July 17, 2018
Composer and pianist Philip Glass spent last year celebrating his 80th birthday, complete with the premiere of a new symphony (his 11th) at Carnegie Hall. But don’t think for a moment that he’s ready to slow down.
Settling into the SFJazz Center for a four-night run July 19-22, he’s collaborating with a brilliant cast of musicians, some of whom have played an important role in sustaining his vaunted reputation as one of the era’s most influential composers, while others are new to his mesmerizing insistently repetitive forms.
Glass performs the first two nights with South Korean-born, Dutch-raised harpist Lavinia Meijer and Israeli-born, U.S.-raised cellist Matt Haimovitz, who spent much of his adolescence in Palo Alto. Meijer’s 2012 album “Metamorphosis, The Hours” (Channel Classics) is devoted to transcriptions of Glass’s solo piano works, while 2016’s “The Glass Effect” (Sony Music Canada) features one disc of Glass’s famous “20 Piano Etudes” and a second disc of works by composers inspired by Glass (including Bryce Dessner, Nico Muhly, Nils Frahm, and Ólafur Arnalds).
Haimovitz shares similarly deep ties to Glass. In 2013, he recorded the composer’s Cello Concerto No. 2, a reworking of the film score “Naqoyqatsi,” with Dennis Russell Davies and the Cincinnati Symphony. And last year he premiered Partita No. 2 for Solo Cello at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Mass.
The second half of Glass Fest features the composer playing solo and duets with a diverse cast of pianists drawn from classical music (Russia’s Anton Batagov and Taiwan’s Jenny Lin) and jazz (Aaron Diehl, who’s stepping out on his own after a long, fruitful and Grammy Award-winning run with vocal star Cécile McLorin Salvant).
Details: All concerts 7:30 p.m.; SFJazz Center, San Francisco; $55-$125; 866-920-5299, www.sfjazz.org.
By: ANDREW GILBERT
Read at: The Mercury News