poster for Bagatelles Without TonalityMax Lifchitz: Bagatelles Without Tonality

The Music Program of the University at Albany’s Department of Music and Theatre is pleased to present faculty member Max Lifchitz in Bagatelles Without Tonality on Monday, February 4, 2019 at 7pm at the UAlbany Performing Arts Center on the uptown campus.

In addition to performing Franz Liszt’s Bagatelle Without Tonality, the pianist will play brief pieces by composers from the Americas inspired by Liszt’s prophetic masterpiece including works by Canadians Allan Crossman and Leslie Opatril; Argentinean Alicia Terzián; Brazilian Gilberto Mendes; Mexican Manuel Enríquez as well as Americans Ruth Crawford, Ssu-Yu Huang, Robert Martin, Joseph Rivers and William Toutant. The program will also introduce a new composition written for the occasion by Lifchitz.

Franz Liszt wrote the Bagatelle Without Tonality – a work he considered to be his Mephisto Waltz No. 4 – a year before his passing. Widely considered to be the first piece in the history of western music not to follow the principle of tonal gravity, Liszt’s enigmatic composition antedated the varied musical trends that emerged during the first half of the 20th century. The works by other composers on the program manifest a wide variety of approaches to the concepts Liszt explored in his prophetic composition. Crawford, Enríquez and Martin explore musical ideas that travel farther than the point where the romantic master adjourned. Others such as Terzián, Mendes, Opatril and Huang retain elements of traditional harmony while refashioning them in inventive and unexpected ways.

Active as pianist and composer, Max Lifchitz has appeared as soloist with among others, the Albany Symphony Orchestra, the Clifton Park Chamber Orchestra, México’s National Symphony Orchestra and the Neuchatel Orchestra in Switzerland. The San Francisco Chronicle described him as "a young composer of brilliant imagination and a stunning, ultra-sensitive pianist" while The New York Times praised commented on his "clean, measured and sensitive performances." A graduate of The Juilliard School and Harvard University, Mr. Lifchitz was invited to join the teaching staff of the University at Albany in 1986. He is the director of the New York City based North/South Chamber Orchestra now celebrating its 39th consecutive season. His numerous recordings are widely available through iTunes, Spotify, Amazon, YouTube and other commercial music streaming services.

This recital is made possible in part with public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts.

Advance tickets are $5 for the general public and $3 for students, seniors and UAlbany faculty-staff.  Tickets purchased on the day of the show are $10 for the general public and $5 for students, seniors and UAlbany faculty-staff.  For reservations and further information, contact the Box Office at (518) 442-3997.