Michael Hersch in the National Review

Since its release in 2007, The Vanishing Pavilions by composer and pianist Michael Hersch has been repeatedly hailed as an important major work by a remarkable young artist. This masterful work for solo piano continues to find a greater audience, and though it has been available for five years it regularly catches the ear of reviewers.

We have seen an uptick in sales of Hersch’s recordings over the past several weeks, particularly The Vanishing Pavilions. The National Review’s Jay Nordlinger has brought increased attention to Hersch and his works with a fantastic article and review on its website. With about a million hits a day, the National Review Online is a major source not only for political commentary but also for art and culture. Nordlinger was struck by The Vanishing Pavilions, which he describes as “apocalyptic, visionary, and staggering.” The review goes beyond the music to paint a picture of Hersch himself; the opening line boldly states that, “The story of Michael Hersch is one of the most amazing you’ll ever hear – in music or out.” Throughout, Hersch’s own voice is used to tell of his early life, coming to classical music ‘late’ at age eighteen, and his work as an artist. Hersch describes his problems with the performance and particularly premieres of his works. “The music is sort of safe in your mind. And then it’s out there, naked.”

Fittingly, a late quotation by Hersch could just as easily describe his own powerful compositions as well as the music he consumes. “The thing about music is,” he says, “you can go for years without listening to a given composer, and suddenly have a need to hear him. The music is lying dormant, waiting for you. you can activate it anytime, simply by engaging it.” We hope that Michael’s music will continue to grow in acclaim, and that it will be activated by more and more listeners who can engage with his tremendous works.

Click here to read Jay Nordlinger’s review of Michael Hersch in the National Review Online.

Click below to visit our catalogue pages on The Vanishing Pavillions and other compositions by Michael Hersch to read additional reviews, to see track listings and artists, and for purchasing information.

MC 101 – The Vanishing Pavilions

MC 104 – Sonatas Nos. 1 & 4 for Unaccompanied Cello

MC 105 – The Wreckage of Flowers