Sergio Cervetti came to the U.S. from his native Uruguay in 1962 and studied composition with Ernst Krenek at Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore. In 1966 he won the chamber music prize at the Caracas, Venezuela Music Festival and after graduation was invited by the DAAD to be composer-in-residence in Berlin, Germany. From 1972-1997 and 2007-08 Cervetti was Master Teacher of Music at Tisch School of the Arts at New York University. He has composed nearly 150 works for the concert stage, dance, theater and film, many of them recorded and performed in venues and festivals in the U.S. and abroad including BAM’s Next Wave Festivals, New York City Opera/VOX and the film Natural Born Killers. Cervetti’s music encompasses acoustic and electroacoustic works that blend folk elements, European tradition and minimalist aesthetics. A traditionalist and innovator, his works are a post-modern synthesis of techniques from diverse periods and often reflect his South American heritage. His music can be heard on Navona CD’s NAZCA, Keyboard3, WIND DEVIL & CO. and UNBRIDLED. www.sergiocervetti.com
(by the composer himself)
When one of my piano students asked me which was the most difficult piece
ever written for the piano I immediately responded that it was probably Mazeppa,
one of Liszt’s Transcendental Etudes. When he asked me to play it I of course
declined and told him to look it up on YouTube since I was sure that some intrepid
pianist would have posted it there. After my student left I quickly went to YouTube
and found this incredible pianist, Nicolas Horvath, playing Mazeppa like the gods!
Those turbulent hand-crossed thirds and octaves where dispatched with such an
assurance and panache I was quite overwhelmed and why not… a little envious. As
a pianist in my teens I had a very hard time trying to play some of the
Transcendental Etudes but never passed beyond the first.
So I had to write to congratulate him and to express my sincerest admiration.
He answered me back immediately and we have been in contact ever since. When he
asked me to write a short piece for his marathon concert at the Palais de Tokyo I
jumped at the occasion. The Intergalactic Tango is a humble homage to his
musicality and technical skills, and is of course dedicated to him.