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Martin Berkofsky
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Saturday, 20 October 2007

It was still cold in Moscow, a late March day in 2004, only several days after Atakan Sari, the Globalis Symphony Orchestra, and I had premiered Alan Hovhaness' Two Piano Concerto in Tchaikovsky Hall.

We were sitting at our two pianos in the cavernous recording studio at Moscow's House of Sound; (everything in Russia is conceived as 'big-enormous-grand,") a historic venue where "USSR State Symphony Orchestra" was still to be seen stenciled on the instrument cases standing guard in the corridors; corridors inhabited by the spirits of the so many great Soviet-era artists who had opened their hearts to the waiting microphones.

Now it was our turn.  We were to record Alan Hovhaness' two-piano work "Mihr"-a tribute to the ancient Armenian God of Fire, an etherial and other-worldly prismatic panopticon honoured by Wiilliam Saroyan who suggested accompanying texts to Hovhaness.

It was demanding and exacting work as all worthy recording sessions must be.  Again and again, over and over; our veteran producer even leaving her sound-proofed booth to conduct through some moments of precision ensemble.

My mind briefly wandered through my pidgeon Russian: Mihr-Mihr-the work's title kept hovering above the American and Turkish pianists recording an Armenian work, being directed by a Russian producer-Mihr-Mihr...Mir...

 Mir.  Peace.  Of course.





Posted by cristoforifund at 11:47 AM EDT
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