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SMALL, H.: Lullaby of War / Renoir's Feast / 3 Etudes in Sound (Rayner, Nasseri)

Composer(s):Small, Haskell
Artist(s) Rayner, Martin, narrator • Nasseri, Soheil, piano
Period(s) Contemporary
Genre Classical Music
Category Instrumental
Catalogue 8.559649
Label Naxos
Quality   320kbps
Download and Stream

American composer Haskell Small ‘has a rich imagination as a composer and an assured mastery of forms. Highly original without being self-consciously modernistic, this music has a sense of traditional structures and values without losing sight of its own era; it is inventive and accessible’ (The Washington Post). His Naxos début disc brings together three of Haskell’s finest works: Lullaby of War, commissioned by acclaimed pianist Soheil Nasseri; Renoir’s Feast, a commission by The Phillips Collection to celebrate the return of their beloved painting, Luncheon of the Boating Party; and Three Etudes in Sound, which explore the piano’s ‘color and sound control’.


Review By,June 2011

War is also also the focus of Haskell Small (born 1948) in Lullaby of War (2007), in which narrator Martin Rayner declaims poetry by Stephen Crane, Walt Whitman and, among others, Joy Harjo (“I smelled the burning grease of corpses after they were lit by the pages of our poems”). The emotions evoked here are predictable, the poetry—most of it little known—appropriate in its antiwar sentiments, and the use of piano (very well played by Soheil Nasseri) frequently original. More interesting in several ways is Renoir’s Feast (2005), which uses a bridge passage along the lines of the Promenade in Pictures at an Exhibition to celebrate a different sort of art from that portrayed by Mussorgsky. Small’s interest here is Renoir’s



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