A Bernstein Story Sebastian Manz & Sebastian Studnitzky
- Igor Stravinsky (1882 - 1971):
- 1I. Molto Tranquillo (Three Pieces for Clarinet Solo)01:48
- 2II. — (Three Pieces for Clarinet Solo)01:20
- 3III. — (Three Pieces for Clarinet Solo)01:14
- Leonard Bernstein (1918 - 1990):
- 4Clarinet Sonata: Grazioso (Arr. Manz & Studnitzky)06:20
- 5Clarinet Sonata: Andantino (Arr. Manz & Studnitzky)01:12
- 6Clarinet Sonata: Vivace e leggiero (Arr. Manz & Studnitzky)05:14
- 7Clarinet Sonata: Lento molto - più andante - Poco più lento (Arr. Manz & Studnitzky)03:50
- 8Melancolenny / Clarinet Sonata: più mosso - Tempo I (Arr. Manz & Studnitzky)07:50
- 9Chichester Choral (Arr. Manz & Studnitzky)06:00
- Steve Reich (b. 1936):
- 10I. Fast (New York Counterpoint for Clarinet & Tape)04:57
- 11II. Slow (New York Counterpoint for Clarinet & Tape)02:40
- 12III. Fast (New York Counterpoint for Clarinet & Tape)03:33
- Leonard Bernstein:
- 13I. Clubhouse Fanfare (Prelude, Loops & Riffs) (Arr. Manz & Studnitzky)02:21
- 14II. Rise Against the Walk (Preludes, Loops & Riffs) (Arr. Manz & Studnitzky)02:03
- 15III. Stravinsky - Morph (Prelude, Loops & Riffs) (Arr. Manz & Studnitzky)04:32
- 16IV. Jam Session (Prelude, Loops & Riffs) (Arr. Manz & Studnitzky)03:16
- Igor Stravinsky:
- 17Le cauchemar de Stravinski (Arr. Studnitzky)03:08
Info for A Bernstein Story
Sebastian Manz and Sebastian Studnitzky have embarked upon a unique project to mark the great Leonard Bernstein. "A Bernstein Story" is an album situated between jazz and classical that would no doubt have been very much to Lenny’s taste.
How do you approach the great Leonard Bernstein in a way that illuminates every facet of his career? It is hardly possible to approach Bernstein, the conductor, the composer, the pianist, the intellectual, the teacher and the voice of warning, without stopping dead in your tracks out of pure reverence. Sebastian Manz and Sebastian Studnitzky decided to take on the challenge all the same, and in fact, to come at it from a quite different angle.
On the face of it, Manz and Studnitzky originate from two very different worlds: Hanover meets the Black Forest, clarinet confronts piano and trumpet, classical instrumentalist meets jazz-oriented crossover artist. Yet they have far more in common than just a first name: both ECHO prizewinners have achieved a significant reputation in their field of expertise. Most recently, Sebastian Manz won acclaim for his recording of all of Weber’s works for clarinet, and, according to German music critic Norbert Hornig, "he distinguishes himself as a consummate master of his instrument". With his album "Ky Organic", Sebastian Studnitzky pushed the boundaries of jazz music; he initiated the XJAZZ Festival Berlin and has toured worldwide.
The two musicians have come to Bernstein in their own individual ways and from their respective fields: Manz as the classically trained artist, Studnitzky as a jazz man. The album they have produced, A Bernstein Story, is meant to mirror the composer himself: remote from any formal categorization, pluralistic in style, eclectically colourful, located somewhere between classical and jazz.
They both knew from the outset that the project was going to be something special. "Audacious – it had to be. But the way we constructed it is, I think, unique," explains Manz. Bernstein’s Clarinet Sonata forms the basis of the album. "With the material Bernstein creates in four or five bars we jazz musicians can make music for half an hour." So it was Studnitzky’s task to unscramble the whole thing. Additionally, the two musicians used elements from the Prelude, Fugue and Riffs taken from Bernstein’s works for big band in which he gave the clarinet a solo part. Igor Stravinsky’s influence on Bernstein and Steve Reich’s pioneering work in musical minimalism shed further light on the maestro.
