Music of Robert Xavier Rodriguez - Jeff Lankov, Piano

Jeff Lankov Robert Xavier Rodriguez

Friday, October 11, 2013, 8:00 p.m.
Venue: Jonsson Performance Hall
Admission: $15
Season: 2013-14

A repeat of an October 6 program at Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall featuring Rodríguez’ Semi-Suite, for piano four-hands with Rodríguez, Estampie, Fantasia Lussuriosa, Hot Buttered Rumba, Seven Deadly Sequences and the world premiere of Caprichos. Pianist Jeff Lankov received his Ph.D. from New York University, where he served on the piano faculty. He also studied with Rodríguez and for twelve years was pianist and assistant director of the UT Dallas Musica Nova ensemble.


Robert Xavier Rodríguez is “one of the major American composers of his generation” (Texas Monthly).  His music has been described as “Romantically dramatic” (Washington Post), “richly lyrical” (Musical America) and “glowing with a physical animation and delicate balance of moods that combine seductively with his all-encompassing sense of humor” (Los Angeles Times).  “Its originality lies in the telling personality it reveals.  His music always speaks, and speaks in the composer’s personal language.” (American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters).


Rodríguez received his musical training in San Antonio (b. 1946), Austin (UT), Los Angeles (USC), Lenox (Tanglewood), Fontainebleau (Conservatoire Américain) and Paris.  His teachers have included Nadia Boulanger, Jacob Druckman, Bruno Maderna and Elliott Carter.  Rodríguez first gained international recognition in 1971, when he was awarded the Prix de Composition Musicale Prince Pierre de Monaco by Prince Rainier and Princess Grace at the Palais Princier in Monte CarloOther honors include the Prix Lili Boulanger, a Guggenheim Fellowship, awards from ASCAP, five NEA grants and the Goddard Lieberson Award from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters.  Rodríguez has served as Composer-in-Residence with the San Antonio Symphony and the Dallas Symphony.  He is currently University Professor at The University of Texas at Dallas, where holds an Endowed Chair in Art and Aesthetic Studies and is Director of the Musica Nova ensemble.  He is active as a guest lecturer and conductor.


Rodriguez's works have been performed by conductors such as Sir Neville Marriner, Antal Dorati, Eduardo Mata, James DePriest, Sir Raymond Leppard, Keith Lockhart and Leonard Slatkin and by such organizations as the New York City Opera, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Dallas Opera, Houston Grand Opera, Vienna Schauspielhaus, Israel Philharmonic, Mexico City Philharmonic, Cleveland Orchestra and the Seattle, Houston, Dallas, Pittsburgh, Indianapolis, Baltimore, St. Louis, National, Boston and Chicago Symphonies.  His music is published exclusively by G. Schirmer, and seventeen CDs of his music have been recorded on the Newport, Crystal, Orion, Gasparo, Pro Arte, ACA, Urtext, CRI (Grammy nomination), First Edition, Schott, Naxos and Albany labels.



Pianist Jeff Lankov has been described as “alternately ferocious and sensitive” (The New York Times), “a fearless musician” (Dallas Morning News), “a master of concert programming” (Ft. Worth Star-Telegram) and “a pianist of great passion and verve” (Portland Tribune). His solo programs regularly feature works by living composers, often in unusual juxtapositions that explore the synthesis of popular and classical forms. His multimedia programs combine music with theatrical elements, visual art and computer-generated sounds and images. Recent concerts have included the piano works of John Adams, Blind Tom, John Cage, Michael Finnissy, George Gershwin, Scott Joplin and Astor Piazzolla, along with music for toy piano and prepared piano and Lankov’s own solo-piano transcriptions of Stravinsky's Le Sacre du Printemps and The Firebird. This season’s performances will include the complete piano works of John Adams and avant-garde arrangements of compositions by Gershwin, The Beatles and Radiohead.


Lankov received his Ph.D. in Piano Performance from New York University, where he served on the piano faculty. He also studied with Robert Xavier Rodríguez and for twelve years was Pianist and Assistant Director of the Musica Nova ensemble at the University of Texas. As a solo recitalist, concerto soloist and collaborative pianist, Jeff Lankov has performed in such diverse venues as Carnegie Hall, New York Symphony Space, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Radio City Music Hall, Texas Stadium and Broadway theatres. Lankov has recorded piano works by Gershwin, Piazzolla, Finnissy and Messiaen.  He will record this program of Rodríguez’ piano music for Albany Records.


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