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Jay and Gordon Gottlieb

In another unusual event recently, the twin brothers Jay and Gordon Gottlieb presented a joint recital called ''The Theater of Piano and Percussion'' at Merkin Concert Hall. Jay, the pianist, has a long list of prizes and recordings to his credit. Gordon, the percussionist, plays with the New York Philharmonic and has performed with all kinds of popular musicians, from Lena Horne and Lionel Hampton to Bette Midler and Johnny Mathis.

Looking for theatricality as well as musicality in their recital, they shared the stage with a storyteller named Brother Blue and a jazz group called French Toast. The evening's material was equally varied. The first half blended works by George Crumb (part of the 1973 ''Makrokosmos'') and Max Lifchitz into a seamless tapestry with African drumming and spoken narration. The second portion began with Jay's virtuosic playing of excepts from Preludes by Maurice Ohana, and ended with Gordon's own composition ''Setshot'' -- a peripatetic piece that incorporates tight jazz riffs, a wistful folk song, and an unexpected visit to Stravinsky's ''Rite of Spring.'' It was an unpredictable evening, and much of the time, an invigorating one. Such a cheerfully mixed bag is not encountered every day.

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