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Ingrid Karlen
Variations

Ingrid Karlen piano
 
Webern: Variationen für Klavier op. 27
Galina Ustvolskaya: Sonata No. 3 for Piano
Valentin Silvestrov: Elegy
Galina Ustvolskaya: Sonata No. 5 for Piano
Pierre Boulez: Douze notations for piano

Recorded January 1996
ECM New Series 1606
 
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The burnished intensity of Webern's opus 27 provides the touchstone for this recital, the ECM debut of a gifted Swiss pianist resolutely committed to the music of the 20th century. In choosing her programme Ingrid Karlen selected pieces which, for all their surface differences, share a kindred striving for the highest possible concentration of musical expressiveness. In the music of Galina Ustvolskaya expressivity is compressed until it unleashes almost volcanic eruptions of energy, vividly conveyed by the pianist. The Elegy of Baltic composer Silvestrov is not without its echoes of the second Viennese school but Webern's presence is unmistakable in the work that closes this album, Boulez's Douze Notations, written in 1945.