Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Copland: Complete Solo Piano Works, Vol. 2

"Commissioned to collaborate with choreographer Agnes de Mille, Copland supplied the music for the ballet Rodeo, which is centered on the lifestyle of the American Southwest ranch country -- a 'cowboy ballet.' From it, the composer extracted Four Dance Episodes and compiled an orchestral suite from which he arranged the solo piano version. The episodes represent American dance forms, full of zesty exuberance and life, mixed with feelings of nostalgia and lyricism. 1. Buckaroo Holiday opens with an energetic, syncopated version of the C major scale followed by jazz-derived polyrhythms. The two main themes are derivations from the folksongs, 'Sis Joe' and 'If he'd be a Buckaroo by his trade.' The incorporation of highly syncopated rhythms, blues elements, and the old ragtime bass makes this piece an exhilaratingly energizing thrill. II. Corral Nocturne serves as a direct contrast to Buckaroo Holiday; it is simple and expressive. While it does not utilize actual folksongs, it is in song form and uses soft, triadic figures to create a restful atmosphere. Ranch House Party is not counted as an episode but really does sound like a party! It is written in ragtime style with the left hand sustaining an octave bass ostinato ..." (CD notes by Young Kim).

View catalog record here!


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