Vier Fantasien für Klavier(Four Fantasies for Piano) op. 15 (1987)
Boosey & Hawkes / Bote & Bock
Alte Oper, Hindemith-Saal, Frankfurt
Alan Marks, piano /
Four Fantasies for piano – a merely subjective description –
In this case, the title Fantasy does not imply improvisation or a story told in music but an atmospheric image which originates from the composer’s imagination – or, more precisely, each of the four pieces originates from a dream he had and all four are connected.
The first, In Silence, is meant as a prelude to the following three pieces. In silence and stillness, our thoughts move more freely and clearly, and certain sounds announce themselves, although still indistinct; however, everything remains silent and time poses no problem.
Marble sea: a vastness of space, gentle, perpetual heaving; everything is clear and cool, the resounding stillness of the basilicas is buried here, and in between there are hard, angular splinters, something crumbling, disintegrating, the left arm of a Venus, a Jupiter … The light is caught on the still shiny surfaces, it is winter, sometimes the eyes hurt. There is a movement which is slow and large, not caused by us; it remains on its own, and we know that it will continue when we have turned away.
Travelling, we see images, landscapes and cities rushing by, almost like waxworks, in a great hurry and a jolly mood. Speed is intoxicating, the blood pressure rises, as does the sensitivity, a compressed feeling of anticipated pleasure – we are captivated by a view. A moment is blown up to infinity, impresses itself on our minds, where it remains even if the images continue to change; it still belongs to us. The journey will go on.
The West is where we live: it is where the sun always sets and where we have the familiar feeling of time passed by. Once more there is the painful craving for past beauty and a beautiful past, are we sick if we enjoy that? – irritating sentimentality, Europe is touching, isn’t it, Lxet us sing “Un bel di, vedremo”, still loved. Secretly. And the present? The future? – Tomorrow.
"The pieces are colourfully imagined – the composer makes use of various dynamic nuances and pedal effects. The piano score is brilliant: the pianist has to cope with taxing elements such as rapid runs, parallel intervals and successive trills. The work more than proves Glanert’s talent – it draws attention to the promising career of this young composer." (Peter Roggenkamp, Neue Musikzeitung, Oct/Nov 1989)
Alan Marks, piano