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Schiele and the 2nd Viennese School

This program connects the life and music of Schoenberg, Berg and Webern with the art of the Fin de Siecle Vienna – specifically Egon Schiele. Tracing connections between the artist’s style and Schoenberg’s Emancipation of the Dissonance and the evolution of his music and the music of his disciples, the performance features such stirring music as Schoenberg’s opus 11, Berg’s opus 1, Webern’s Variations for piano, and Zemlinksy’s Fantasien über Gedichte von Richard Dehmel Op. 9. This music still retains the ability to shock and surprise, retaining its avant garde status after almost 100 years – as do the jagged, erotic and disturbing paintings of Schiele.


SIROTA by Lev ‘Ljova’ Zhurbin Recorded live at WFMT

Inna recently recorded SIROTA for solo piano and historical recording by Lev ‘Ljova’ Zhurbin, live at the studios of WFMT in Chicago, April 4 2011. The work was commissioned by Inna Faliks and the Spertus Institute of Jewish Studies; and dedicated to Inna Faliks & Gershon Sirota.

SIROTA (the title means “Orphan” in Russian, which could be coincidental) is a composition for solo piano that incorporates a recording made by cantor Gershon Sirota in Warsaw in 1908. Often referred to as “The Jewish Caruso”, Gershon Sirota was born in the Ukraine, and served as cantor in Odessa, Vilnius, and in Warsaw, where he perished in the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising.

The piece features a fragmented melody line that is driven by a relentless limping pattern comprised of a falling and rising D-minor chord. After the climax, the pianist’s role becomes that of an accompanist at a synagogue, where Sirota is chanting prayers for Rosh Hashannah (the Jewish New Year).

The World Premiere was performed by Inna Faliks at the Highland Park Community House in Highland Park, IL, on February 27, 2011


Upcoming Spring Performances

Happy Spring! Welcome to my new web site. Please check it out for upcoming performances, projects, music, recordings, etc.

Below are some upcoming concerts, starting with this Monday night at 8 pm Central Time, 98.7 fm WFMT radio in Chicago, or www.wfmt.com to hear me play on Mondays Live! Music will include Schubert, Beethoven and Ljova’s beautiful Sirota for piano and recorded chorus, recently composed for me.

In other live radio upcoming events – Music/Words, my poetry music series, is live on WFMT this month! Tune in to hear great music alongside accomplished and brilliant poets reading from their work. More i

April 13, 3 pm – Schostakovich Quintet with New Millenium Orchestra members, Inna Faliks and Jasmine Lin + Jesse Ball, poet

April 20, 3 pm – Matt Hagle, music of Brahms, Chopin and Debussy, + Regan Good, poet

April 27, 3 pm – Inna Faliks, music of Gubaidulina, Liszt and Chopin, + Sandra Beasley poet

On April 29th, hear fantastic Boston violinist Sharan Leventhal and myself at the Cornelia Street Cafe NYC, corneliastreetcafe.com, joined by award winning poets Susan Miller and LB Thompson

Finally, May 1st bring the Chicago premiere of Music/Words to Pianoforte Chicago – with Mark Levine, poet extraordinaire, and myself at the piano.

More exciting things are to come in the summer, featuring a Bargemusic recital on June 30th with the NYC premiere of Ljova’s Sirota. Stay tuned, and happy spring and summer!

Next Music/Words – April 29 at Cornelia Street Café

On Friday April 29th, 2011, at New York City’s Cornelia Street Café, Music/Words will feature Inna Faliks, piano, Sharan Leventhal, violin; and Susan Miller and LB Thompson, poets. The varied program will include Schubert’s Sonata in a minor opus 143, Concert Piece (1959) by Seymour Shifrin (1926-1979), and Ravel’s Sonata for violin and piano. Cornelia Street Café is located at 29 Cornelia Street, Greenwich Village, NYC. Tickets are $20 and are available by calling 212-989-9319.

Since winning the Kranischsteiner Musikpreis at the 1984 International Contemporary Music Festival in Darmstadt, Germany, violinist Sharan Leventhal has built an international reputation as a champion of contemporary music. Her more than 100 premieres include works written by Gunther Schuller, Virgil Thomson, William Kraft, Pauline Oliveros, Tania León, and Simon Bainbridge.

LB Thompson’s poetry chapbook Tendered Notes: Poems of Love and Money won the Center for Book Arts’ annual chapbook competition in 2003. Her poems have appeared in Fence, Pool, Lyric, The Women’s Review of Books and The New Yorker. She received her B.A. from Sarah Lawrence College and her M.F.A. in Poetry from New York University and was a recipient of a Rona Jaffe Foundation Writer’s Award. Her essay about her long period of illness, “Torpor: Metaphors of Hibernation,” appeared in Prairie Schooner in 2009. Ms. Thompson teaches English to college freshmen, works as a free-lance copyeditor and lives on the North Fork of Long Island. She recently completed a poetry manuscript entitled The Dark Skirt of the Universe, and is at work on a novel and a collection of essays.

Susan L. Miller has published poetry in Iowa Review, Black Warrior Review, Calyx, Commonweal, Meridian, and Sewanee Theological Review, and has poems forthcoming in the anthology Collective Brightness: LGBTIQ Poets on Faith, Religion, and Spirituality. She has twice won a Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Prize for poetry. She teaches Poetry and Expository Writing as a Russell Teaching Fellow at Rutgers University, where she also helps coordinate and curate an LGBT reading series and a reading series of religious writing. She lives with her husband in Brooklyn.

