Piano Music of Martin Matalon

Martin Matalon

Salome Jordania, piano
Eve Payeur and Julián Macedo, percussion
David Adamcyck, sound designer (electronics)
New Juilliard Ensemble / Joel Sachs, conductor



LIT Instrumentalists
Best Classical Pianists - Elena Klionsky
LIT Instrumentalists
Best Female Instrumentalists - Elena Klionsky
LIT Instrumentalists
Best Pianists - Elena Klionsky

“The wide range of techniques and expressive forms Argentine-French composer Martin Matalon has employed over this century to date are reflected on this disc’s four compositions… Russian-born, and now US-based, Elena Klionsky is clearly committed to this stylistically diverse repertoire, and has the dexterity, inner fires, and sensitivity to win audiences to it…. Lyon-based Matalon figures among a few accomplished composers currently proposing fresh, even sparkling directions for ‘classical’ music. For all the garment-rending of those who regard art music as in decline – what with ageing audiences and an uncertain industry – this recording indicates that the production of ground-breaking music faces no such danger – and only such material is likely to win over new generations of musically curious listeners.”
Bert Bailey, MusicWeb International [July 2023]
"All performers and performances are top notch, with Ms. Klionsky holding forth heroically and magically, with Salome Jordania taking the second piano part with a real flair as needed, with the New Juilliard Ensemble under Joel Sachs doing a great job in the chamber orchestral mode as needed, and finally with strong percussion appearances by Eve Payeur and Julien Macedo as called for, and intelligent electronics by David Adamcyck... All four works bring to us very effective and atmospheric cosmic projecting in ways that make us want to hear it all again and again... All four pieces have an original yet admirably Modernist thrust that triumphs thanks to the excellent performances by Elena Klionsky and company. Bravo!"
Grego Applegate Edwards [August 2022]
"[Matalon's] music is colorful, interesting, and compelling... Two forms of time—one concerned with pulse, one concerned with the extension of individual moments—form a dramatic tableau in this very effective piece... Elena Klionsky is the soloist on all four pieces. Her endurance is extraordinary; even in quieter sections, Matalon requires almost constant trills, tremolos, repeated notes, and other taxing effects... Her articulation in rapid passagework is incisive without becoming unpleasantly percussive. She approaches passages of relentless chordal percussion with utmost confidence and plays passages of sparsely scored filigree with utmost delicacy. All the musicians involved show considerable range of color and tone, along with what strikes me as a thoroughgoing understanding of and feel for Matalon’s style. The sound quality is excellent throughout... Not only is this a nice introduction to Matalon’s music; it would be a fine entry point into contemporary gestural, color-centered music for listeners whose standard fare is more traditional."
Myron Silberstein, Fanfare [March/April 2023]
"I especially enjoy [Trame IV's] final five minutes, where whirlwinds of activity finally wind down as if exhausted. Terrific playing by the New Juilliard Ensemble... I greatly enjoyed this entire program."
American Record Guide [January/February 2023]
"As fans of contemporary classical music will want to take note, an exciting CD was released this year dedicated to music by Argentinian composer Martin Matalon... Having remembered mostly personal attributes of sensitivity, delicacy, and a Romantic aura, I was not prepared for the playing of a tigress that emerged in several of this CD’s works! From relentless ostinato patterns and clangorous clusters to trills and soft coloristic effects, and everything in between, Ms. Klionsky shows that she is not to be limited to any one niche. Mr. Matalon, then a student of Vincent Persichetti, has also clearly forged his own paths, in a way that intertwines all the arts... All in all, this CD represents a formidable achievement both for the composer and for the performers. Audiophiles, particularly contemporary music and electronic music buffs, will surely want a copy."
New York Concert Review [January 2023]
"[Dos Formas del Tiempo] gives Klionsky plenty of opportunities to showcase her rhythmic skill, expressive abilities and close attention to dynamics... Matalon’s piano music provokes one to consider the many ways in which the piano, through so many different designs and forms and over so many years, has remained a primary instrument of choice for composers seeking an effective way to communicate their ideas."
Mark J. Estren, InfoDad [September 2022]
