Sergio Barer
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Sergio Barer


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"Almost Songs"

"Almost Songs makes fascinating and enjoyable listening".
"The style of the music is what is often called post-modern. It avoids strict adherence to classical forms, harmony, rhythms, etc. Nevertheless, it is easily accesible and is not ugly and full of non-musical sounds".
"It is rich food for thought and I have enjoyed playing it in the car, when I am alone and have time to reflect on the composer's ideas".
-Robert Plyler.
For full review go to - The Post-Journal, Jamestown


Almost Songs:
13 original pieces, each preceded by a poem: The Suite Moods, which includes Sadness, Despair, Fear, Anger, Boredom, Seriousness, Cheerfulness, Enthusiasm; and The Media Sonata, which includes:The Press, The Internet, Adults Watching TV, TV for Kids.
Piano Music for One Hand:
Music by classical composers like Camille Saint-Saens, Frank Bridge, Alexander Scriabin, and more contemporary composers like Enrique Santos, Dinu Lipati, Miriam Hyde and Michael Webster, all written for piano, one hand.
Masterworks of the New Era, Vol.13. First Piano Concerto



Sergio Barer was born in Mexico City and started to study the piano at the age of 6. He studied with Cuban pianists Marcia Freyre and Marcia Freyre de Andrade, in the Instituo Internacional de Arte, where he got awards for his talent. When he was a teenager, the Italian pianist and composer Mario Feninger heard him play in Mexico and encouraged him to come to Los Angeles to study with him and with American pianist Ian Brooks. He moved to L.A. and started taking private lessons with them while taking college level harmony and counterpoint courses. He also studied Baroque music interpretation with Sol Babitz, one of the pioneers in the research of the performing practices of the Baroque Era and founder of the Early Music Lab.

Sergio Barer made his debut in Mexico with a series of recitals in 1985 in Mexico City. That same year he appeared on a TV show called Estudio 54, (Studio 54). That show was a staple of the cultural life of Mexico at the time, showcasing all kinds of music, but with emphasis on classical music. It consisted of 3 hours, shown in 6 half hour segments during the week, and the first show he appeard on was called "Miniatures for the Piano". The next couple of years Barer continued with appearances in Mexico, on TV and in recital. He wrote the script and performed all the music for the 6 segments of a show of Estudio 54 called “You Know About Music, Too”, in which he explained fundamental concepts of music and illustrated them by playing complete pieces at the keyboard.

In 1988, Barer injured his left hand while practicing. A tour to South America was cancelled. He underwent treatments but could not practice more than 20 minutes at a time without swelling, so he decided to tackle the repertoire for one hand, pieces written for the right hand as well as pieces written for the left. Some composers, such as Michael Webster and Enrique Santos wrote pieces for him and he appeared in recital in Mexico and Los Angeles playing a full program for music for one hand. He also wrote the script and performed all the music in another 6 half hour miniseries of Estudio 54, this time called “Piano Music for One Hand”. In 1990, Barer appeared with the Orquesta Sinfonica del Instituto Politecnico Nacional playing Brittens’ Diversions for Piano One Hand and Orchestra and recorded a CD called “Piano Music for One Hand”, which was released through Corsaire Records.

In 1991, Sergio Barer was refered to the Taubman Institute to seek help with his left hand. He traveled to Amherst, Massachusetts, where he attended an intensive 2 week seminar on the Taubman technique. Then he got back to L.A. and studied with Nina Scolnik, a pupil of Edna Golansky and Dorothy Taubman. In those studies, he relearned to play the piano from scratch. He was instructed to drop all his repertoire, so as to avoid reinjuring himself by lapsing into his old habits. He went to Amherst again in 1992 and continued his studies with Nina Scolnik, until, in 1995, he reappeard playing pieces of the standard repertoire, in recital, with both hands again.

However, at that time, Barer discovered the joy of composing and decided to work on creating a repertoire of his own music. Mario Feninger reentered into his life and became his composing mentor. He composed mainly for the piano, for recital and concert, and developed some of his pieces around concepts that he expressed in short poems. That's how the concept for "Almost Songs" was born.

In 2002, after composing a long series of works which included several sonatas, suites, preludes, etudes, evolutions, a string quartet, a woodwinds trio, and a piano Concerto, Barer decided it was time to get back on stage and started learning his own music. On March 2nd, 2003, he reappeared playing a recital of music by Mexican composers,. including himself, with his Moods, a suite that consists of 9 short pieces, each preceded by a short poem. The program was very well received and many people loved not only the music, but the poetry, too. He played the same recital at the Mexican Consulate in Los Angeles, with great success. His profile was presented in Channel 22 of Mexico City, as part of a series of profiles of different Mexican artists.

There were more apearances until in July, 2005, Barer recorded the first CD of his music. In October 2005, the record “Almost Songs” was released with a recital at Zipper Hall of the Colburn School of Music in Los Angeles. The Jamestown Post-Journal called this CD “sensational listening”. In Oct 2006, his Piano concerto was selected for recording with the Kiev Symphony Orchestra by erm media. It was released in the series Masterworks of the New Era, Vol. 13 in January 2009. In 2007 he appeared in recital in Los Angeles and with singer Stephanie Hindemann and premiered two original songs on poems of Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz.