Minimal Piano Works, Volume 1
Music by Philip Glass
Jeroen Van Veen, piano
Piano Productions PP 9910
|WICHITA SUTRA VORTEX|
|7.||Wichita Sutra Vortex||8:34|
|8.||Opening (from Glassworks, arr. Van Veen)||11:09|
In my concert career I have played a lot of minimal— or minimal related music. Pieces by John Adams, Steve Reich, Simeon ten Holt and Arvo Pärt are favorites on my repertoire list. Philip Glass is an eccentric composer, and for some reason I had never played his pianomusic, until last year when I did several concerts in The Netherlands. It was a real eye-opener. The music is so sensitive and pianisticly written. It is a joy to play and perform Glass.
Solo Piano has been widely regarded as a contractual filler, but is actually one of his most pleasing recordings, and it makes a fine first taste of his work. The music is not demanding in terms of performing or listening as compared to the concert hall tradition of Rachmaninov or Liszt. To Philip Glass, piano music is something intimate and his love for Schubert is apparent in Mad Rush, which initially suggests Schubert's Du bist die Ruh and is less 'mad' than the keenly pulsating Metamorphosis collection. The 'madness' becomes heavily apparent in the classic scoring of the contrary motion arpeggios, which have previously been explored in Music in Contrary Motion, which was accompanied by similar works such as Music in Fifths, Music in Similar Motion, Music with Changing Parts and Two Pages. Glass' piano music was first introduced with an opening solo in Glassworks. The piano works on this CD are an excellent example of the minimal music style. Repeated musical elements, based on the tonal classical system. People love or hate it. There is no inbetween. The rhythm between the left and right hands (two against three) on the piano is essential in Glass' writing. The compositions show a great contrast even with minimal notes. The complete keyboard is used to work this out. The music has a strong feeling to nature; one can hear water, waterfalls, wind, seashores etcetera. Just close your eyes and imagine. The music is easy to understand, and because of the simple repetitive structure it requires a lot of initiative from the performer. On this album I have tried to give my own interpretation of Philip Glass' music. I hope you enjoy this music as much as I do.
— Jeroen Van Veen
NOTES ABOUT Jeroen Van Veen
Jeroen Van Veen (1969) started playing the piano at the age of 7. He studied at the Utrecht Conservatory with Alwin Bär en Håkon Austbö. In 1993 he passed the Performing Artists' Exam. Van Veen played with orchestras conducted by Howard Williams (Adams). Peter Eötvös (Zimmermann) in Amsterdam, Utrecht, Vienna and Budapest and in the United States with Neal Stulberg (Mozart & Bartok) and Robert Craft (Stravinsky). Van Veen also followed masterclasses with Claude Helffer, Hans-Peter & Volker Stenzl and Roberto Szidon. He played at several festivals; Reder Piano Festival (1988), Festival der Kunsten in Bad Gleichenberg (1992), Wien Modern (1993), Holland Dance Festival (1998). Van Veen recorded for major Dutch Radio— and Television companies like AVRO, NOS, IKON, NCRV, TROS/Internet and for WTBC-TV & Radio (Florida U.S.). In 1992, Van Veen recorded his first CD with his brother Maarten with whom he forms the internationally recognized Pianoduo Van Veen. In 1995 Pianoduo Van Veen debuted in the United States. They were prizewinner in the prestigious 4th International Murray Dranoff Two Piano Competition in Miami, Florida. After this achievement they toured the United States for several times. In the documentary 'Two Pianos One Passion' (nominated with an Emmy Award 1996) they were followed as a duo. Besides performing, Van Veen teaches at the University of Utrecht, and is a member of the jury from the International Student Piano Competition which is held in Utrecht every two years.
In 1995 Van Veen started Van Veen & Van Veen; another pianoduo with his wife Sandra. They have dedicated themselves to tonal music, which develops during the performance on stage. The final form is indefinite at forehand. They mainly play music for multiple pianos from the Dutch composer Simeon ten Holt.
Since 1999 the Van Veen & Van Veen started a concertseries called 'Pianova' in the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam.
Original music composed by Philip Glass. Performed by Jeroen Van Veen, piano.
Jeroen Van Veen plays on a Yamaha CFIII Concert Grand Piano. Produced by: Piano Productions vof. Executive Producer: Jeroen Van Veen.
Engineered by: Rutger Boere. Recording location: K & W, Utrecht. Recording date: July 7th 1999. Editing: Salisbury Sound.
Design: Hans Bassa BNO (Studio Bassa). Distribution: Clavicenter, Amsterdam.
© 1999 Piano Productions vof The Netherlands.