For Immediate Release
By And Cy, A Unique Collaboration
Byron Janis and Cy Coleman Release Performance Of Variations On A Theme Of Paganini
June 26, 2012 New York, NY Byron Janis and Cy Coleman met when they were both 18 years old and began a lifelong friendship. One day, when they were improvising on two pianos, Byron began playing the famous Theme of that incomparable violinist Paganini on which so many great classical composers such as Brahms, Rachmaninoff and Liszt had written variations. Cy said, Hey By, why dont we write our own set of variations on that Theme? What a great idea, said Byron. Variations on a Theme of Paganini was recorded live in New York City in 1978.
When Byron Janis, spoken of as one of the greatest pianists of the 20th century, and Cy Coleman, regarded as one of the greatest writers of hit musicals on Broadway, as well as renowned pianist, played together on two pianos, you can expect to have an unusual experience. Indeed, on this CD, you will hear a set of variations on that famous Theme written in a unique classical/jazz style, both highly original and excitingly virtuosic. By and Cy played their variations on each others birthdays as well as at some special happenings and always brought the house down. This performance was privately recorded at one of those happenings.
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About Byron Janis
Byron Janis is one of the world's greatest concert pianists. The first pianist to study with the great Vladimir Horowitz, Janis made his orchestral debut with Toscaninis NBC Symphony Orchestra at age 15. He began his career as a concert pianist in 1944. In 1960, the United States Department of State chose him to open the first cultural exchange between the United States and the Soviet Union. At that time, The New York Times reported that if music could replace international politics, Byron Janis could consider himself an ambassador breaking down cold war barriers. Mr. Janis was invited back by the Soviet Union in 1962, where he had a triumphant seven-week tour. In 1978, he created an acclaimed program on the life of Frederic Chopin, which aired twice, nationally on PBS stations in the United States and in countries around the world. Mr. Janis has had the great honor of being written into the Congressional Record of both the Senate and the House of Representatives, honoring him as a musician, a diplomat and an inspiration.
He has written an autobiography, Chopin and Beyond: My Extraordinary Life in Music and the Paranormal. A companion DVD, which features conductor Lorin Maazel and pianist Emanuel Ax, entitled The Byron Janis Story, directed by Peter Rosen, also chronicles his life and is currently airing across the United States on PBS. Mr. Janis also released The Chopin Collection in 2012 on EMI Classics, and is scheduled to release Live From Leningrad in July 2012.
About Cy Coleman
Cy Coleman was a Tony Award-winning Broadway composer who rose from child classical pianist to jazz player to master of the catchy show tune. Mr. Coleman, a native New Yorker, was born Seymour Kaufman. He played classical music at Carnegie Hall and Town Hall as a child, but as an adult heard the siren call of jazz, pop and theatre music. In the late 1950s and '60s, he penned such hits as "Witchcraft," "The Best Is Yet to Come," "You Fascinate Me So" and "When in Rome." Among Broadway musicals composed by Mr. Coleman are Little Me, On the Twentieth Century, City of Angels, Barnum, The Will Rogers Follies, I Love My Wife and The Life. Mr. Coleman passed away at the age of 75 in November 2004.
For Byron Janis: For press information and to schedule interviews, limited public appearances and engagements for Maestro Janis, please contact Bettina Klinger at KlingerVision, Inc. at 212-592-1385 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
NOTE: For press information and to schedule interviews, limited public appearances and engagements, please contact Bettina L. Klinger, President, KlingerVision, (212) 592-1385 or email email@example.com