Spring 2018
For Immediate Release
Kathryn King
Kathryn King Media
Premieres in Boston
Donald Berman Brings New Works
by  Elena Ruehr, John Aylward, Eric Moe

Connoisseurs of the pianist's art in the Boston area will be happy to learn of the return of American pianist Donald Berman, who will soon appear as part of Divergent Studio at Longy School of Music of Bard College

For this hometown appearance, Mr. Berman celebrates with a summery theme on Wednesday, 13 June 2018 at 8pm, at Pickman Hall (27 Garden St., Cambridge MA 02138).  Tickets are free. (Information: 617-876-0956 x.1765). A champion of new music like no other, Mr. Berman brings a typically elegant and beautifully balanced program, with works from three different historical periods, including two Boston premieres. The premieres are Frozen Rain, Summer Dreams (2008) by Eric Moe, and  Summer on the Lakes, in 1843 (2018) by American composer Elena Ruehr. The entire program will first be introduced in New York at Bargemusic on Friday, 25 May at 8pm:  Donald Berman at Bargemusic.

Commissioned by Mr. Berman, Summer on the Lakes, in 1843 is inspired by writer and early feminist Margaret Fuller, who wrote a book by that name about her experiences visiting the Great Lakes in the 19th century. Elena Ruehr, who hails from the same region, felt a special resonance with Fuller's impressions, forming an intimate link one can hear in the music. Says Mr. Berman, "I'm delighted that Elena Ruehr was able to find the time for a new commission. I've been interested in American writer, editor, Transcendentalist and social activist Margaret Fuller for a number of years and thought that Elena would be the perfect person to address such a subject. The other new music pieces are by two composers - John Aylward and Eric Moe - whose work I particularly enjoy and with whom I collaborate often." The program also includes  Flux Ripple Flutter  (2013) by  John Aylward ,  Eric Moe's  When Branched Thoughts Murmur in The Wind (2000) and works of Charles Ives and J.S. Bach. Says Mr. Berman, "Ives was a highly trained composer thoroughly steeped in Bach, and like Bach, Ives' first job was as an organist. The similarities between them are audible when they are programmed together. In one tantalizing moment in Ives'  Varied Air and Variations, we even hear an atonal row treated to Bachian chorale harmonization."

Donald Berman has been on the frontlines of new music scholarship, performance and recording for over 30 years. A pianist and scholar of exceptional gifts, he currently serves on the faculties of both Tufts University and the Longy School of Music of Bard College. He is President of the Charles Ives Society, and has been a Fellow at Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Studies. As General Editor of Charles E. Ives: Shorter Works for Piano, Mr. Berman has collaborated with two different publishers to issue a new edition of these important works, in 3 editions published from 2015-2018. From 1998-2008 Mr. Berman curated an immense project which ultimately resulted in a highly praised series of four concerts of unknown and under-appreciated American music at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, and a subsequent 4-CD set, Americans in Rome (BRIDGE 9271). Performance highlights in recent years have focused primarily on solo and chamber music repertoire, combining familiar works by such composers as Scarlatti, Fauré, Chopin, Copland, Bloch, Schubert, Poulenc, Rieger, Kagel and Schoenberg with premieres and seldom performed works by Stucky, Wyner, Chang, Theofanidis, Saariaho, McDonald, Boulez, Cage, Schoenfield, Harbison, Zare, Lieberson, Lerdahl and many others. Mr. Berman's CD of piano works by Martin Boykan (BRIDGE 9434), was called a "wonderful recording" by the New York Times, and was included on the Boston Globe's "Best of Boston" list; he will record an album of Boykan songs later in 2018. He is also finishing up a recording of songs by György Kurtág with soprano Susan Narucki, a frequent collaborator. Another recent project is a recording of George Perle's Serenade for Piano & Orchestra with the Boston Modern Orchestra Project, for release on BMOP Sound. His recording of piano miniatures by Scott Wheeler, Scott Wheeler: Portraits & Tributes, was released by Bridge Records (BRIDGE 9463), and his performance of the New York premiere of these pieces at National Sawdust in 2016 was ultimately broadcast on Performance Today. Other recordings can be found on Accurate, ARSIS Audio, Bridge, CRI, Capstone Records, Centaur, Koch, Naxos, New World Records, Newport Classics and Summitt.

For more information about Donald Berman, call 917-751-8228
and visit kathrynkingmedia.com

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