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I ended up at Adès' The Tempest Met theater broadcast a bit randomly this weekend, but what a fantastic experience the opera turned out to be. I personally find the libretto (and singing in English!) a bit quirky and uncomfortable, and I thought the resolution in Act III a bit contrived and rushed, but the music was so captivating.
I was largely unfamiliar with the opera, this production, and have read little since, but I imagine each person probably has his own strong opinion on the music, e.g. such an audacious character such as Ariel. I ate it all up. Gorgeous and captivating. Bravo and brava to Keenlyside as Prospero, and Luna as Ariel. I spoke softly the rest of the weekend in Luna's honor; I'm not a singer, and know little about the mechanics, but ouch!
Aria: Five Fathoms Deep
Five fathoms deep Your father lies These are pearls That were his eyes Nothing of him That was mortal Is the same. His bones are coral He has suffered A sea change Into something Rich and strange Sea-nymphs hourly Ring his knell. I can hear them Ding dong bell
I'm not familiar with Adès' keyboard music, but see on Wiki that he has some output: Keyboard: piano 1992: Darknesse Visible Keyboard: piano 1991–1992: Still Sorrowing Keyboard: piano 1995–1996: Traced Overhead Keyboard: piano 1995–1996: Etude (withdrawn?) Concertante 1997: Concerto Conciso for piano and 10 players Keyboard: piano 2009: Concert Paraphrase on Powder Her Face Keyboard: piano 2009: 3 Mazurkas Keyboard: piano 2012: Thrift for piano
I'd like to check some of it out. Anyone have any suggestions on worthwhile compositions to start with?
Currently working on: -Poulenc Trois pièces -Liszt Harmonies du Soir -Bach/Brahms Chaconne for Left Hand
I've only heard Darknesse Visible and Trace'd Overhead, which are both intriguing, but have never seen the scores. Quite a few pianists have taken them up.
Adès is a very fine pianist himself (he first came to prominence as a pianist, playing a Bartok Concerto in the BBC Young Musician competition as well as his own music), and his recording of Schubert's 'Trout' Quintet is one of the best around. His piano writing, however, sounds quite individual to my ears.
"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."