What the Media Says About
Jonathan Haas, Virtuoso Timpanist
Click HERE to read a November 2009
Wall Street Journal feature
and HERE to read a January-February 2010
Symphony Magazine feature
on Jonathan Haas
"… Jonathan Haas -- the world's foremost solo timpanist and a passionate flag-bearer for the timpani's solo potential..."
LOS ANGELES TIMES
"Jonathan Haas, the soloist, gave a virtuosic performance on all manner
of bells, blocks, canisters (metal and wood), gongs, drums and cymbals
(some suspended directly over his head) as well as a kettledrum said to
be the largest in the world…"
NEW YORK TIMES
"Wherever one finds a percussion instrument waiting to be struck or
strummed, [Haas] is probably nearby... with consummate expertise."
NEW YORK TIMES
"The only solo virtuoso timpanist around, the superstar of the timpani."
CLASSICAL PUBLIC RADIO NETWORK
"[Jonathan Haas is] the Paganini of the timpani."
"It is not hard to be entertained by the sheer theatricality of
imaginative [drummer] Jonathan Haas… in a virtuoso
LOS ANGELES TIMES
"Champion of the timpani, virtuoso Jonathan Haas has carried his
instrument over wide musical lines, from performances with rock groups
like Aerosmith and Frank Zappa to classical concertos."
"People whooped and hollered after the dazzling display of timpani virtuosity by Jonathan Haas."
"Jonathan Haas turns music for percussion on its ear."
"Percussionist Jonathan Haas, arguably the world's greatest living timpanist…"
ST. PAUL PIONEER PRESS
"Alone on stage, timpanist Jonathan Haas gave a virtuoso demonstration
of various… techniques, moving seamlessly… and making the
ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
"In Philip Glass's brash Concerto Fantasy for Two Timpanists and
Orchestra, fourteen kettledrums thump away non-stop in front of a vast
orchestral spread: it was so outrageously simple it had to work, and
this time there was virtuosity in trumps from the soloists Jonathan
Haas and John Chimes."
THE INDEPENDENT (United Kingdom)
"[The Philip Glass timpani concerto] should continue to be a hit on
orchestra programs, thanks to its ability to create a visual spectacle,
but also for a number of musical reasons, such as its extraordinary use
of 14 timpani along with some rapid tuning changes that make it
feasible to play long and intricate melodic lines. If the
critical acclaim earned thus far is any indication, this double
concerto should readily find a permanent place in the repertoire."
"Of Glass's Concerto Fantasy, the best summation is: Wow. It is a
completely exhilarating explosion of primitive energy, zinging with
cross-rhythms, repetitive patterns (of course), shifting pulses taken
at breathtaking speed. The mere sight of Jonathan Haas and
Svetoslav Stoyanov, magicians both, in total command of a battery of 14
polished kettle drums was dazzling enough in itself."
"Jonathan Haas, the noted percussion virtuoso who asked Glass to write
the concerto… brought a combination of dazzle, grace and total
assurance to the demanding solo parts."
"The second in this season’s classical series by the Naples
Philharmonic Orchestra is titled 'Schubert’s The
Great.’ And that’s exactly what the program proved
itself to be — and not because of Schubert. No.
Nestled in the middle of the evening’s program was an absolutely
phenomenal piece by contemporary American composer Philip Glass.
'Concerto Fantasy for Two Timpanists and Orchestra' proved itself to be
a blockbuster. The concerto was commissioned by guest artist
Jonathan Haas, one of the evening’s two timpanists.
Fourteen timpani front and center on the concert stage! The
visual impact alone of the sheer mass of gleaming timpani was nearly
overwhelming. This is a concerto with such great rhythm, such
energy, it was virtually impossible not to head nod or toe tap.
Every time I reluctantly tore my eyes away from what was unfolding on
stage and sneaked a peek at the audience, that’s what any number
of them were doing. I must confess I, who am not always thrilled
by some of the 'new classical music' was practically whimpering in
ecstasy throughout the entire performance. I didn’t want it
to end. And when it was finally over — when it was
impossible to believe either timpanist could add one more note before
their arms fell off — the audience erupted. Cheered.
Gave the orchestra and the two timpanists a standing ovation.
Thus, by the time Schubert’s 'Great' began, we had already
experienced the great."
NAPLES DAILY NEWS
"… one of the most engaging, impressive and beautiful things
Glass has done. The cadenza preceding the third movement, highly
athletic as it is, proves to be a warm-up for Evelyn Glennie and
Jonathan Haas before the technical tour de force of the finale."
"Normally tucked away at the back of an orchestra, timpani comes to the
fore in [Philip Glass'] Concerto Fantasy. Haas sits in a ring of
seven large timpani drums… The effect, during yesterday's
rehearsal in the whisper-quiet Concert Hall of the Sydney Opera House,
was stunning. The first delicate blows of the timpani mallets
barely cause a ripple, but it builds into a shimmer and then a
thundering wall of sound."
SYDNEY MORNING HERALD
"Haas, timpani soloist extraordinaire, demonstrated masterly technique…"
on title below to read the full article!
Breaking the Sound Barrier
Symphony Magazine, January-February 2010
Percussion Moves to Center Stage
Wall Street Journal, November 20, 2009
Yamaha Signature Sounds Feature on Jonathan Haas
"Weekend America" (American Public Media)
Radio Feature on Jonathan Haas, December 8, 2007
Click HERE to listen
Drumming up Support for Timpani's Starring Role
Angeles Times, October 2007
KUSC FM Classical Music Radio
Interview with Jonathan Haas on "Arts Alive"
Click HERE, then scroll down and click on the link to the 10/13/07 Program;
Jonathan's interview begins at about 5:30 minutes into the broadcast
From Behind the Orchestra
Concerto Breaks New Ground
Bumps a Bit of Jump Into Festival
Louis Symphony's Odd Mix Works Wonderfully
Louis Post Dispatch
New and Old Generate Lots of Energy
The Baltimore Sun
the Timpanists Had to Say for Themselves
New York Times
Big Drummer Man
Puts His Work Where It Can Shine
Out in Front