Their musical approach is not the only thing that turns out to be unconventional. Manz and Studnitzky played together for the first time in the legendary Systems Two Studio in Brooklyn, New York – on the day of the recording. Something which would be inconceivable in a traditional setting for recording an album produces a huge impression of spontaneity and love of experimentation, and at the same time assured the necessary flexibility for such a project. "The idea really grabbed me, taking a leap of faith. No playing safe! Taking a gamble by just booking the studio and a flight to New York," says Studnitzky.
The result of this special project is an album that not only features Bernstein; it is about him. This is music pervaded by so many different influences, modern and yet rooted in tradition, assiduous and extremely cool.
Sebastian Manz, clarinet, bass clarinet
Sebastian Studnitzky, piano, live-elektronics
Manz delights the media as a musician “who bowls melodies and notes along in front of him with such agility in their colour and nuances, it is as if they were balls he was expertly juggling …” (SZ). His “overwhelming passion for music making [is combined] with technical perfection” (WAZ) – and the RHEINISCHE POST writes of his CD “In Rhythm: “… it swings and stimulates, refreshes and weeps, and you just cannot get enough of it …”.
His big breakthrough came with his sensational success at the ARD International Music Competition in Munich in September 2008, where he won not only first prize in the Clarinet category, which had not been awarded for forty years, but also the coveted Audience Prize and other special prizes. In the “Duo Riul” with his partner Martin Klett at the piano, he had also won the German Music Competition just a few months previously. Sebastian Manz has since then been one of the most popular soloists and chamber musicians of the younger generation. Two ECHO Klassik awards have confirmed Sebastian Manz as one of the most sought-after soloists and chamber musicians of his generation. He has been solo clarinettist with the SWR Radio Symphony Orchestra in Stuttgart since 2010.
Sebastian Manz has so far performed as soloist at the Rheingau Music Festival and the Weilburg Schloss Concerts, with the SWR Radio Symphony Orchestra of Stuttgart, with the Dresden Philharmonic, at the Konzerthaus in Vienna and with the Bern Symphony Orchestra; he has been on tour with the Württemberg Chamber Orchestra of Heilbronn and the Dogma Chamber Orchestra, under conductors like Herbert Blomstedt, Sir Roger Norrington, Mario Venzago, Cornelius Meister, Eric Solen, Antonio Mendez, John Axelrod, Eugen Tzigane and Ruben Gazarian. In the field of chamber music he has been much in demand as a guest performer at the Beethoven Festival in Bonn, the Mozart Festival in Würzburg, the Heidelberg Spring Music Festival, at the “Spannungen” Festival in the converted power station in Heimbach, at the Festspielhaus Baden-Baden, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam and at the Mozarteum in Salzburg. His musical partners include Herbert Schuch, Veronika Eberle, Daniela Koch, Ramón Ortega Quero, the Danish String Quartet, the Dover Quartet and the Lotus String Quartet. He was engaged for three years by the Konzerthaus in Dortmund as part of the “Junge Wilde” series, which he brought to a conclusion with a spectacular concert in December 2014.
In the 2015/2016 season Sebastian Manz will undertake a number of international guest tours to Japan, Brazil and Portugal and will be Artist in Residence with the Philharmonie Baden-Baden. He will also make his debut with the Hamburg Symphony and has again accepted an invitation from the Bergische Symphoniker ensemble, to play for the first time ever Magnus Lindberg’s Clarinet Concerto, which has been hitherto considered unplayable. With his piano partner Martin Klett he will give recitals at a number of venues including Salzburg, Stuttgart and Kiel.
His discography now boasts 9 CDs, all of which impressively document his versatility and talent on the instrument and are impressive for their interesting choice of works comprising both standard repertoire and rarely heard works. His most recent recording with the Danish String Quartet compares the clarinet quintets of Robert Fuchs and Johannes Brahms.
Being the grandson of the Russian violinist Boris Goldstein and the son of two pianists, Manz's musical roots are in his German-Russian family background. He was born in Hanover in 1986 and began singing in a boys' choir at the age of six. He first learned the piano, which he plays very well, but soon concentrated on the clarinet after listening to Benny Goodman's recording of Carl Maria von Weber's E flat major Concerto, which fascinated him and awoke a longing for the instrument. Among his most important teachers and supporters were the acclaimed clarinettists Sabine Meyer and Rainer Wehle.
Alongside his concert work, Sebastian Manz has been active for some time in the “Rhapsody in School” organization founded by Lars Vogt, which is committed to bringing classical music into schools.
This album contains no booklet.