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Bernd Alois Zimmermann's "Monologues" initiate a dialogue between composers and works full of creative power and musical joy. Taking this as their inspiration, the Neeb Piano Duo have put together their debut programme, which – enhanced by the sonic possibilities of percussion – evokes the world of the “spontaneous, associative, dreamlike, even trance-like” (B. A. Z.). more

Claude Debussy | Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart | Johannes X. Schachtner | Bernd Alois Zimmermann

"The playing of the piano duo Neeb is excellent. Debussy and Schachtner are joined by the percussionists Christian Benning and Patrick Stapelton. Together, this results in an imaginative and exciting sound mixture of no less exciting and extremely original transcriptions." (Pizzicato)

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Claude Debussy, Johannes X. Schachtner (Arranger)Christian Benning | Patrick Stapleton | Klavierduo Neeb

Jeux – Poème dansé (arr. for two pianos and percussion by J. X. Schachtner) (17:50)

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart | Klavierduo Neeb Piano Concerto No. 21 in C Major, K. 467 (14:23) Klavierduo Neeb

I. Allegro (arr. for two pianos by Piano Duo Neeb) (14:23)

Johannes X. Schachtner Bach.Choral.Exerzitien (24:44) Christian Benning | Patrick Stapleton | Klavierduo Neeb

I. Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme (BWV 645) (05:30)
II. Liebster Jesu, wir sind hier (BWV 706 / 730 / 731) (04:27)
III. Herzlich tut mich verlangen (BWV 727) (01:17)
IV. Vater unser im Himmelreich (BWV 636) (02:08)
V. Lobt Gott, ihr Christen allzugleich (BWV 732) (01:27)
VI. Wer nur den lieben Gott lässt walten (BWV 691) (03:06)
VII. Vater unser im Himmelreich (BWV 682) – Hommage à György Kurtág (06:49)

Bernd Alois Zimmermann Monologues for Two Pianos (18:01) Klavierduo Neeb



Bonustracks (03:17)

This bonus track is only available as a download!

SuperInvention. Invention No. 6 for Two Pianos and Percussion (03:17)

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Details

déjà-rêvé
Dialogues across time
article number: 97.813
EAN barcode: 4022143978134
price group: BCA
release date: 5. January 2024
total time: 78 min.

Bonus Material

Informationen

​With Bernd Alois Zimmermann's Monologues, the piano duo consisting of Vincent and Sophie Neeb feature a rarely-played masterwork as the centerpiece of their debut album. They are "dialogues across time between dreamers, lovers, those who suffer, and those who pray," as the composer describes his work, which was premiered in 1965 and, with its ingenious collages, offers a foray through music history. 
Taking inspiration from this, the programme is rounded out by a contrasting selection of pieces quoted in Zimmermann's work: via this inner connection, compositions by Bach and Debussy, creatively arranged for two pianos and percussion by Johannes Xaver Schachtner, and a Mozart arrangement by the Neeb Piano Duo enter into a unique dialogue. 
Together with percussionists Christian Benning and Patrick Stapleton, the Neeb Piano Duo explore surreal dream worlds that are at once playfully light and enigmatically profound.

Reviews

Gramophone
Gramophone | March 2024 | David Fanning | March 1, 2024 | source: https://www.gram...

Ever since Bartók’s 1937 Sonata, the medium of two pianos and percussion has exerted a compelling fascination on contemporary composers, not leastMehr lesen

Ever since Bartók’s 1937 Sonata, the medium of two pianos and percussion has exerted a compelling fascination on contemporary composers, not least among them Bernd Alois Zimmermann, whose Monologues, in his 1964 arrangement of the pianos-and-orchestra original of four years earlier, is the main feature of this new disc.

The Monologues are described by the composer as ‘dialogues across time between dreamers, lovers, those who suffer, and those who pray’. Sadly, the music itself scarcely lives up to that characterisation. Its chief value, rather, is as a document of incipient postmodernism, when combining serial fragmentation with quotation (from Gregorian chant to Messiaen) felt like a release rather than a mere shifting of cells within a masochistic self-incarceration block. Performances of fearless concentration and a recording of pristine quality do something to redeem the piece. But to hear what can be done in this medium and with something like this aesthetic, when aural acuity and poetic sensibility really get to work, try George Crumb’s Makrokosmos III (1974).

Or indeed try Johannes Schachtner’s creative transformations of six Bach chorales. These are true adventures in harmonic and timbral recolouring, ranging from respectful reimagining to quizzical time-travelling to drastic confrontation. Played with energy and commitment, as here, they are captivating in the instant and varied enough to reward repeated hearing.

