Harold Danko

Harold Danko

Pianist and composer Harold Danko, a Masury native, has released his third recording of music inspired by Igor Stravinsky’s “The Rite of Spring.”

“Trillium” features Danko, saxophonist Rick Perry and cornetist Kirk Knuffke, all of whom have collaborated many times over the years.

The previous works in this series were “Rite Notes,” a solo piano recording, and “Spring Garden,” which featured a quartet.

All recordings have been released by SteepleChase and are available through Amazon and other online retailers.

“The Rite of Spring” debuted in 1913 and caused a riot at its premiere in France, but has come to be known as one of the cornerstone works of 20th century classical music for its mixture of lyricism and dissonance, quiet interludes and loud percussive breaks.

“The ‘Rite’ is ripe with musical content that strikes the ears of most jazz musicians,” Danko said. “The harmonies (shared by many French and Russian contemporaries) and melodies (some from folk music sources) are underpinned by his fresh and bold rhythms and connected by incredible musical architecture. Composers who followed, and most certainly film score writers, especially for horror and mystery genres, were also deeply influenced by this masterpiece.”

“The Rite of Spring” even introduced percussion beats and a sense of rebelliousness that would be embraced by rock ‘n’ roll 50 years later.

Danko has played with such luminaries as Lee Konitz, Woody Herman, Gerry Mulligan and Liza Minelli. He also taught at the Eastman School of Music, Rochester, N.Y.