The Liaisons Project is a landmark commissioning and concert project, conceived by concert pianist Anthony de Mare, that has invited 36 of the world's foremost contemporary composers to "re-imagine" a song by legendary musical theater composer Stephen Sondheim.

The result is a brand new world-class piano repertory (LIAISONS: Re-Imagining Sondheim from the Piano) that reveals Sondheim’s influence across multiple genres and generations. Composers hail from seven countries, range in age from 32 to 76, and span the worlds of classical, pop, jazz, opera, musical theater and film. See COMPOSERS for the complete list.

Since 2011 Mr. de Mare has been touring iterations of LIAISONS across the country, to widespread critical and popular acclaim. The first 32 pieces received their NYC premieres over the span of two sold-out concerts at Symphony Space. in April 2012 and March 2013, receiving rave reviews from Anthony Tommasini of the New York Times and others. Mr. Sondheim also gave a live interview at each concert. See WATCH/LISTEN for performance and interview excerpts.

At its essence, LIAISONS is an homage. But unlike any other Sondheim tribute to date, its focus is exclusively on the music. The Project leaves no doubt that, aside from his genius as a lyricist, Stephen Sondheim is one of the century's greatest and most influential composers.

Over the past two years, LIAISONS programs have played to sold-out crowds at concert halls and universities in major cities from Chicago and San Francisco to Portland, Kansas City, Fort Saskatchwan and Fort Worth. Performed exclusively by de Mare through 2016, individual pieces can be combined to form an infinite variety of concert, recital and residency programs. LIAISONS will ultimately be released as a 3-CD recording, currently in process, as well as a published collection.

For those new to Sondheim’s work, LIAISONS offers a delightful introduction to it; for those already familiar, the context of a concert hall inspries whole new insights and appreciations. Check CONCERTS for a performance near you!

Real-time news and updates can be found on our facebook page:


Andy AkihoInto the Woods
from Into the Woods
Mason BatesVery Put Together
after "Putting it Together" from Sunday in the Park with George
Eve BeglarianPerpetual Happiness
after "Happiness" from Passion
Derek BermelSorry/Grateful
from Company
Jherek BischoffThe Ballad of Guiteau
from Assassins
William BolcomA Little Night Fughetta
after "Anyone Can Whistle" and "Send in the Clowns"
Jason Robert BrownBirds of Victorian England
after "Green Finch and Linnet Bird" from Sweeney Todd
Kenji BunchThe Demon Barber
after "The Ballad of Sweeney Todd " from Sweeney Todd
Mary Ellen ChildsNow/Later/Soon
from A Little Night Music
Michael DaughertyEverybody’s Got the Right
from Assassins
Peter GolubA Child of Children and Art
after "Children and Art" from Sunday in the Park with George
Ricky Ian GordonEvery Day a Little Death
from A Little Night Music
Annie GosfieldA Bowler Hat
from Pacific Overtures
Jake HeggieI'm Excited. No, You're Not.
after "A Weekend in the Country" from A Little Night Music
Fred HerschNo One Is Alone
from Into the Woods
Ethan IversonSend in the Clowns
from A Little Night Music
Gabriel KahaneBeing Alive
from Company
Phil KlineParaphrase (Someone in a Tree)
after "Someone in a Tree" from Pacific Overtures
Tania Leongoing... gone
after "Good Thing Going" from Merrily We Roll Along
Ricardo LorenzWorst Empanadas in London
after "Worst Pies in London" and "A Little Priest" from Sweeney Todd
Wynton Marsalis"That Old Piano Roll"
Paul MoravecI Think About You
after "Losing My Mind" from Follies
Nico MuhlyColor and Light
from Sunday in the Park with George
John MustoEpiphany
from Sweeney Todd
Thomas NewmanNot While I'm Around
from Sweeney Todd
David RakowskiThe Ladies Who Lunch
from Company
Steve ReichFinishing the Hat - Two Pianos
from Sunday in the Park with George
Eric RockwellYou Could Drive a Person Crazy
from Company
Daniel Bernard RoumainAnother Hundred People
from Company
Frederic RzewskiI'm Still Here
from Follies
Rodney SharmanNotes on Beautiful
after "Beautiful" from Sunday in the Park with George
Duncan SheikJohanna
from Sweeney Todd
David ShireLove is In the Air
A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum
Bernadette SpeachIn and Out of Love
after "Liaisons" and "Send in the Clowns" from A Little Night Music
Mark-Anthony TurnagePretty Women
from Sweeney Todd
Nils VigelandMerrily We Roll Along
from Merrily We Roll Along


The LIaisons Project offers a unique opportunity: to commission a major composer, help bring a new piece of music into the world and make a significant contribution to the international piano repertory.

