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First Watch: Finding Stillness In The Heart Of The City

A meditation on quietude amidst unceasing movement, a thick-walled cell of solitary contentment in the churn of daily life: That's the premise of this new video featuring the gifted pianist Michael Mizrahi.

The music Mizrahi is playing is the first movement of Mark Dancigers' The Bright Motion. The piece lends its title to Mizrahi's new album, which the New York indie label New Amsterdam is releasing next month. Co-founded by composers Sarah Kirkland Snider, William Brittelle and Judd Greenstein — who is becoming something of New York's next big new music impresario, between the label and the Ecstatic Music Festival he founded and curates — New Amsterdam highlights the work of a tight and often brilliant circle of younger composers, several of whose works are featured on this album: Patrick Burke, Ryan Brown, John Mayrose, Dancigers, Brittelle and Greenstein. Much of the music on this album was written specifically for Mizrahi, and he plays with both tenderness and fierce beauty.

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