Poems – Twelve Pieces for Piano

Composer: Thomas Larcher (b. 1963)
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Composer: Thomas Larcher (b. 1963)

Performance date: 07/07/2012

Venue: St. Brendan’s Church

Composition Year: 1976-2010

Duration: 00:19:37

Recording Engineer: Anton Timoney, RTÉ lyric fm

Instrumentation: vn, vc, pf

Instrumentation Category:Pieces for Piano

Artists: Emily Crowley - [piano]
Kevin Jansson - [piano]
Tanya Massey - [piano]
Winifred Massey - [piano]

Poems is a cycle which currently consists of
12 pieces for piano. All the pieces are extremely short and concentrated. My
aim was to undertake a personal exploration of this “miniature form”. Each
title is associated with (auto)biographical connotations of the (tonal) self,
particularly as the starting point for some of these movements delves far back
into my past history. Some of the pieces are very easy. These stand in contrast
to others with specific technical demands (e.g. clusters in ‘MUI 1’, a slightly
prepared piano in ‘eins, zwei, drei, vier, neun’ and the crossing of hands in
‘Frida schläft ein’). 

There is a long-standing tradition of composers writing music for
children, very often for their own children, for instance Bach, Schumann and Bartók.
Larcher has written his Poems in such a way that they are
suitable for performances by children. He has the gift of being able to
transmit his musical ideas using apparently simple means.

During the week the four
children have each had individual masterclasses with the composer to prepare
them for this performance.

Winifred Massey is
nine years old. She has been studying at the Royal Irish Academy of Music under
John O’Conor and Colma Brioscu, and has won many prizes and awards. She also
studies cello and clarinet and is a member of her school orchestra.

Tanya Massey is
fourteen. She also studies at the Royal Irish Academy of Music under John
O’Conor and Colma Brioscu and has won a long list of Cups, Prizes and Awards.
She recently performed in the Debussy 150 celebrations in Dublin. She also
studies violin.

Kevin Jansson is
eleven. He studies with Mary Beattie at the CIT Cork School of Music and has
been a prizewinner in several competitions. He also plays the violin and is a
keen chamber musician.

Emily Crowley is
twelve. She is studying at the CIT Cork school of Music with Susan Cap. She has
been a multiple prize-winner at national and local level. This year she won the
CSM Junior Concerto Competition. She also plays the violin and the concertina.