Arthur Farwell - Piano Music Vol.2
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Label: Toccata Classics
Cat No: TOCC0222
Number of Discs: 1
Release Date: 31st March 2014
From Mesa and Plain, op.20
Tone Pictures (9) after Pastels in Prose, op.7
ArtistsLisa Cheryl Thomas (piano)
The American composer Arthur Farwell (1872–1952) is remembered as the leading member of a group of ‘Indianists’ who used Native American tribal melodies. But Farwell’s stylistic range was much wider than is realised today, taking in elements of impressionism and mild modernism.
This second CD of his piano music presents not only two Indianist pieces but also the early character-pieces Tone Pictures after Pastels in Prose and the experimental Polytonal Studies, which pit two different keys against each other to generate unusual harmonies.
Fanfare hailed Volume 1 of this series with unstinted praise: ‘Lisa Cheryl Thomas is herself of Native American ancestry, and the love she feels for this music is near palpable. Her musicological background work is impeccable, too, as she used facsimiles of Farwell’s manuscripts in preparation for this recording. She pens her own wide-ranging booklet note, also, which itself makes for fascinating reading. Recommended, and the second volume is awaited with enthusiasm’.
Lisa Cheryl Thomas, who holds a doctorate from the University of North Texas, is ideally placed to record Farwell’s ‘Indianist’ music: she is herself of Native American stock, counting members of the Cherokee, Blackfoot and Sioux tribes among her ancestors.
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