Born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in 1958, Martin Matalon studied with Jacques-Louis Monod and founded Music Mobile, a New York-based ensemble devoted to contemporary repertoire (1989-96). Matalon won the Charles Ives Scholarship from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters in 1986 and was awarded a Fulbright scholarship to France in 1988. He was honored by the city of Barcelona in 2001, and received a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2005, Le Prix de L’Institut de France Academie des Beaux Arts in 2005 and Grand Prix des Lycéens in 2007. Matalon’s first collaboration with the Institut de Recherche et Coordination Acoustique/Musique (IRCAM) was on Rosa profunda, music for an exhibition at the Pompidou Centre on The Universe of Borges. The following year, IRCAM commissioned a score for the restored version of Fritz Lang’s Metropolis. He also composed scores for three surrealistic films by Luis Buñuel: Un Chien Andalou (1927), L’Age d’or (1931) and Las Hurdes (1932). Matalon’s catalog includes a large number of chamber and orchestral works as well as music for opera, hörspiel (radio drama), dance and the theater. His Trames series features solo concerto writing and chamber music works. Traces series, conceived for solo instruments and real-time electronic processing, constitutes a compositional diary for the author, representing an important component of his catalog. Matalon has written for the Orchestre de Paris, Orchestre National de France, Orquesta de Barcelona y Catalunya, Ensemble Intercontemporain, Les Percussions de Strasbourg, Court-Circuit, MusicFabrik, Ensemble Modern, and others. He has been the composer-in-residence with the Orchestre National de Lorraine and the Arsenal, La Muse en Circuit electronic studios, Stavanger Festival, Festival Les Arcs and Aspects de la Musique Aujourd’hui in Caen. Matalon’s opera, L’ombre de Venceslao, received 21 performances in nine opera houses throughout France during the 2016-2018 seasons. Matalon earned a Bachelor’s degree in composition from the Boston Conservatory and Master’s degree from Juilliard, and is the composition professor at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique et de Danse de Lyon. [ www.martinmatalon.com ]
Elena Klionsky began playing piano at the age of five in her native St. Petersburg, Russia, and gave her first public performance at the age of six. Upon her family’s relocation to the United States, she was mentored by Isaac Stern for many years, and received the prestigious Petschek Scholarship at The Juilliard School of Music. While in the High School for the Performing Arts in New York, she performed weekly on Dr. Stuart Grayson’s Science of Mind programs in Alice Tully Hall, making her orchestral debut there with the National Music Week Orchestra. Elena, who was named a Promising Young Artist by the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts, made her professional orchestral debut before an audience of 15,000, performing Beethoven’s Choral Fantasy with the Chattanooga Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Vakhtang Jordania on a program she shared with Itzhak Perlman. Since then, her solo recitals, orchestral appearances and chamber music and duo piano performances have taken her throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico and across Europe and Asia. In her native Russia, Elena has performed with the leading orchestras, including the Moscow State Symphony, St. Petersburg Camerata, Ural Philharmonic Orchestra and Russian Federal Orchestra; she was the first foreigner to open the annual Moscow Stars Festival in the Great Hall of the Moscow Conservatory. Elena, who was honored to perform at the White House as part of the National Treasures event, has built a vast performance repertoire, including music of Beethoven, Chopin, Liszt, Mozart and Schubert, as well as works by Prokofiev, Rachmaninoff, Scriabin, Shostakovich and American composer, Vincent Persichetti. She also performs and records music written for her by composers from around the world. Klionsky has been a Steinway Artist since 2008 and records for Steinway’s new SPIRIO Player Piano. She studied at The Juilliard School, beginning at the age of eleven in the Pre-College Division and subsequently earned her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees. [ www.elenaklionsky.com ]

TRAME IV — Concerto for Piano and Eleven Instruments (2001)
Commissioned by BIT 20 Ensemble as part of Projection Fondation 3,
Ensemble Court-Circuit , Ensemble Recherche and BIT 20 Ensembles.
Dedicated to Eric Andreasson

ARTIFICIOS for Solo Piano (2014)
Dedicated to Elena Klionsky

DOS FORMAS DEL TIEMPO for Solo Piano (2000)
Commissioned by Piano aux Jacobins Festival
Dedicated to Lorenzo Matalon

LA MAKINA for Two Pianos, Two Percussionists and Electronics (2007) 22:34
Commissioned by Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Music Media & Technology (CIRMMT) of McGill University, with financial assistance from The Langlois Foundation for Art, Science and Technology.
Dedicated to David Adamcyck

MSR Classics