Elliott Carter: Caténaires

The New York Times called it “an insistent, rich-textured, unabashedly virtuosic roller coaster of a piece” in the review of the surprise premier given by Pierre-Laurent Aimard in 2006.

A caténaire is a chain that delivers electric current to a train. Mr. Carter’s work is, as one might expect, an unrelenting chain of 16th notes, and, if played well, quite electric. The pianist must traverse the length o the keyboard with incredible grace to stay in control of this moto perpetuo.

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