Schachtner’s arrangement of Debussy’s Jeux is deft and dashing, qualities matched by the performance, producing a melange of colours that is almost as entrancing as the orchestral original. Unsurprisingly, metallophones and other tuned percussion are much to the fore, which serves to bring the element of orientalism to the surface.

The first movement of Mozart’s K467 Concerto is included because it is among those pieces referenced in Zimmermann’s Monologues. However, as resourceful as the arrangement is, not least in the cadenza, it cannot easily escape associations with conservatoire studios and auditions. In fact it is precisely the element of dialogue that suffers, through the confusion of orchestral and solo lines, if anything emphasised by playing that treads a fine line between crisp and clattery.

The disc also contains an uncredited piece that goes by the title Superinvention: a witty reworking from Carnival of the Animals, but not described in the booklet note or mentioned in the track-listing. Overall, then, this is an auspicious debut recording from the young brother-and-sister team of Klavierduo Neeb, but the programme itself offers mixed rewards.
Ever since Bartók’s 1937 Sonata, the medium of two pianos and percussion has exerted a compelling fascination on contemporary composers, not least

Radio Bremen
Radio Bremen | 11.02.2024 "Klassikwelt", 19:00 Uhr | Wilfried Schäper | February 11, 2024 | source: https://www.brem... BROADCAST

Einen schönen guten Abend und herzlich willkommen. Ein blutjunges und brillantes Klavierduo, Musik des 17-jährigen Hans Werner Henze, einMehr lesen

Einen schönen guten Abend und herzlich willkommen. Ein blutjunges und brillantes Klavierduo, Musik des 17-jährigen Hans Werner Henze, ein „Heidelberger Haydn“ und ein erstaunliches Debüt mit Musik von Franz Liszt – nur einige Schwerpunkte der kommenden drei Stunden hier auf Bremen Zwei. Dazu auch ein CD-Tipp meiner Kollegin Sophia Fischer über das neue Album der türkischen Pianistin Büsra Kayigci, die gleichzeitig auch Architektin ist.
Im Mai des letzten Jahres war ich zu einem Konzert im Bremer Sendesaal. Da hat damals ein junges Klavierduo gespielt, die Geschwister Sophie und Vincent Neeb. Ich kannte die beiden nur vom Namen nach, aber ihr Auftritt im Sendesaal hat mich umgehauen. So ein brillantes, intelligentes und hochmusikalisches Spiel an 2 Klavieren habe ich selten gehört. Sophie und Vincent Neeb haben im Bremer Sendesaal gleich 2 CDs mit einem sehr ungewöhnlichen Repertoire aufgenommen. Wir starten mit dem ersten Satz aus Mozarts berühmtem Klavierkonzert C-Dur, Köchelnummer 467. Sophie und Vincent Neeb haben es für 2 Klaviere bearbeitet, und das funktioniert erstaunlich gut…

Musik: Mozart – 14´23 (audite 97.813, Track 2)

Ein bekanntes Stück in neuer Verpackung – der erste Satz aus Mozarts Klavierkonzert Nr. 21 in C-Dur, arrangiert für 2 Klaviere von Sophie und Vincent Neeb. Die beiden spielen diese gelungene Bearbeitung auf ihrer brandneuen Platte „Déja-revé“ mit Stücken von Mozart bis zur Moderne. Das junge und wirklich extrem begabte Duo hat gerade gleich 2 Debüt-CDs veröffentlicht. Beide sind übrigens im akustisch traumhaften Sendesaal Bremen entstanden. Später noch mehr vom Klavierduo Vincent und Sophie Neeb hier in Klassikwelt auf Bremen Zwei.
Die Neeb-Geschwister sind jetzt Mitte 20. […]
Einen schönen guten Abend und willkommen. In diese Stunde starten wir mit einem jungen und tollen Klavierduo. Die Geschwister Sophie und Vincent Neeb haben gerade gleich 2 Debüt-CDs veröffentlicht. Das Repertoire der Alben ist breit gestreut, reicht von Bach über Mozart bis hin zu Rachmaninoff und Bernd Alois Zimmermann. Im Mai des vergangenen Jahres habe ich das Klavierduo Neeb live im Bremer Sendesaal gehört. Das war ein Superkonzert mit 2 jungen Spitzenpianisten. Die beiden spielen atemberaubend gut zusammen. Bachs Konzert für 2 Klaviere nach dem berühmten Doppelkonzert für 2 Violinen spielen Sophie und Vincent Neeb mit einem fast „jazzigen“ Drive und ganz viel Temperament…

Musik: Bach – 13´25 (audite 97.814, Tracks 10 – 12)

