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The People United Will Never Be Defeated
"Frederic Rzewski is a prominent composer of the American avant-garde. A student of Milton Babbitt and Walter Piston, Rzewski's works have a strong socio-historical background, inspired by his deep political conscience. One of his best-known works is the colossal set of piano variations on a Chilean protest song by Sergio Ortega, The People United will Never be Defeated. This fascinating set of 36 variations explores new pianistic techniques, new sonorities, use of extreme registers and improvisational elements (whistling of the performer, slamming the piano lid...) all of which present a huge challenge to the pianist. This recording is a classic, as pianist Ursula Oppens is the dedicatee of this work and the ideal interpreter, given her specialization in 20th Century piano music."