifically in his Piano Works (Newton Classics 880 2199) as recorded by pianist Gino Gorini. The composer was born in Venice and lived most of his life in Italy.

That he had a long and productive composing career is attested to in this collection of works spanning the period from 1916 to 1959. The works represented give you a very good idea of his stylistic range. He is harmonically modern in an expanded tonal vein. There are impressionistic touches along with late-romantic expressiveness and sometimes neo-classical structural aspects, but his inventiveness shows an original musical mind at work and a thoroughly contemporary sense. Ravel, Stravinsky, Hindemith, Scriabin come to mind as composers he shares something with, but always in his own terms and not in any imitative sense.

Gino Gorini gives us wonderfully poetic readings of the works and an excellent sense of logic and form in his emphases of phrasings in any given piece.

In short Malipiero as composer for the piano is a real discovery (at least for me). He has brilliance and Gino Gorini brings it all to us in fine form. Highly recommended.

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