Tolles Spiel an 2 Klavieren von Sophie und Vincent Neeb. Das war Johann Sebastian Bachs Konzert c-moll nach dem berühmten Doppelkonzert für 2 Violinen. Vincent Neeb hat es für 2 Klaviere ohne Orchester bearbeitet. Zu hören ist diese mitreißende Version auf dem Debüt-Album des Neeb-Klavierduos mit dem schönen Titel „Sparks of Spirit“. Sophie und Vincent Neeb, 2 großartige und hochbegabte Musiker, von denen man bestimmt noch viel hören wird!
Einen schönen guten Abend und herzlich willkommen. Ein blutjunges und brillantes Klavierduo, Musik des 17-jährigen Hans Werner Henze, ein

RBB Kulturradio
RBB Kulturradio | Samstag 13.01.2024, 18-19 Uhr "Talente und Karrieren" | Dirk Hühner | January 13, 2024 | source: https://www.rbb-... BROADCAST "TALENTE UND KARRIEREN"
Träume und Dialoge: Das Klavierduo Neeb

Die Geschwister Sophie und Vincent Neeb haben sich für ihr Debüt-Album ein verschachteltes Programm vorgenommen: Sie spielen ein Stück von BerndMehr lesen

Die Geschwister Sophie und Vincent Neeb haben sich für ihr Debüt-Album ein verschachteltes Programm vorgenommen: Sie spielen ein Stück von Bernd Alois Zimmermann, in dem Zitate von Bach, Mozart und Debussy vorkommen. Und sie ergänzen die Stücke, aus denen die Zitate stammen. Dabei werden sie von zwei Percussionisten unterstützt. So schaffen sie neue aufregende Perspektiven. Der französisch-englische Titel der CD lautet auf Deutsch: Wiedergeträumt - Dialoge über die Zeit hinweg.
Die Geschwister Sophie und Vincent Neeb haben sich für ihr Debüt-Album ein verschachteltes Programm vorgenommen: Sie spielen ein Stück von Bernd

www.pizzicato.lu | 04/01/2024 | Alain Steffen | January 4, 2024 | source: https://www.pizz... Raffinierte Transkriptionen

Ausgehend von Bernd Alois Zimmermanns Komposition Monologe für zwei Klaviere, einer meisterhaften Transkription seines Konzertes Dialoge für zweiMehr lesen

Ausgehend von Bernd Alois Zimmermanns Komposition Monologe für zwei Klaviere, einer meisterhaften Transkription seines Konzertes Dialoge für zwei Klaviere und Orchester, erweitert das Klavierduo Neeb das Spielfeld mit Bearbeitungen von Debussys Jeux (Arr. Johannes X. Schachtner), dem Allergro aus Mozarts Klavierkonzert Nr. 21 (Arr. Klavierduo Neeb) und Johannes Schachtners Werk Bach.Choräle.Exerzitien, das Transkription und Rekomposition phantasievoll vereint.

Alle hier versammelten Transkriptionen sind raffiniert ausgearbeitet und behaupten sich als eigenständige Kompositionen. Das Spiel vom Klavierduo Neeb ist exzellent. Bei Debussy und Schachtner kommen dann noch die Perkussionisten Christian Benning und Patrick Stapelton hinzu. Zusammen ergibt das eine phantasievolle und spannende Klangmischung nicht minder spannender und äußerst origineller Transkriptionen.


English Translation:

Based on Bernd Alois Zimmermann's composition Monologe for two pianos, a masterful transcription of his concerto Dialogues for two pianos and orchestra, the piano duo Neeb expands the playing field with arrangements of Debussy’s Jeux (Arr. Johannes X. Schachtner), the Allergro from Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 21 (Arr. Klavierduo Neeb) and Johannes Schachtner’s work Bach.Choräle.Exerzitien, which imaginatively combines transcription and recomposition.

All the transcriptions collected here are cleverly worked out and assert themselves as independent compositions. The playing of the piano duo Neeb is excellent. Debussy and Schachtner are joined by the percussionists Christian Benning and Patrick Stapelton. Together, this results in an imaginative and exciting sound mixture of no less exciting and extremely original transcriptions.
Ausgehend von Bernd Alois Zimmermanns Komposition Monologe für zwei Klaviere, einer meisterhaften Transkription seines Konzertes Dialoge für zwei

www.musicweb-international.com
www.musicweb-international.com | DECEMBER 18, 2023 | Jeffrey Hollander | December 18, 2023 | source: https://musicweb...

The debut recording of the Klavierduo Neeb offers a varied and intriguing program of works for two pianos, with and without added percussion. There isMehr lesen

The debut recording of the Klavierduo Neeb offers a varied and intriguing program of works for two pianos, with and without added percussion. There is much to enjoy in these performances by siblings Vincent and Sophie Neeb, though the unifying idea—the tracing of musical dialogues backwards and forwards across time—works better as an abstract exercise than as a principle of program design.