Only one commission remains available. Please contact the Producer for more information (see CONTACT tab).

Liaisons is grateful to the following individuals and institutions for their visionary commissioning support (as of May 1, 2013):

Anonymous • The Banff Centre • Scott & Roxanne Bok • The Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center (University of Maryland) • Beth Rudin de Woody • Heather & Justin Frank, M.D. • Dan Gallagher & Peter Shearer, M.D. • The Gilmore International Keyboard Festival (Ann Arbor) • Frank K. Godcheaux & Mark Murashige • The Perry & Martin Granoff Family Foundation • Bob and Anna Livingston • James & Ellen Marcus • Martin L. & Lucy Miller Murray • Music in the Loft (Chicago) • Anthony Razzano • Ben & Donna Rosen • The Rudin Foundation • The Schubert Club (Minneapolis • The David and Alice Shearer Fund • The Shen Family Foundation • Annaliese Soros • Tom Spain • Richard and Linda Sweetnam • William E. Terry

Donate now!


Upcoming Performances

August 8, 2014 -
Rockport, MA
Shalin Liu Performing Arts Center
view map
August 27, 2014 -
Highland Park, IL
Ravinia Festival
view map

Past Performances

April 13, 2014
Minneapolis, MN
The Schubert Club
more info
March 30, 2014
Davis, CA
Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts
more info
March 29, 2014
Davis, CA
Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts
more info
March 25, 2014
San Francisco, CA
The Artist Sessions: San Francisco Conservatory
more info
March 23, 2014
San Diego, CA
San Diego Library
November 3, 2013
New York, NY
Greenwich House Music School - Renee Weiler Concert Hall
Guest Artist - The Hilary Hahn Encores
Liaisons works by Nico Muhly, Mark Anthony Turnage, Mason Bates and Paul Moravec

more info
August 25, 2013
Highland Park, IL
Ravinia Festival
more info
August 10, 2013
Peterborough, NH
Mondadnock Music Festival
more info
May 31, 2013
Ashland, OR
Southern Oregon University
more info
May 22, 2013
Norfolk, VA
Virginia Arts Festival
more info
May 12, 2013
New York, NY
Tribeca New Music 2013 Festival
more info
April 7, 2013
Chicago, IL
Music in the Loft
more info
March 9, 2013
New York, NY
Symphony Space - Liaisons II (15 NYC Premieres)
more info
September 21, 2012
College Park, MD
Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center
more info
September 14, 2012
Kansas City, MO
UMKC - White Recital Hall
more info
May 1-2, 2012
Kalamazoo, MI
The Gilmore Festival
more info
April 21, 2012
New York, NY
Symphony Space- Liaisons I (17 NYC Premieres)
more info
March 12, 2012
San Francisco, CA
Music at Meyer Concert Series
more info
February 4, 2012
Fort Worth, TX
Cliburn Concerts
more info
January 21, 2012
Hudson, NY
Hudson Opera House
more info
October 18, 2011
New York, NY
The Century Club
more info
September 23, 2011
Fort Saskatchewan, Alberta
Dow Centennial Centre
more info
July 12, 2011
Portland, OR
Portland Piano International
more info



arr. Steve Reich
Finishing the Hat
arr. Jake Heggie
I'm Excited. No, You're Not
arr. Fred Hersch
No One is Alone
arr. Gabriel Kahane
Being Alive
arr. Ethan Iverson
Send in the Clowns




April 2012

“The adventurous [de Mare], a champion of contemporary music, merged his passion for Sondheim with his effort to expand the recital repertory. The resulting project required formidable virtuosity... de Mare’s playing was dynamic and stylish. I loved it.”

Anthony Tommasinithe New York Times
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August 2013

"After seeing de Mare’s triumphant performance, we definitely want to gain a deeper knowledge of the musicals. Moreover, we were impressed by de Mare’s ability to master everything from the most pyrotechnical classical compositions to the suave style of the jazz works..."

Viola de VoceThe Contrapuntist
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March 2013

" An adventurous project... Mr. de Mare performed with vivid commitment throughout, fully plumbing the nuances of each work. "

Vivien Schweitzerthe New York Times
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September 2012

“De Mare is a dynamic pianist, with technique and musicianship to burn. For those who love Sondheim and are interested in hearing new work from a variety of contemporary composers, [Liaisons is] a must-see occasion.

Bob AshbyShowBiz Radio, Washington DC
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September 2012

“The variety of the settings kept the audience engaged, and de Mare was formidable throughout. The evening was a refreshing alternative to the typical recital, and successfully promoted Sondheim's legacy as well...

