Collected Works IV: The Piano Sonatas / Sonatele pentru pian (first print)
Nicolae Coman – The Piano Sonatas
(n. Bucureşti, 23 februarie 1936 – d. București, 27 octombrie 2016)
Nicolae Coman was born in 1936 in Bucharest. During his high-school years he began studying music privately with the renowned Romanian teachers: composer Mihail Jora and pianist Florica Musicescu. He took classes at the “Ciprian Porumbescu” Conservatory in Bucharest with Mihail Jora and Leon Klepper (composition), Paul Constantinescu (harmony), Zeno Vancea and Miriam Marbé (counterpoint), Tudor Ciortea (form analysis), Victor Iusceanu (music theory), George Breazul (music history), Alfred Mendelsohn (orchestration), Emilia Comişel and Mariana Cahane (folk music), Ovidiu Drimba and Eugenia Ionescu (piano) and Mansi Barberis (canto).
After his graduation he worked at the Romanian Radio Broadcasting Company, but was not allowed to promote to an employee position due to political reasons, having to do with the clash between Coman’s family history and the socialist regime. Regardless of this he was permitted to collaborate with the national radio for many decades, for broadcasts and interviews. He worked as a researcher at the Folk Music Institute within the Romanian Academy, from 1959 – 1963. It was during this time that he travelled to villages in Pădureni (Hunedoara) to gather folk songs. Writing them down and analysing them led to his essay about the Romanian folk music in that region, Jocuri din ţinutul Pădureni. In 1963 he started teaching harmony (assisting Ion Dumitrescu’s class) and counterpoint at the Bucharest Conservatory. He held a professorship from 1992 until the end of his life, for the last 2 decades teaching composition as well.
He composed the cantata Izvoarele păcii (Wellspring of peace, 1959) for chamber orchestra, mezzosoprano, tenor, mixed choir and children choir on the lyrics by Nina Cassian. He wrote a Concerto for piano and orchestra (1959, rev. 1984). His chamber music works include over 100 pieces for piano, two piano sonatas (1956, 1969), one sonata for violin and piano (1957), Rezonanțe mioritice (Shepard resonances) pentru vioară și pian (1980), Monodie (Monody) for cello solo (1984). He wrote over 100 works for voice and piano on the lyrics of Mihai Eminescu, Tudor Arghezi, George Bacovia, Ion Pillat, Mariana Dumitrescu, Emil Botta, Sapho, Michelangelo Buonarroti, Johann Wolfgang Goethe, Emily Dickinson, Carl Sandburg, Ogdon Nash, Josef Attila, Guilaume Appolinaire, Ioanna Tsatsos, Ghiorghios Seferis, Rainer Maria Rilke, Eugenio Montale, Giuseppe Ungaretti. The songs composed on his own poems include Vârsta de bronz (Bronze years), a cycle of 7 songs for baritone and string quartet (1958). For teaching purposes, he wrote over 4000 harmonic exercises, in tonal, modal and modern fashion. Nicolae Coman was awarded with the Romanian Union of Composers and Musicologists Prize in 1969, 1977 and 2009. …
Read full preface / German version not available > HERE