VIKTOR ULLMANN (1898-1944): Menuett (Totentanz), Complete Piano Sonatas - No. 1, Op. 10, No. 2, Op. 19, No. 3, Op. 26, No. 4, Op. 38, No. 5, Op. 45, No. 6, Op. 49 and No. 7.
Catalogue Number: 09O054
Label: Steinway & Sons
Description: This is the third complete cycle of the Ullmann sonatas and the first one in 17 years (also the first one to use the 2001 Schott-published edition; the previous two had to use manuscripts) and, even better, it's mid-price. Remarkably, the fact that the last three sonatas were composed in the concentration camp of Terezin does not show at all: this is very much a cycle with each sonata plainly deriving from the ones before it. The idiom is central European/Viennese, of course, with a few hints of Schoenbergian atonality in the earlier sonatas (No. 1 is from 1936) but also Mahler, jazz, Czech folk music and Bartók (much of the Fourth recalls his Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta) while the Seventh - later orchestrated from Ullmann's instrumental notations on his manuscript - juxtaposes Yiddish folk music, a Hussite patriotic song and a Lutheran chorale. 2 CDs. Jeanne Golan (piano).