Karlheinz Essl

Kalimba

for toy piano and playback
2005



Playing With a Lot of Toys, but for a Serious Purpose (Allan Kozinn)
in: New York Times (29 Sep 2006)

(...) Apart from the Cage and her own endearingly quirky arrangement of Johann Strauss Jr.’s “Wiener Blut Waltz,” offered as a built-in encore, the works that Ms. Ettenauer played were composed for her. Some, like Karlheinz Essl’s “Kalimba” (2005), exploited the sparkling timbre of the toy piano by using the recorded sound of the instrument to thicken the counterpoint. (...)


UnCaged Toy Piano: Phyllis Chen (Bruce Lee Gallanter)
in: Downtown Music Gallery (2009)

(...) The pieces by Andrian Pertout and Karlheinz Essl are both for toy piano and CD, which add some surprising sounds to the toy piano's sound. (...) Essl's Kalimba featuring a hazy, echo effect to the piano making it even more harrowing as if time is slowing down and speeding up simultaneously. (...)


Concert Announcing Phyllis Chen (Peter Margasak)
in: Chicgao Reader (20 Feb 2009)

The tracks I’ve heard from a forthcoming CD of Phyllis Chen’s prove that the instrument’s principal limitation is that so few people treat it as respectfully as she does. In a 2005 Karlheinz Essl composition called Kalimba, which combines live performance with prerecorded toy piano played through a loudspeaker inside the instrument, it attains an otherworldly percussive resonance (...).


Celebrating Elliott Carter and Randy Hostetler (Karren LaLonde Alenier)
in: The Dressing - Poet Karren LaLonde Alenier, as the Dresser, addresses what's underneath the art (20 Dec 2008)

Kalimba (2005) by Karlheinz Essl, played by Jenny Lin on toy piano with CD playback. The Dresser was both fascinated and annoyed with this piece. It was hard to tell where all the sounds were coming from. At first the Dresser wondered if the pianist was playing accompaniment to a recording. Some of the exotic sounds seemed like those from a gamelan ensemble. In one passage, annoying ascending and descending scales seemed like a waterfall. In another passage, the sound produced was like a loudly ticking mantel clock.


Whatever Shall Be. Music for Toy Instruments and Electronics (Dirk Wieschollek)
in: Neue Zeitschrift für Musik, 02/2014 (Schott: Mainz 2014)

(...) In Kalimba (2005) ist die elektronische Ebene per Mini-Lautsprecher im Instrument selber versteckt, sodass Livespiel und «playback» scheinbar derselben Quelle entspringen. Chromatische und diatonische Skalen werden hier hypnotisch in- und übereinandergeblendet, beschleunigt, verlangsamt, verdichtet und ausgedünnt.



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Updated: 11 May 2014