Tansman / Argentiero, Maria - Piano Music | RECORD STORE DAY
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Born in 1985, the Italian pianist Maria Argentiero gained an enthusiastic online following during lockdown with her streamed performances of repertoire from Haydn to Satie, Kapustin and beyond. She teaches in Rome and specializes as a performer in quirkier voices from the past century such as Tansman. The booklet features a thorough profile of the composer and his piano music, plus an interview between Maria Argentiero and Marianne Tansman, the composer's daughter, who recalls him as a 'very loving but very anxious' father. Alexander Tansman (1897-1986) was born in Lodz, Poland, into a wealthy Jewish family of great culture. He spoke 5 languages and studied law and philosophy. His early compositions show experiments with atonality and 12-tone music. In 1919 he left Poland for Paris, where he settled permanently. Tansman: "I spent the first twenty years of my life in Poland. In regard to the importance of Slavic influence in my music, I can readily say that I followed the same path as Bartók or Manuel de Falla: folklore imaginé. I did not use popular themes per se. I used, however, their general melodic contour. This folklore remained strongly present in my musical sensitivity." One could say that Tansman had a similar approach to writing music as Chopin - namely to use folklore as source material to be transformed by his imagination, without actual quoting. In a similar vein he used the different traditions he encountered when travelling round the globe, no matter whether it was jazz, gamelan or Japanese music. This new recording presents a selection of piano music by Tansman: the jazzy Sonatine Transatlantique, Trois Préludes en forme de blues, and the cycle La Tour du monde en miniature, delightful and vibrant musical depictions of places from all over the world.