Commissioned by the Ruhr International Piano Festival
First Performance: 2007, Essen Festival, Germany - Robert Levin
Bernard Rands's Twelve Preludes for solo piano is an impressive, emotionally draining work.....a sense of music history and lyricism pervade the Preludes. The score conjures a sound world that Debussy would have recognized. At the same time, the melancholy cast of many of Rands' pieces was Rands' own.
Los Angeles Times
Five of the "Twelve Preludes" (2007) by Puitzer Prize winning composer confirmed that admirable, and immaculate music is still being produced...
The Washington Post
A set of six preludes by Bernard Rands all drew on similar textural constructions and motivic material, and in that sense could be mistaken for theme and variations. The first prelude, Durezza, laid out the basic premise for the whole set: strong and stately middle-registered themes answered in ever-expanding chords above and below like a brightening halo. The fourth prelude, Notturno, dedicated to composer Donald Martino, was my favorite. Here, a simple theme built on repeated notes was surrounded by widely spaced high and low sonorities that seemed to define a sonic space of cosmic dimensions and beauty. Cheng imbued this seemingly static sound world with undercurrents of bittersweet drama.
The Boston Musical Intelligencer
Nov. 09, 2014