Albanian Piano Music

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This album contains punchy folkloristic suites, dances and miniatures from a musically neglected corner of Europe. Presented by Piano Classics, a label of Brilliant Classics.

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There are two generations of Albanian composers represented on this invaluable guide to the country’s piano music. Simon Gjoni, Cesk Zadeja and Tonin Harapi belong to the first generation of professional composers from Albania, all born in the 1920s, studying abroad but returning to the capital and artistic hub, Tirane, to lead cultural life while the country suffered from comparative international isolation in the 1950s and 60s. It is to this later generation that Pellumb Vorpsi, Thomas Simaki and Vasil Tole belong.

Due to its extreme isolation the musical development in Albania kept its own pace and direction, independent of what was happening in other countries. This new recording presents a unique overview of the music by Albanian composers of the 20th century. From the 1950´s on the musical life received a new impetus in the development of musical education systems and the founding of several symphony orchestras, and composers were inspired to write in a new national style, which was rooted in the rich folk music tradition of the country.

This album marks the debut of Marsida Koni (b.1981) on Piano Classics. An Albanian native, she grew up in her home country and made her broadcast debut at the age of just nine, and her orchestral concerto debut two years later. Having graduated from the university in Tirane, she pursued further studies in Italy, where she now makes her career. She has a recorded partnership with the clarinettist Piero Vincenti, and she is artistic director of the Lazar Berman International Piano Competition in Camerino in the Marche region of northern Italy.

Composer: Thomas Simaku, Pëllumb Vorpsi, Kozma Lara, Feim Ibrahim, Cesk Zadeja, Simon Gjoni, Vasil Tole, Limos Dizdari, Tonin Harapi
Artist: Marsida Koni (piano)

Brilliant Classics:


00:00:00 Thomas Simaku: Duaje emrin tend
00:03:18 Pëllumb Vorpsi: Variacione mbi një temë popullore – Balladë

Kozma Lara:
00:12:39 Dhuratë për mësuesen
00:14:03 Valle
00:15:14 Ballada No. 4 “Pastorale”
00:18:36 Këngë
00:21:31 Prelude
00:23:10 Marsh
00:24:39 Vals

Feim Ibrahim:
00:26:33 Tokatë
00:30:25 Valle
00:32:23 Valle e vogël
00:33:40 Nina nana

Cesk Zadeja:
00:35:10 Humoreska
00:37:06 Tokata

00:40:17 Simon Gjoni: Luleborë
00:41:59 Vasil Tole: Rondo

Limos Dizdari:
00:52:15 Peisazh ne ’36
00:55:18 Valle

Tonin Harapi:
00:57:53 Ja gëzimi kthen përsëri
00:58:40 Moll’ e kuqe top sheqere
00:59:47 Një dhembje e vogël
01:00:51 Valle
01:02:16 Romancë
01:03:18 Bisedë
01:05:16 Gjeta një bilbil
01:06:30 Valle
01:07:23 Këngë

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