Already engaged with the cross-pollination between classical and electronic music, Mexican artist Fernando Corona -AKA Murcof- of Nortec Collectiv fame meets French classical pianist Vanessa Wagner to reinterpret nine chapters of twentieth century music, stradling classic high-brow avant-garde, minimalism and electronica. With an ambience that’s part cinematic and part piano, the repertoire of this live performance includes compositions by John Cage, Gyorgy Ligeti, Morton Feldman, Philip Glass, Aphex Twin, Erik Satie, all the way to an Arvo Pärt so transformed as to assume a post-rock flavour.
Murcof – Fernando Corona makes sparse, minimal electronica. Many of his compositions are built around abstract, glitchy, and sometimes complex electronic percussion. Harmonic and melodic influences come from classical music, ambient music, drone music, Berlin school synthesizer music, ethnic music and free improvisation. Rhythms are derived from minimal techno, dub, glitch, industrial music and IDM – often aligned around a 4/4 beat. More recent works from Murcof haven’t actually included electronic beats. In his earlier material, like the 2001 EP Monotonu, Murcof featured orchestral instruments sampled from recordings of works by modern composers (Arvo Pärt, Morton Feldman…) and later incorporated samples of his own and friends own recordings performing classical instruments. His four albums for Leaf Label (Martes, Utopia, Remenbrenza and Cosmos) released between 2002 and 2007 belong to some of the most acclaimed records of the experimental and ambient repertoire. Besides his own personally initiated albums, Corona worked on the 2008 commission project The Versailles Sessions, in which he reinterpreted recordings of a baroque ensemble. Murcof’s live shows have featured guest musicians from varied musical backgrounds, such as jazz trumpet player Erik Truffaz, tabla player Talvin Singh, crossover electronica-classical pianist Francesco Tristano and contemporary composer Philippe Petit. In 2009, InFiné re-issued his soundtrack of La Sangre Illuminada to critical acclaim.
Vanessa Wagner – Guided by her natural curiosity, pianist Vanessa Wagner likes to travel through the vast repertoire of her instrument, from works written for the fortepiano (which she plays) to contemporary compositions of our time, notably those of Pascal Dusapin, who has dedicated several pieces to her as his favourite pianist. An eclectic and curious musician, she also likes to be involved in more original projects: she plays programmes mixing ancient and modern pianos. With her sensitive and intelligent playing, her discreet personality and her eclectic and politically committed artistic choices she is a remarkable musician. In 1999 she received a “Victoire de la Musique“(French equivalent of the Grammy Awards) as the most promising young instrumental soloist. Her recordings of Rameau, Mozart, Haydn, Schumann, Brahms, Rachmaninov, Debussy, Schubert and Berio have received excellent reviews and numerous awards in France and abroad. Vanessa Wagner has been awarded “des Arts et des Lettres” and has also been Artistic Director of the “Festival du Château de Chambord” since 2010.