CLICK IMAGE ABOVE FOR PREVIEW AND TO HEAR AN EXCERPT FROM "JULIA," FOR SOLO PIANO.
Jon Appleton: The Russian Music 3 CD set. February 2009.
CD1: Piano Music
CD2: Chamber Music
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Minkyung Oh, piano
Audio CD $15.00, January 2014
SPECIAL OFFER: buy both Appleton CDs for $25.00 (reg. $30.00)
Jon Appleton: The Russian Music
I've been a follower of Jon Appleton's music since the early Synclavier days when he was known as an innovative composer of electronic pieces. But, perhaps because we're both pianists at heart, it's his classical compositions that have most interested me and stayed in my head and heart. Rooted in the classical tradition but thoroughly contemporary, Jon's compositions collected here are melodic and memorable; always interesting; often surprising; and absolutely reflective of his two national identities: American and Russian.
These wonderful compositions reflect a complex and vibrant person of many moods, attuned to the humor, exuberance and complexity of the world. But it's in his classical compositions that Jon reveals his deepest emotions, striving, as have all great composers, to say something lasting and profound about the beauty and poignancy of life itself.
Personal favourites are the "Turkina Suite", written for the two-piano duo of Julia and Galina Turkina; the haunting and lyrical "Julia," for solo piano, written for Julia Turkina after the death of her sister; the "Concerto Grosso" and "Fantasy for Cello and String Orchestra" with virtuoso performances by cellist Alexander Zagorinsky, and the Piano Concerto, which opens with one of the most beautiful themes Jon has yet written and closes with variations on traditional American melodies, effectively taking us on a musical journey into Jon's Russian heritage and back home again.
JON APPLETON is a composer and author born in Hollywood, California in 1939. He was educated at Reed College, the University of Oregon, and Columbia University. His work includes instrumental, choral, and electro-acoustic music. Appleton is best known for the latter, much of it composed for the Synclavier, a digital performance instrument he helped develop.
Appleton has been awarded Guggenheim, Fulbright, National Endowment for the Arts and American-Scandinavian Foundation fellowships. He has taught at Dartmouth College, Stanford University, Keio University (Japan), University of California, Santa Cruz, and each year at the Teremin Center at the Moscow Conservatory of Music.