by Judith Lang Zaimont
Joanne Polk, Piano
Albany Records Troy 617
Judith Lang Zaimont, a Tennessee native who grew up in New York, and now teaches at the University of Minnesota, is an internationally recognized composer whose music is characterized by its expressive strength, dynamism, and rhythmic vitality. Her musical language is coloristic, and she has contributed significant works to virtually every genre.
The 3-movement Sonata for Piano Solo is especially significant. The piece was premiered in May of 2000 at the Phillips Collection in Washington D.C. and was cited as the most important solo piano piece of 1999 by Piano & Keyboard magazine in its great piano compositions of the 20th Century timeline. It is the composer's largest solo statement to date for the instrument and has also been performed in New York City and Minneapolis. The third movement, Impronta Digitale, was chosen as a representative American work for the 2001 Van Cliburn Competition and was performed by both of the competition's Gold Medal winners.
Jupiter's Moons, in six movements, was created on a commission from Focus on Piano Literature 2000 and was premiered by Paul Stewart on June 9, 2000 at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.
The Nocturne: La Fin de Siècle was premiered in New York City in March of 1979 and was chosen for the repertoire list for the 1988 General Motors/ Seventeen Magazine Competition. It has since been performed around the world.
Hesitation Rag was commissioned and premiered by Virginia Eskin in 1997.
The superb performer on this disk is Ms. Zaimont's longtime collaborator and musical interpreter Joanne Polk. You can find much more about her at http://www.msmnyc.edu/catalog/facbio.asp?fid=1008173003.
Judith Zaimont's music appears on two Century lists (Chamber Music America; Piano & Keyboard Magazine), and is the subject of many articles, book chapters and several dissertations. In addition to being the 2003 Commissioned Composer for the San Antonio International Piano Competition, Ms. Zaimont is also the 2002 Composer for the National Federation of Music Clubs, and 2002 Commissioned Composer for the Music Teachers Association of California, and the National Board Member for Composition for the College Music Society (2003-2005).
"All American Appeal", an article about her piano music, was featured in the November/December 1998 issue of Piano & Keyboard magazine, and a composer profile appeared in the April 2003 Clavier.
An Electronic Dialogues interview with Judith Lang Zaimont can be read at the Internet classical music magazine Sequenza 21 - http://www.sequenza21.com/Zaimont.html. You can read "Reflections on an Undescribable Art - Being A Composer," Ms. Zaimont's February 2002 Keynote Speech to the Minnesota Listening List Competition at http://www.jamesarts.com/releases/feb02/JLZ_021202.htm. More information about Ms. Zaimont, including sound clips of many of her compositions, is available at her website http://www.jzaimont.com/.
Sonata for Piano Solo - Joanne Polk, piano
Nocturne: La Fin de Siècle - Joanne Polk, piano
Jupiter's Moons - Joanne Polk, piano
"Hesitation" Rag - Joanne Polk, piano
The disk is available at all fine CD stores, or online from Albany Records at http://www.albanyrecords.com/.