Daniel Libeskind in a black suit in front of a red wall, sitting on a geometric seat.
Photo: Stefan Ruiz

Daniel Libeskind’s “Classical Studies” Playlist

By Aileen Kwun
April 18, 2020
2 minute read

The prolific Polish-American architect and artist Daniel Libeskind—renowned for his bold-faced projects, such as the Jewish Museum in Berlin and the Denver Art Museum—finds great inspiration and creative kinship in music. A lesser-known fact: He was a regularly performing accordion prodigy for much of his childhood. Here, he shares with us a playlist of classical pieces that are helping him navigate this tumultuous time.

“Chaconne in G Minor,” Tomaso Antonio Vitali (performed by Jascha Heifetz)

“The height of virtuosity and depth of emotion.”

“Waltz no. 4 in F Major, Op. 34 No. 3,” Frédéric Chopin (performed by Dinu Lipatti)

“Aristocracy of the piano and intellectual delicacy.”

“Invention no. 13 in A Minor, BWV 784,” Johann Sebastian Bach (performed by Glenn Gould)

“Transcendental playing, and Bach’s medium.”

“3 Etudes in Concert, S. 144: No. 3 in D-Flat Major ‘Un sospiro,’” Franz Liszt (performed by Daniil Trifonov)

“Freshness, lucidity, and unsentimental romanticism.”

“3 Gymnopédies: No. 3, Lent et grave,” Erik Satie (arranged by Barker & Balsam for Trumpet and Jazz Orchestra, performed by Alison Balsom and the Guy Barker Orchestra)

“Satie and jazz with a haunting atmosphere.”

“Verklärte Nacht (Transfigured Night), Op. 4: IV. Sehr breit und langsam,” Arnold Schoenberg (performed by Isabelle Faust)

“Gorgeous playing, full of wisdom.”

“Tangos: III. Tenebroso,” Marcelo Bratke (performed by Ernesto Nazareth and Darius Milhaud)

“Joyful dynamism, and a window into Brazil.”

“Tambourin,” Jean-Philippe Rameau (performed by Vikingur Olafsson)

“Echoes of Gould, with mellow warmth.”

“Violin Concerto in D Major, Op. 35, TH 59: 3. Finale. Allegro vivacissimo,” Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (performed by Daniel Lozakovich, National Philharmonic Orchestra of Russia, Vladimir Spivakov)

“Perfect Russian exuberance and youthful vigor.”

“Piano Sonata No. 7 in B-Flat Major, Op. 83: III. Precipitato,” Sergei Prokofiev (performed by Alexander Melnikov)

“Transparent playing, with careful rage.”