Montreal-born Jean-Michel Blais has been a celebrated figure in the post-classical piano world since the release of his critically acclaimed debut album II
in 2016. His compositions have earned him a Libera Award, two Polaris prize nominations, a #1 on the Billboard
Classical chart and a Time
magazine top 10 album of the year.
His new album, aubades
, marks the musician’s transition from pianist to composer, as he writes for an ensemble for the first time in his career. Musical ideas captured in over 600 recorded piano improvisations were transformed by Blais into 11 compositions performed by a 12-person ensemble. During the composition process, Blais collaborated with Alex Weston, former music assistant to Philip Glass. The musicians were recorded with close-up microphones, creating a richly intimate atmosphere that captures the human behind each instrument, from the mechanics of the woodwind keys to the snap of a double bass string.
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