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Dutch pianist Feico Deutekom publishes on Orange Mountain Music a personal selection of 14 of Philip Glass’s “Études for Piano”.

The Dutch pianist Feico Deutekom has recently published on the Orange Mountain Music label, Philip Glass: Études for Piano, his own selection of the twenty pieces composed by the American composer between 1991 and 2012, with the aim of training the abilities to play all kinds of dynamics – ranging from pianissississimo to fortissimo, passing through all its intermediate gradations: mezzo forte, mezzo piano, piano, crescendo, forte, sforzando, ritardando, pianissimo, diminuendo…- and technical skills – from legato to stacatto, passing through arpeggios, chords, triplets, chromatic scales, jazz rhythmic patterns or different techniques in each hand, ornaments such as trill, grupetto or mordente, etcetera, etcetera-.

Deutekom, as can be read on his website, is a regular guest at Philip Glass concerts in the Netherlands, where the Dutch pianist has performed music by Einstein on the Beach, Akhnaten, Music in Similar Motion, Hydrogen Jukebox or The Photographer, He has also played four hands with Philip Glass and appeared as a guest musician with the Philip Glass Ensemble in some of their live performances of the iconic film Koyaanisqatsi, in which Deutekom has also taken part as a singer.

In 2020, Deutekom published on Orange Mountain Music Philip Glass. Musical Offering, an album consisting of pieces that Philip Glass originally wrote for ensembles, of which Deutekom made his own arrangements for piano, including Façades, String Quartet No. 2 or parts of the opera Les Enfants Terribles.

On this occasion, Deutekom wanted to focus exclusively on Glass’s Études for Piano, but contrary to the usual practice, he has not recorded the complete set of twenty Études, but a very personal selection of fourteen of them, and he has not even recorded them in their numerical or chronological order. Asked about this on his Instagram account, Deutekom replied that this is, for him, “a very personal album.  I have played the Études for a long time, for years even before I recorded them. All music of Philip Glass is very close to me but the Études are perhaps closest. Several pianists have before me released this work and when it became my turn I decided I wanted to take a different approach. Instead of presenting all 20 Études in the original order I selected the ones that I love playing most and that have the most special meaning to me.  And putting them in a new order allowed me to develop a new arch where I could emphasize certain contrasts and connections. This has the added benefit that for listeners familiar with the work I was able to present a new narrative, creating a few surprises and making the album sound like a more fresh experience hopefully”.

Feico Deutekom will present this album live on 16 May at De Ruïnekerk (the ruined church), an old 16th century church in the Dutch town of Bergen, some 45 kilometers north of Amsterdam, which was restored in 1960 and where, in addition to Protestant church services, classical music concerts are often held.