Pianist Nadia Shpachenko’s album The Poetry of Places has won the Best Classical Compendium Award at the 62nd Annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles on Sunday 26 January. Released in 2019 by Reference Recordings The Poetry of Places features world premiere recordings of works for solo piano, for two pianos, percussion, electronics, voice, and toy piano in a fascinating mélange inspired by great architecture and places.
Jack Van Zandt’s Si an Bhrú for piano and electronics is inspired by the 3500 BCE monument in County Meath, Ireland (known in English as Newgrange) thought to be the oldest extant building in the world. The musical structure of Sí an Bhrú takes the form of continuous variations on cyclic thematic materials that fall into several titled sections based on architectural, environmental, scientific and geometrical aspects of the building that suggested musical expression. Time and the River portrays the infinite, slow-motion flow of time in the progression of celestial objects, nature, the seasons and the nearby River Boyne. Stonecutting represents technologies that enabled the builders the ability to move and shape the giant heavy stones. Spirals and Zigzags(Homage à Boulez) is based on the shapes that decorate the stones, evidence of sophisticated abstract thinking as well as an acute awareness of nature. Dance of Renewal is an imaginary ritual dance for the winter solstice, propelled by a gradually emerging ostinato. A brief return to the piece’s beginning, Eternal River, leads back to the outside world and the timeless wonder of a moonless, crystal-clear Starlit Night.
Composers Edition congratulates Nadia Shpachenko on this great win and is proud to make Si an Bhrú for piano and optional electronic track available in print and digital.