Primavera I: The Wind Matt Haimovitz
- Gabriella Smith (b. 1991):
- 1Smith: Bare05:25
- David Sanford (b. 1963):
- 2Sanford: Suolo03:31
- David T. Little (b. 1978):
- 3Little: The Crocus Palimpsest04:43
- Nkeiru Okoye (b. 1972):
- 4Okoye: Euba's Dance04:34
- Jorge Sosa (b. 1977):
- 5Sosa: Reimagined Spring06:21
- inti figgis-vizueta (b. 1993):
- 6figgis-vizueta: The Motion Between Three Worlds04:58
- Vijay Iyer (b. 1971):
- 7Iyer: Equal Night09:53
- Luna Pearl Woolf (b. 1973):
- 8Woolf: Diaphanous Grace06:28
- Roberto Sierra (b. 1953):
- 9Sierra: Chloris & Zephyrus05:37
- Asher Sizemore:
- 10Sizemore: Six Graces05:41
- Tod Machover (b. 1953):
- 11Machover: Sorta Voce06:47
- Jake Heggie (b. 1961):
- 12Heggie: Spring Forward05:07
- Laura Elise Schwendinger (b. 1962):
- 13Schwendinger: Fluorescenza07:44
- Lisa Bielawa (b. 1968):
- 14Bielawa: Missa primavera07:38
Info for Primavera I: The Wind
PRIMAVERA I the wind is the first collection in a momentous series encompassing 81 world premieres for solo cello. This digital album presents 14 new commissions by THE PRIMAVERA PROJECT for groundbreaking, multi-Grammy nominated cellist Matt Haimovitz. Each composer responds to Sandro Botticelli’s enigmatic painting, Primavera, and the prophetic large-scale triptych, Primavera 2020, by world-renowned contemporary artist Charline von Heyl.
Framed by Gabriella Smith’s bare, a moving chorale to environmental turmoil and Lisa Bielawa’s Missa Primavera, a hopeful fantasy on Josquin des Pres’ cantus firmi, Vijay Iyer, David Sanford, Nkeiru Okoye, Jorge Sosa, and others bring a multitude of influences from the world of Jazz and Latin music, to Vivaldi and Scriabin.
Recorded in January 2021 at Charline von Heyl’s artist studio near downtown Marfa, Texas, the distinct and diverse contemporary compositional voices bridge the centuries, expanding and redefining the range and repertoire of the solo cello.
THE PRIMAVERA PROJECT is an exploration of music and art as sources of influence and inspiration for each other. During this time of global pandemic and social upheaval, both Primavera paintings’ composition, characters, symbolism, nature and flora, darkness and light, mythology, identity, and spirituality are ripe for new interpretation – as reflected by the newly commissioned pieces on this first installment. The project’s commissions began with nine composers, incorporating a variety of musical languages. Each composer then recommended colleagues to be considered as the next participating composers until a total of 81 composers were selected. All 81 resulting pieces will be recorded for commercial release, with Haimovitz making the next album in Marfa, Texas in late May. PRIMAVERA II will be released in fall 2021.
The distinct and diverse contemporary compositional voices on this album bridge the centuries, expanding and redefining the range and repertoire of the solo cello. Framed by Gabriella Smith’s bare and Lisa Bielawa’s Missa Primavera, Vijay Iyer, David Sanford, Nkeiru Okoye, Jorge Sosa, and others bring a multitude of influences from the world of Jazz and Latin music, to Vivaldi and Scriabin.
THE PRIMAVERA PROJECT is co-directed by Matt Haimovitz and Dr. Jeffrianne Young. The seeds of the project were planted in spring 2019, when Haimovitz and Young visited the Hirshhorn Museum in Washington, D.C., and encountered the paintings of Charline von Heyl. They were immediately drawn to the multi-layered musicality of her paintings, and her whimsical imagination intertwined with literary and historical references. In summer 2019, they experienced a similar epiphany with Botticelli’s Primavera on a visit to the Uffizi in Florence. That fall, Haimovitz and Young reached out to von Heyl, who expressed an appreciation of music and invited them to visit her studio in Marfa, Texas. In late December, the three met – their lively conversation centered around the enduring relevance of Botticelli’s painting.
Haimovitz and Young asked von Heyl if she would ever consider reimagining the Botticelli painting for the 21st Century, and discussion about the idea of commissioning new cello works inspired by the artwork began. Less than two months later, days before the pandemic lockdown, von Heyl had completed her Primavera 2020.
“The world has been fractured and on the brink long before the pandemic decimated the performing arts,” says Haimovitz. “The musical commissions of THE PRIMAVERA PROJECT celebrate our golden age of musical diversity and richness. Each new piece – like the blossoming flowers, figures, and symbols of Charline von Heyl’s and Sandro Botticelli’s Primaveras – has been a ray of light, offering us hope for renewal of the human spirit.”
Young says, “I felt a sense of kinship from the very first conversation with Matt and Charline. There was a generosity of ideas between the three of us, how together we could bring to life a world of music engaging the old and new Primavera paintings. Haimovitz and von Heyl are incredibly curious about the world beyond their studios. During our initial conversation together, I observed firsthand how true artists and performers constantly notice and intentionally incorporate old and new cultural references and sources of inspiration in their work.”
Matt Haimovitz, cello
is acclaimed for both his tremendous artistry and as a musical visionary – pushing the boundaries of classical music performance, championing new music and initiating groundbreaking collaborations, all while mentoring an award-winning studio of young cellists at McGill University’s Schulich School of Music in Montreal.
Mr. Haimovitz made his debut in 1984, at the age of 13, as a soloist with Zubin Mehta and the Israel Philharmonic, and at 17 he made his first recording for Deutsche Grammophon (Universal Classics) with James Levine and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Haimovitz made his Carnegie Hall debut when he substituted for his teacher, the legendary Leonard Rose, in Schubert’s String Quintet, alongside Isaac Stern, Mstislav Rostropovich, Pinchas Zukerman and Shlomo Mintz.
Haimovitz’s recording career encompasses more than 20 years of award-winning work on Deutche Grammophon and his own Oxingale Records. His recent release Meeting of the Spirits was nominated for a GRAMMY® for Best Classical Crossover Album and won a GRAMMY® for Best Producer of the Year (Classical). A new recording with pianist Christopher O’Riley, Shuffle.Play.Listen, celebrating the evolution of the listening experience since the iPod, has received unanimous acclaim. In fall 2012 Haimovitz will be featured as soloist in three world-premiere concerto recordings, Paul Moravec’s Montserrat, Laura Schwendinger’s Esprimere, and Philip Glass’ Cello Concerto No. 2 recorded live with the Cincinnati Symphony and Dennis Russell Davis.
The solo cello recital is a Haimovitz trademark, both inside and outside the concert hall. In 2000, he made waves with his Bach “Listening-Room” Tour, for which, to great acclaim, Haimovitz took Bach’s beloved cello suites out of the concert hall and into clubs. He was the first classical artist to play at New York’s infamous CBGB club, in a performance filmed by ABC News for “Nightline UpClose.”
Haimovitz’s honors include the Concert Music Award from ASCAP, the Trailblazer Award from the American Music Center, the Avery Fisher Career Grant, the Grand Prix du Disque, the Diapason d'Or, the Premio Internazionale "Accademia Musicale Chigiana". He was in the final studio of legendary cellist Leonard Rose at the Juilliard School and received a B.A. magna cum laude with highest honors from Harvard University. Haimovitz plays a Venetian cello, made in 1710 by Matteo Gofriller.
This album contains no booklet.