Sample Recital Program #2: Quotations and Homages

A recital featuring newly-written works inspired by a variety of earlier composers and pieces, from Mozart to Brahms to Stravinsky to Messiaen to Carter to Gubaidulina to The Velvet Underground. In a program both serious and lighthearted, older works are brought to new light through piano/s, toy pianos, electronics and multimedia by contemporary composers Daniel Felsenfeld, Tom Flaherty, Vera Ivanova, James Matheson, Missy Mazzoli, Nick Norton, and Peter Yates.

This program is performed in two versions: 21st century version of newly-written homages by major American composers or mixed periods version of selected new works performed together with the older works that directly inspired the new pieces.

(please scroll down for sneak peaks and full program information)

  • Delivered with an authority and unhesitating know-how that left no room for doubt, Shpachenko’s virtuoso program of new music for piano—both solo and electronically fleshed—revealed how convincingly present-day composers can match the prestidigital feats of Liszt and Chopin. Simultaneously, universal statements on life and art, expressed in a heartfelt lyricism still resounding almost audibly, emerged to elevate the afternoon event into something profound… Shpachenko’s thoughtfully ordered offering of uniformly winning pieces, centered on a theme of “quotations and homages,” was an homage to the audience—an inviting, overflowing musical cornucopia, impacting listeners all the more directly in its uninterrupted flow.

    Steven Niles, New Classic LA
  • A bountiful offering of extraordinary piano music combined with highly skilled performances… “6 Fugitive Memories” is a remarkable exposition of historical and influential musical voices, expertly realized by Ms. Shpachenko… The wide variety of density and colors make “Rainbow Tangle” a well balanced tribute to Messiaen’s landmark work… “Down to You is Up” makes effective use of the Velvet Underground material without being derivative, creating a sparkling, original work… “Epitaphs and Youngsters” is a well-balanced multimedia work that memorably captures the essence of its subjects in music, visual art and words… “Bolts of Loving Thunder” displays an impressive range of emotions and exuberance in keeping with a great tradition… “Igor to Please” is visceral and exciting, an amazing ensemble of electronics and piano that calls for virtuosic skill by the soloist.

    Paul Muller, Sequenza21
  • The latest example was pianist Nadia Shpachenko, nominated for a Grammy for her CD Woman at the New Piano: American Music of 2013. Coming in from Southern California, she brought a program of nine different pieces, “Quotations and Homages,” all of recent vintage, including six world premieres Sunday night. The works are responses to music of composers of the past. Despite the conceptual framework, the music covered a broad range of styles — almost entirely tonal. Shpachenko herself is a strong player, with a touch that gives weight and solidity even at low dynamics… It gets wild at times, and Shpachenko played with plenty of power… Shpachenko played expertly with and through the electronics, shaping the dynamics into a rich ambient sound… Eminently worthwhile concert from Shpachenko and her fellow composers.

    George Grella, New York Classical Review

Sneak Peak 1 – “Quotations and Homages” trailer

Sneak Peak 2 – “Debutie” by Vera Ivanova