This extraordinary CD sheds light on a phase in German cultural history never before documented with such encyclopedic depth. Here the pianist Steffen Schleiermacher, who has just received further important recognition as an interpreter of twentiethcentury music as the recipient of the ECHO Classics Prize 1998, presents music by select composers from the Bauhaus movement.
March and Myriad
Joseph Matthias Hauer devoted himself to synaesthetic ideas throughout his life and lamented the separation of painting, architecture, and music. This alert, highly imaginative thinker came up with a thousand dodecaphonic "Zwölftonspiele" alone - to the delight of fellow creative artists like Hans Heinz Stuckenschmidt (later a musicologist), who is also represented with a work on this CD: the caustic "March of Alexander the Great over the Bridges of Hamburg."
Machine Death, Musical Drip, and Tango
Along with such caricatures, this CD also includes an anthology of fascinating, strange, and surprising pieces off the all-too-beaten path of music history: a morbid tango by Stefan Wolpe, a piano piece with the intriguing title "einsames getröpfel" ("lonely dripping") by Wladimir Vogel, and the sonatina "Death of the Machines" by the bad boy of the music world, George Antheil.
This journey back to the 1920s is a gripping experience not only because of its compositional rarities but also because of Steffen Schleiermacher's magic touch. This pianist, director of the Ensemble Avantgarde, and important advocate of contemporary music made the critics almost speechless with astonishment with his recent John Cage series: "... a truly outstanding and fascinating musician.“ (Gramophone) "... in künstlerisch musikalischer Hinsicht hervorragend.“ (Klassik heute) "... unas interpretaciones espléndidas.“ (Scherzo) "... d’une qualité artistique et technique étonnante.“ (Diapason)