What are you looking for in pieces of new piano music? Margaret Leng Tan

Margaret Leng TanPhoto by Michael Dames I am fascinated by music that breaks new ground, that takes the piano (and the toy piano) to its ultimate frontiers. For this reason I am drawn to the pioneering pianism of Cage, Cowell and Crumb, and that of their spiritual children: composer-inventor Alvin Lucier, and the new generation […]

What are you looking for in pieces of new piano music? Lois Svard

Lois SvardPhoto by Dale Hourlland I have always been fascinated with the music of composers who push the envelope, whether it is Franz Liszt flirting with atonality in the 1880s, Henry Cowell playing on the strings of the piano for the first time in the 1920s, or Annea Lockwood using super-ball mallets, water glasses and […]

What are you looking for in pieces of new piano music? Kathleen Supové

Kathleen SupovéPhoto by Robin Holland My first reaction is: I hardly ever find it! A more considered reaction: the main thing I look for is some kind of obsessiveness. I’m especially attracted to pieces that are difficult, relentless, with fistfuls of notes, that keep me up nights figuring out how to play them. That kind […]

What are you looking for in pieces of new piano music? Julie Steinberg

Julie SteinbergPhoto by Earl Wood When I consider a new score, I’m immediately on the lookout for craft and content. I try not to be ideological in my choices, but rather to expose myself to many styles and techniques. Naturally I’m drawn to music that is well written for the instrument, which is organically pianistic […]

What are you looking for in pieces of new piano music? Haydée Schvartz

Haydée SchvartzPhoto by Vivi Zabaleta Isn’t there anything else to be invented in piano music composition? Is there any resource that can get us away from the heavy trace contained by the tradition of piano writing? Some way of denaturalizing the ‘self sufficient’ instrument? How is it possible to get rid of the cultural historical […]

What are you looking for in pieces of new piano music? Vicki Ray

Vicki RayPhoto by Richard Hines If I’m looking for something specific in a piece of new piano music then I might not see/hear what’s really there. So I try to open to the first page with no expectations. That’s one of my favorite moments: that first look. What tends to grab me is: interesting textures, […]

What are you looking for in pieces of new piano music? Joshua Pierce

Joshua PiercePhoto by Peter Schaaf As to what I’m looking for in a contemporary piano composition—at first thought, I’m not always sure… But then, in thinking and re-thinking more about this question, many interesting ideas/thoughts come to mind. I guess one has to start, generically speaking, with a group of composers—known, or not so well […]