Thursday, July 28, 2011

Virtuoso Performance Software Update: Max Levinson And Jerry Herman!

We're pleased to release two more collections from the popular Virtuoso Performance Software series in downloadable format! This amazing and intimate series is now available for Yamaha Disklavier E3 and DKC-850 models, as well as Clavinovas and Keyboards! This week's additions include classic works from Shubert and Bach as performed by the inimitable Max Levinson, as well as a collection of musical theatre giant Jerry Herman's best loved songs, performed by the man himself!

Max Levinson- Bach & Schubert
Max Levinson is an enormous pianist. His appearance is slender. His demeanor… soft spoken. His attitude… modest. But when he sits before a piano and lays his hands upon the keyboard he calmly dawns the air of a maestro. Max possesses an understanding of the music he performs and the instrument he plays upon that would be considered profound for an artist twice his age. He astounds people wherever he plays. Coaxing a piano to speak can only be the product of intelligent and sensitive artistry; of experience and understanding the poetry and passion the immortals were able to capture and convey in their music.

The Max Levinson- Bach & Schubert Collection contains mature works rife with the pathos of lifelong emotional experience, that were penned by two geniuses separated by a century. Bach was, by most accounts a pious family man who devoted much of his work to the Lutheran church and nobility. Schubert was a struggling bachelor whose legacy is his chamber music and vocal lieder which he presented in the salon soirees of the bourgeoisie. Though their lives were dramatically different it's obvious they encountered similar joys and sorrows in the pursuit of their dreams; similar victories and defeats.

We're fortunate both were graced with the notion to capture such through their talent. And that Max's talent can momentarily suspend us within their drama, reviving these two emotional musical diaries: One, a baroque engraving and the other, a romantic epic.

Max is one of the illustrious alumni of the Westwood Yamaha Music School who went on to study with the late Aube Tzerko (student of Schnabel) and with Bruce Sutherland, two local piano legends. From Los Angeles he moved to Boston where he received his undergraduate degree, cum laude, in English Literature from Harvard while studying with Patricia Zander at the New England Conservatory. He's performed with major orchestras, in major chamber music festivals, and in recitals covering the globe in addition to his master classes and duties on the faculties of the Boston Conservatory and Brown University.


Jerry Herman- On His Own
Jerry Herman is a legend. He is alive and well(at 80 years old) and still writing music and championing causes. Herman is the composer and lyricist of phenomenal hits like "Hello Dolly," "Mame," and "La Cage Aux Folles," and can proudly state that over the last 30 years not a single day has passed where one of his shows has not been in production somewhere in this world.

Jerry's had the kind of success and career people dream of. As a self-taught pianist/composer, Jerry burst upon Broadway in the early 1960's as its youngest creator of music and lyrics with the successful show "Milk and Honey." By 1969 he had three hit musicals running simultaneously on Broadway. He's collected a lifetime's worth of Tony Awards, Grammy Awards, Drama Desk Awards and Gold Records. He's been elected into the Songwriter's Hall of Fame, the Theater Hall of Fame and he recently was a recipient of a Kennedy Center Honors award. He's one of only two composer/lyricists to have had three musicals to run over 1,500 consecutive performances on Broadway.

Jerry doesn't just render his songs. He plays with theatricality and exuberance exposing the emotional aspects of his songs, understanding them like no other. With the Jerry Herman-On His Own collection, you can enjoy the music of a legend as if he were sitting in your home, personally performing for you.

The Virtuoso Performance Series is available for download exclusively from Yamaha MusicSoft. Watch for updates to this series in the coming weeks!

~Drew