performed by Maki Namekawa, real-time visualization by Cori O’lan
The 20 piano etudes were begun in the mid 90s and new music was added to this collection until 2013. Philip Glass writes about them: ”Their purpose was two-fold. First, to provide new music for my solo piano concerts. And second, for me to expand mv piano technique with music that would enhance and challenge my playing. Hence, the name Etudes, or “studies.” The result is a body of work that has a broad range of dynamic and tempo. The second set of 10 Etudes (now referred to as Book 2) has turned out quite differently. Just as Etudes 1-10 (Book 1) took up the technical matters of piano playing, Book 2 is an extension of a musical journey undertaken in the last 10 years. The subsequent Etudes have been about the language of music itself—developing new strategies regarding rhythmic and harmonic movement. The last Etude (No. 20) was composed just after Godfrey Reggio’s latest film, Visitors, and follows closely its music.“
Maki Namekawa’s recent engagements include the Royal Concertgebouw Orkest Amsterdam, Munich Philharmonic, Munich Chamber Orchestra with the Ligeti Piano Concerto, Dresden Philharmonie, the Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra, and Bruckner Orchester Linz. Namekawa performed Hovhaness’s Lousadzak with Seattle Symphony Orchestra conducted by Dennis Russell Davies. In 2013 Namekawa performed the world premiere of the Complete Etudes for Piano by Philip Glass at the Perth International Arts Festi- val with Philip Glass. Together with Dennis Russell Davies, she has been collaborating with the Ars Electronica Festi- val for many years to realize a series of live performances for piano with real-time computer-generated visuals.