Complete Works for Piano Solo
Andreas Skouras, pianist on this recording: "Zimmermann was no genuine pianist, although his organ studies allow us to assume a certain affinity for keyboard instruments. The fact that the piano accompanied him at the beginning of his development for a good one-and-a-half decades allows us to draw certain parallels to Robert Schumann. Unlike the latter, however, Zimmermann's piano pieces were not intended for his own use as a concert artist. Rather, the piano served to provide him with a safe compositional harbour -- at a time when it was essential to find his own language in the chaos of the years prior to the outbreak of the Second World War until the late 1940s." In order to support himself financially, Zimmermann arranged entertainment and film music during the 1950s and composed contributions for school radio broadcasts. In 1956 he was elected president by the German Section of the ISCM, but gave that post up one year later. He was the first composer to receive a stipend of the Villa Massimo in Rome in 1957. Beginning in 1957 he led a composition class and the seminar for film and radio music at the Cologne Music Academy. The last years of his life were dedicated to work on the Requiem für einen jungen Dichter (Requiem for a Young Poet) which was given its premiere in 1969. Bernd Alois Zimmermann was honored with a number of prizes, including the Great Artists' Prize of North Rhine-Westphalia (1960) and the Artists' Prize of the City of Cologne (1966). In 1965 Zimmermann became a member of the Berlin Academy of the Arts. On August 10, 1970, he departed willingly from this life in Groß-Königsdorf near Cologne.