"Elephant" and "Isabella" are from the forthcoming full-length release "Elephant". Circus composer Peter Bufano penned and performed these instrumentals inspired by works of art in the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. The debut performance was on February 18, 2010 in the tapestry room of the museum in Boston, MA.
"Elephant" took the form of a samba and is inspired by a Korean granite statue of an elephant which was used as an incense burner; an obvious choice for a circus musician. "Isabella" is based on the Zorn painting "Isabella Stewart Gardner in Venice" which depicts Mrs. Gardner poised on the balcony in a state of immanent movement. Bufano's take: a waltz; haunting and moving.
This recording is simple, pure and unadorned. In a world of "more is more" production this performance stands apart. The accordion is complete, it accompanies itself. And Bufano doesn't rush through the pieces; the space between the notes is where one feels what he's playing.
The performance captured here took place in a simple open space with high ceilings and wooden floors. This allowed each phrase to radiate and evaporate transparently. One actually hears the breath of the bellows and the click of the buttons from Bufano's custom made Italian accordion.
"A tightrope act, if you will, between profane circus music and sacred high art." - Jed Gottlieb - The Boston Herald