Ruth CarverKC Metro
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June 2012

“A thrilling program… filled with surprise and inventiveness.”

Andy ProbstThe Sondheim Review

May 2012

“The concert offered a wide range of compositional styles and moods, highly colorful, and superbly played by de Mare.

C. Curtis-SmithM Live
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March 2012

“Liaisons is a revelation… a delightful recital with an exuberant close. De Mare’s playing was superb throughout, a combination of lyrical reflection and extroverted pyrotechnics.”

Joshua KosmanThe San Francisco Chronicle
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February 2012

“Just when you thought that there wasn't anything new in piano recitals anymore, along comes Anthony de Mare … a first-class pianist whose list of composer friends is a virtual who's who of American music… each piece is a fascinating exploration of the composer's style.”

Gregory IsaacsThe Fort Worth Star Telegram
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January 2012

“The ambitious endeavor of Anthony de Mare to create liaisons between musical theater and so-called “art-music” brings out his formidable piano technique and his charming, easy manner.”

Uel WadeSqwak.Com
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August 2011

“If anyone still doubted Sondheim’s prowess as an instrumental composer, this project should firmly lay those doubts to rest… de Mare’s concert kicked off energetically and his illuminating stage comments relaxed the atmosphere.”

Brett CampbellOregon ArtsWatch
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Anthony de Mare

Concert pianist Anthony de Mare is internationally recognized as one of the foremost performers of contemporary music and has inspired the creation of dozens of new works by some of today’s most distinguished composers and artists. He launched The Liaisons Project in 2008 and began giving critically acclaimed preview concerts throughout the U.S. and Canada in March 2011. In April 2012 he premiered 17 of the pieces in a highly praised sold out concert at Symphony Space, NYC, for which Anthony Tommasini of the New York Times extolled his “formidable virtuosity”; in a live onstage interview Mr. Sondheim called the Project “flattering… to hear composers take my music and take it seriously is a thrill.”

Mr. de Mare made his New York debut under the auspices of Young Concert Artists, prior to which he won First Prize and Audience Prize at the International Gaudeamus Interpreters Competition in The Netherlands and The International Competition of Contemporary Piano Music in France. He made his Carnegie Hall debut at Zankel Hall in 2005 and has toured extensively with such popular programs as The American Piano, Missing Peace (commissioned by The Rubin Museum), COOL~A Journey into the Influence of Jazz and his solo show, Playing with Myself, which played for an extended run at HERE Arts Center.
Mr. de Mare is a Yamaha Artist with nearly twenty recordings in his discography and was short-listed for a Grammy Award in 2011 and 2005. He is presently Professor of Piano at Manhattan School of Music and New York University.www.anthonydemare.com


Liaisons: Re-Imagining Sondheim from the Piano can be adapted to any context, and is especially well suited to university settings and performing arts series. Individual pieces can be combined to form an infinite variety of programs that appeal to audiences of all backgrounds, from chamber music and jazz festivals to recital series and residencies. Mr. de Mare works with each venue to tailor a program best suited to their audience and presenting needs.

Single programs last from 60-90 minutes and contain approximately 11-14 pieces. As many as three consecutive twelve-piece programs can be offered. Mr. de Mare delivers brief commentary between pieces, illuminating the composers, process and origin of the pieces. For those new to Mr. Sondheim’s work the programs provide a delightful introduction; for those already familiar with it, the context of a concert hall allows for new insights and appreciation.

Two elegant and simple multi-media components are available to complement the LIaisons performance: background slides with animated text, and a four-minute excerpt of the live interview given by Mr. Sondheim’s at the NYC premiere. Technical requirements are a projector with a DVI, HDMI or VGA input and/or connection to a computer running Windows XP (or later) or Mac OS X. In addition, two pieces require CD or mp3 playback along with a stage audio monitor for the performer: Steve Reich’s Finishing the Hat and Jason Robert Brown’s Birds of Victorian England.

A master teacher and lecturer, Mr. de Mare can offer residencies and lectures as well as day-, week- or semester-long curricula based on Liaisons material.


Liaisons is currently scheduled for release as a three-CD set in spring 2015 with Judith Sherman as engineer/producer. Studio recordings of 21 tracks have been made to date. Single tracks are not available at this time and a label/distributor has not been selected.

To sign up for the release mailing list please fill out the form below.

Financing and distribution opportunities are available, and tax-deductible contributions toward recording expenses are gratefully accepted:

Donate now!


for booking, commissions and more information

Rachel Colbert, Producer
(212) 473-2288

for press inquires:

April Thibeault, Public Relations
AMT Public Relations