Bernd Alois Zimmermann’s Monologe (Monologues) for two pianos, from 1964, serves as the focal point for such connections. Zimmermann, a key figure in the German avant-garde of the 1950s and 1960s, was attentive to his musical past, and the mixing and layering of diverse musical materials was a frequent element of his musical style. Monologues, in five sections of different lengths running to approximately 18 minutes in total, is characterized by atmospheric effects, frenetic bursts of energy, extreme registral shifts, all of which requires virtuosic musical coordination between the two pianists. Out of this modernist complexity emerge recognizable musical ‘memories’ or quotations. Bach’s ‘Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme’ and ‘Vater unser im Himmelreich’ combine with melodies from Messiaen’s L’Ascension. Atmospheric snippets of Debussy’s ‘Feux d’artifice’, from his second book of Préludes, and his ballet Jeux slide in and out of view. Bits of Mozart and Beethoven figuration appear, reminiscent perhaps of years of keyboard training. The effect is not of pastiche. Zimmermann is suggesting that our past musical experiences remain with us even as we generate new ones, an idea that is very much of the present; composers of our time comfortably draw on music of all styles and all of music history as source material.

The performance of Monologues is generally brisk and straightforward, well-played by Klavierduo Neeb. The players effectively convey the feeling of memories emerging from a distance (‘wie aus der Ferne’ as the Dutchman sings in Der fliegende Holländer). The gold-standard performance remains the 1979 recording by Alfons and Aloys Kontarsky, the dedicatees to whom Zimmermann’s musical language comes utterly naturally, still available as a download (DG). I’m also particularly fond of Huber and Thomet (2013, Wergo), whose more relaxed traversal is loving and cogent. Several other performances have much to offer as well. In this impressive company of duo-pianists, the Klavierduo Neeb more than hold their own.

To explore the idea of musical dialogues moving back and forth across time, Klavierduo Neeb has chosen some of the works quoted in the Zimmermann, and has subjected them to further arrangement. In two of these works, the Neebs are joined by two excellent percussionists, Christian Benning and Patrick Stapleton.

I’m quite impressed with Johannes X. Schachtner’s homage to Bach (and to György Kurtág’s four-hand transcriptions of Bach) entitled Bach.Choral.Exerzitien, arrangements of seven of Bach’s chorale preludes for two pianos and percussion, including both ‘Wachet auf’ and ‘Vater unser im Himmelreich’. The composer exhibits a striking variety of arrangement techniques, and a lovely ear for sonority and timbral effect, and the performance is first-rate. The worklist on Schachtner’s website suggests that he, like Zimmermann, is attentive to music of the past, as well as prolific.

Another arrangement by Schachtner for two pianos and percussion opens the disc: Debussy’s ballet Jeux, which the composer called a ‘poème dansé’. Again, the arrangement for these forces is attractive, with lovely sonorities. Compared to Jean-Efflam Bavouzet’s arrangement of Jeux for two pianos alone, which is tremendously effective, the added percussion does little to propel the flighty, improvisatory narrative. Indeed, the synchronization of four players here results in an overly cautious and rhythmically rigid performance, a Jeux with less momentum and shape than (in Bavouzet’s arrangement) as recorded by Bavouzet and François-Frédéric Guy on a lovely disc of two-piano arrangements (Chandos CHAN), or Vladimir and Vovka Ashkenazy in two-piano works by Debussy and Ravel (Decca).

The final work on the disc is the first movement of Mozart’s C-major piano concerto, K. 467, arranged brilliantly for two pianos by the Neebs. Snippets of this movement appear in Zimmermann’s Monologues, though that connection is tenuous. All of the orchestral and solo material is present; the solo passages have been filled out with playful counterpoint and filigree, giving this the feeling of a double concerto, and the movement culminates in a lively cadenza. This is joyous playing, perhaps lacking only the last degree of flexibility.

The digital download adds a bonus track not on the physical CD: another Bach-inspired composition by Schachtner, entitled SuperInvention. Invention No. 6 for Two Pianos and Percussion, which also communes with Saint-Saëns and Strauss along the way. Quite delightful.

The recorded sound by audite is excellent, and the presentation is very attractive. The program is nicely varied, with the piano-plus-percussion arrangements sitting comfortably alongside the Zimmermann; if the Mozart is more of an outlier, that surely doesn’t matter much. I look forward to the next offering from this talented piano duo.
The debut recording of the Klavierduo Neeb offers a varied and intriguing program of works for two pianos, with and without added percussion. There is

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