Performer: Steffen Schleiermacher
Composer: Morton Feldman
Number of Discs: 3
Format: FLAC (image+cue)
Size: 372 MB
01. Triadic Memories, for piano (1981)
01. For Bunita Marcus, for solo piano (1987)
01. Piano (1977)
02. Palais de Mari (1986)
Feldman 18: Recording and Performance Come Together in Schleiermacher’s “For Bunita Marcus” (Vol.2)
I’ve gone daffy over this recording! I keep it on repeat all the night through. It opened up a Feldman work I previous had found slightly lower on my preference chart; now I feel I hear the quiet impressions of a bustling, nighttime metropolis- Feldman-as-Copeland?
I used to have Hildegard Kleeb, but maybe the usual “Red” label recording technique with Feldman (dry and “white”) made this sound too much like “For Samuel Beckett” for me? I don’t know, I just didn’t feel it, get it, whatever.
So, I came back, and now we have a good handful of interpretations to choose from. It seemed to come down to Hinterhauser and Schleiermacher, Takahashi not having recorded this work, apparently. The reviews for both were good, but special note was made of the MDG recording- some liked it, some didn’t (same as with the “Red” label, just didn’t approach)- but, what it promised was a pleasing acoustic (lots of space), and an extremely steady dynamic by Schleiermacher.
From the opening, this recording and performance made me think I was hearing “Piano and Orchestra”. I felt like I could sense Feldman’s grandeur here, the space transporting the notes, the perfectly judged engineering and the pianist’s touch coming together in one certain “sweet spot”, that practically “sits” right there, coming out of the speakers. It’s NOT “too quiet”. I think it’s “Goldilocks just right”. A little more either way and it might not have worked, but I think they all did the best that can be had here.
Had the Hinterhauser been less expensive we might have a different story, but, either way, I think Schleiermacher’s “For Bunita Marcus” should be qualified as “Special”. I’m not so sure of his way with “Triadic Memories”, but I would certainly like to here him in the other late, “static” piece, “Palais de Mari”, which plays towards the faster end of the scale (22 mins. as opposed to Takahashi’s 29 mins.).
HIGHEST FELDMAN RECOMMENDATION
HIGHEST GENERAL RECOMMENDATION FOR “MEDITATIVE” MUSIC