Born in Milan in 1965, Stefano Battaglia studied classical piano and has recorded the baroque, renaissance and modern classical repertoire as a soloist or as part of larger ensembles. Since the mid-1980s, while never losing sight of his classical background, Stefano Battaglia’s interest in improvisation has gradually brought him closer to the jazz idiom.
All the compositions on the album are inspired by fictional events or mythical places mentioned in literature (Italo Calvino, Jonathan Swift, Edgar-Allan Poe etc.).
Discussing his previous opus (the “Anyder” is one of the rivers flowing through the capital city of the island of Utopia in Thomas More’s eponymous fiction), Stefano Battaglia noted
I pushed myself to write songs and dances uninfluenced by the sophistication of contemporary musical languages, striving to shape pieces that might have been played on archaic instruments a thousand years ago. ECM
Inspired by the city of Ismaros mentioned in Homer’s “Odyssey”, “Ismaro” is a restrained and lyrical theme balancing nicely between folk music, semi-improvised classical piano and contemporary jazz.