Anxiety of Influence: Timo Andres, Leo Carey, and Peter Mendelsund

Tuesday, July 30, 2013 at 7:00pm

Housing Works Bookstore is pleased to host a discussion with pianist/composer Timo Andres, artist/book designer Peter Mendelsund, and The New Yorker's Leo Carey. Andres, whose most recent album, Home Stretch, explores and recreates pieces by Mozart and Brian Eno, is a huge admirer of Peter Mendelsund, who has designed book jackets for iconic authors such as Joyce, Kafka, Cortázar, and Foucault. Together with the help of critic Carey, they will talk about their respective "anxiety of influences" and the ways in which they hope to remain faithful to a tradition while making it their own. Copies of Home Stretch, which releases that day, will be on sale.

Timo Andres is a composer and pianist who grew up in rural Connecticut and now lives in Brooklyn, NY. His debut album, Shy and Mighty, which features 10 interrelated pieces for two pianos, performed by Andres and pianist David Kaplan, was released by Nonesuch Records in May 2010 to critical acclaim. Alex Ross wrote in the The New Yorker that Shy and Mighty "achieves an unhurried grandeur that has rarely been felt in American music since John Adams came on the scene… more mighty than shy, [Andres] sounds like himself." In the current season, Andres plays a solo recital of his own works alongside those by Chopin, Thomas Adès and Schumann for Lincoln Center's Great Performers; a solo recital for San Francisco Performances, and a duo program with Gabriel Kahane for the Library of Congress. Commissions include a new piano quintet written for Jonathan Biss and the Elias String Quartet, presented by Wigmore Hall, Carnegie Hall, the Concertgebouw Amsterdam, and San Francisco Performances; a solo piano work for Kirill Gerstein commissioned by the Gilmore Foundation, and a new string quartet for the Library of Congress, to be premiered by The Attacca Quartet. Recent highlights include a weekend of performances in Los Angeles, featuring a new work for the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, his own re-composition of the Mozart "Coronation" Concerto and chamber works performed by the groundbreaking ensemble wild Up; performances of Crashing Through Fences by eighth blackbird, and solo recitals at (le) poisson rouge and Wigmore Hall. 

Leo Carey is a Senior Editor at The New Yorker magazine, where he has worked for fifteen years. He was born in Oxford, England and studied English Literature at Oxford University. As an editor at The New Yorker, he has worked on a wide range of non-fiction. His own writings have appeared in The New Yorker, the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Times Literary Supplement. In his spare time he plays the piano and cello.

Peter Mendelsund is the Associate Art Director of Alfred A. Knopf Books, the Art Director of Pantheon Books, Art Director of Vertical Press (and a recovering classical pianist). His designs have been described by The Wall Street Journal as being “the most instantly recognizable and iconic book covers in contemporary fiction.” His writing on literature, design and other matters can be found on his blog: A book of his design work and writing, Cover, comes out Spring 2014.

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