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David Greilsammer releases “Scarlatti:Cage:Sonatas” on Sony, April 29

For David Greilsammer, April 29 brings the U.S. release of Scarlatti:Cage:Sonatas, his third album as an exclusive Sony Classics artist. Alternating the fiery vibrancy of keyboard sonatas by Italian Baroque composer Domenico Scarlatti with playfully evocative sonatas for prepared piano by American experimentalist John Cage, the new album, which was described as “the most captivating disc of the moment” by La Tribune de Genève, showcases the pianist’s “penchant for devising programs that challenge our attitudes” (Telegraph, UK), once again finding “fascinating ways to juxtapose pieces spanning centuries…to highlight surprising musical resonances among works vastly different in language and style” (New York Times). Greilsammer also presents the program in live performance at downtown New York hotspot Le Poisson Rouge on Tuesday, May 27.

The pianist explains:

“More than 200 years separate the two composers, but their sonatas seem to be so much alike: short, provocative, passionate, full of wild colors, and bursting with fresh rhythms. As true visionaries, ahead of their time, they treated the sonata not as a rigid and momentous form but as a magic space devoted to creation and experimentation.”

He discusses the relationship further in a YouTube video, available here.

It was the Scarlatti:Cage:Sonatas program that served as the vehicle for Greilsammer’s recent Kennedy Center recital debut. After noting the “kinship between the composers’ sonatas: their shared binary form, striking originality, and creation of miniature soundscapes,” the Washington Post praised Greilsammer’s “heart-stoppingly beautiful account of Scarlatti’s Sonata in D minor, K. 213, exquisite in its lyricism and cantabile line,” and his rendition of Cage’s Sonata V, which “emerged like a joyous, free-flowing jam session with an Indonesian gamelan orchestra.” The review concluded: “Greilsammer’s bracing sense of adventure is to be applauded. For his playing – always searching and never boring – was anything but ordinary.

The new disc follows on the heels of the pianist’s two previous Sony titles: Baroque Conversations, “an astonishing achievement, a triumph of innovative programming and brilliantly probing execution” according to the San Francisco Chronicle, which christened him “an artist of major importance,” and Mozart In-Between, which was named one of the “Best of 2013” by the New York Times.

Further details of David Greilsammer’s upcoming engagements are provided below, and more information is available at the artist’s website:

David Greilsammer, piano and prepared piano

Scarlatti: Cage: Sonatas

Sony Classical

U.S. release date: April 29


Scarlatti: Sonata in D minor, K. 213

Cage: Sonata XIV & XV “Gemini”

Scarlatti: Sonata in D minor, K. 141

Cage: Sonata XIII

Scarlatti: Sonata in E, K. 531

Cage: Sonata XI

Scarlatti: Sonata in B minor, K. 27

Cage: Sonata I

Scarlatti: Sonata in B minor, K. 87

Cage: Sonata XII 

Scarlatti: Sonata in A minor, K. 175

Cage: Sonata XVI

Scarlatti: Sonata in E, K. 381

Cage: Sonata V

Scarlatti: Sonata in D, K. 492


David Greilsammer: upcoming engagements


April 17 

Geneva, Switzerland

Electron Festival

Geneva Camerata

Bach: Concerto for Two Pianos in C minor (with Francesco Tristano, piano)


May 9

La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland

Arc en Scènes-Théâtre

Geneva Camerata

Rameau, Mozart, Martin Jaggi, Vivaldi, Porpora


May 12

Geneva, Switzerland

Geneva Camerata

“From Vienna to Budapest”: Haydn, Ligeti, Beethoven


May 13

Geneva, Switzerland

Geneva Camerata 

“Forgotten Voices”


May 15

Saint-Étienne, France

Opéra Théâtre de Saint-Étienne

Piano Festival Opening

Scarlatti:Cage:Sonatas CD Release Party


May 20

Saint-Étienne, France

Opéra Théâtre de Saint-Étienne

Orchestra Symphonique Saint-Étienne Loire

Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 9

Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 4


May 27

New York City

Le Poisson Rouge

Scarlatti:Cage:Sonatas CD Release Party


June 10

Tel Aviv, Israel

Israeli Conservatory of Music

Meitar Ensemble

Philippe Hurel: Pour Luigi

Noriko Baba: Non-Canonic Variations

Ofer Pelz: Chinese Whispers

Alexander Radvilovich: Pierrot’s Dreams

Nadav Cohen: New Piece

Gal Schuster: Chorale and Canon for Ensemble

J.C. Bach: Chorales and Canons

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© 21C Media Group, April 2014

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