Called “A delight to hear” and “riveting” by Phil Greenfield of the Baltimore Sun, Inna Faliks (www.innaonline.com) played her debut with the Chicago Symphony at age 15, and performs regularly at major venues in US and abroad. A winner of many international competitions including the 2005 International Pro Musicis Award , Ms. Faliks has recently performed at Carnegie Hall, Paris’s Salle Cortot, Metropolitan Museum, Bargemusic a recital tour of Russia, and in multiple TV and radio broadcasts worldwide. Her CD, Sound of Verse, has been enthusiastically reviewed this year by Gramophone, American Record Guide and other press. Recent festival appearances include Verbier, Taos, and Brevard. She performed the NY and LA premieres of 13 Ways of Looking at the Goldberg – variations by contemporary composers on Bach’s Aria. Her former teachers include Gil Kalish, Leon Fleisher and Boris Petrushansky.


Music/Words is an interdisciplinary live performance series exploring connections between poetry and music by presenting collaborations between exciting solo musicians and acclaimed contemporary poets in the form of a live recital/reading.

Inna Faliks created the series in order to foster a chance for poets and musicians to work together and inspire each other, as well as to allow different audiences to come together for these musical-literary events. New published and unpublished works are read alongside performances of music old and new and connected by content, intuition, and inspiration. According to Faliks, “I pair performers together based on their personalities and styles, and encourage them to pair the poems with music in ways that are strongly and intuitively connected.”

Music/Words has featured collaborations between acclaimed poets such as Jesse Ball, Deborah Landau and Mark Levine, and musicians such as cellist Wendy Warner and pianists Leon Livshin and Angelina Gadeliya. Performances have occurred in some of NY’s most beloved performance spaces, such as Le Poisson Rouge and Cornelia Street Café. WFMT Radio in Chicago features Music/Words in regular live broadcasts throughout the month of April each year. There are four concerts each season, in a variety of venues. This season, each concert of Music/Words this season represents a different element – fire, earth, water, or air. Visit www.musicwordsnyc.com for more information.

Three Jewish Composers- Three Centuries

“Three Jewish Composers- Three Centuries,” a program pianist Inna Faliks has presented twice at Chicago’s Spertus Institute for Jewish Studies, has featured the North American premiere of Ilya Levinson’s Shtetle Suite and, most recently, the world premiere of Sirota for piano and recorded sound, written for Inna Faliks by one of New York’s most popular composers, Ljova Zhurbin.

Past programs have included the following pairings:

>> 19th century composer Fanny Mendelssohn, 20th century master George Gershwin, and acclaimed contemporary composer Lev “Ljova” Zhurbin.

>> Felix Mendelssohn, Arnold Schoenberg, and Ilya Levinson (Shtetle Suite).

Boris Pasternak: Complete Piano Music

This performance and discussion of the great poet’s short-lived yet intense career as a pianist and composer details his relationship with Scriabin and his life long passion for the music of Chopin. Music of Pasternak (preludes and Piano Sonata) is performed alongside Chopin’s works. In addition to discussion, poems that refer to Chopin and his art are read in the pianist’s own translation.

13 Ways of Looking at the Goldberg, variations on Bach’s Aria

Inna Faliks was the first pianist to premiere this exciting cycle in its entirety in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles. It was commissioned by the Irving S. Gilmore International Keyboard Festival for her teacher Gilbert Kalish. The variations are an adventure on Bach’s eternal theme.

Aria • Bach

Rube Goldberg Variation • C. Curtis Smith

Gilmore Variation • Jennifer Higdon

Short Variation • Inna Faliks

Ghost Variation • Mischa Zupko

Fantasy Variation • Stanley Walden

Variation Fugato • Bright Sheng

Variacion • Tania Leon

Kontraphunktus • Derek Bermel

Variation 13 • Bach

My Goldberg • David Del Tredici

Chasing Goldberg • Fred Lerdahl

Yet Another Goldberg Variation • William Bolcom (For The Left Hand Alone)

Goldmore Variation • Lukas Foss

Variation Of Variation With Variation • Ralph Gothoni

Melancholy Minuet • Fred Hersch

Aria (Reprise) • Bach

Weill Hall Pro Musicis Concert

On Wednesday, March 16, 2011 at 8:00 PM, in Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, as part of their 45th Anniversary year, Pro Musicis presents pianist Inna Faliks, winner of the 2005 Pro Musicis International Award.


  • Ludwig van Beethoven, Fantasy in G minor, Op. 77
  • Franz Schubert, Sonata in A minor, Op. Posth. 143
  • Franz Liszt, from Transcendental Etudes, No. 11 & 10
  • Sofia Gubaidulina, Chaconne
  • Maurice Ravel, Gaspard de la Nuit, Poems for Piano

Tickets $25 (seniors/students $15) at the Box Office or online at www.CarnegieHall.org or CarnegieCharge 212-968-4288

For information, Pro Musicis, 212-787-0993 www.promusicis.org

Discovering Piano Works by Women Composers

This special program featuring the music of women composers including Tania Leon, Lera Auerbach, Fanny Mendelssohn, Clarice Assad, Sofia Gubaidulina, Augusta Read Thomas and others. It will be featured in Ms. Faliks’ upcoming seasons in venues such as the National Gallery in Washington, DC.