Autumn 2020: Recordings

Frederic Chopin's music is among the most performed and oft-recorded of its genre. This presents an interesting challenge for modern pianists: how might one approach the music of a composer whose performance traditions are so well-established? Here, Viv McLean invites us to explore the complex and sometimes competing facets of Chopin's musical...
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Winter 2020: Recordings

ROMANCE:THE PIANO MUSIC OF CLARA SCHUMANNIsata Kanneh-Mason, pianoDecca[Total Time 76:00]www.deccaclassics.com Contributing to this year's bicentennial celebration of Clara Schumann's birth is the debut album of the twenty-three-year-old British pianist Isata Kanneh-Mason. In 2015, while a student at the Royal Academy of Music, Kanneh-Mason, a...
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Autumn 2019: Recordings

FARRENC: VARIATIONS FOR PIANOBiliana Tzinlikova, pianoPaladino Music PMR 0088[Total Time: 53:02]www.paladino.at This is a significant new recording of Louise Farrenc's piano works. The program consists of four sets of variations, all written in the 1830s, including Air russe varié (on the composer's own theme), one on the cavatina "Nel veder l...
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Summer 2019: Recordings

D'Albert was a prized student of Liszt and his piano transcriptions of Bach's organ works bear the influence of his master. Unlike some transcribers, who sought to glorify Bach by embellishing his works in grandeur, both Liszt and d'Albert stayed largely reverent to the original works. One exception here is d'Albert's version of the Passacaglia and...
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Spring 2019: Recordings

The two leading piano manufacturers in Paris during Chopin's lifetime were Érard and Pleyel. Chopin preferred Pleyel's instruments, praising what he heard as a more compelling cantabile, and subtler tonal palette. The 1847 Pleyel here possesses remarkable clarity, due in part to its quick decay time. Rutkowski's prowess with convincing agogic expr...
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November/December 2018: Recordings

Leif Ove Andsnes: SibeliusLeif Ove Andsnes, piano|Sony Classical88985408502[Total Time 67:00]sonyclassical.com In this recording of Jean Sibelius's little-known piano works, Andsnes, the tremendous pianist from Norway, pays tribute to his fellow Nordic musician. Andsnes has handpicked twenty-four pieces, representing all pa...
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September/October 2018: First Looks, Recordings

Haydn-cover Haydn Piano Sonatas, Volume 2 Anne-Marie McDermott, piano BCD9497 [Total Time 68:36] bridgerecords.com
In her second recording of Haydn sonatas, American pianist Anne-Marie McDermott presents a dazzling display of scintillating articulation. The clarity of her tone is aptly suited for Haydn's humorous style, which dances to life in the finale movements of both the Sonata in G Major, Hob. XVI:39, and the Sonata in A-flat Major, Hob. XVI:46. Equally i...
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May/June 2018: Recordings

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Debussy  Steven Osborne, piano  Hyperion CDA68161  [Total Time 73:21]  hyperion-records. co.uk Debussy Steven Osborne, piano Hyperion CDA68161 [Total Time 73:21] hyperion-records. co.uk Eleven years after the release of his recording of Debussy's complete set of preludes, British pianist Steven Osborne offers a captivating rendi...
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Jan/Feb 2018: First Looks: Recordings

First-Looks
 Nyman: Complete Piano Music Jeroen van Veen, piano Brilliant Classics 95112 [Total Time 1:50:45] brilliantclassics.com Prolific Dutch pianist-composer Jeroen van Veen presents all of Michael Nyman's existing solo piano music. Many will recognize Nyman (b. 1944) as composer of the soundtrack for the 1993 award-winning film The Piano, and—of th...
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CD & DVD Reviews: November/December 2017

CurrentsMichael Mizrahi, pianoNew Amsterdam Records NWAM075[Total Time 60:01]www.discogs.com Whether you are an avid fan of contemporary music, a casual listener looking for something off the beaten path, or a pianist looking for new music to program, there is much to admire here. Simply put, this terrific album features solo piano music by a handf...
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CD Reviews: September/October 2017

Outhere Music Ravel, Scriabin: Miroirs Andrew Tyson, piano Alpha-Classica ALPHA 277 [Total Time 58:39] www.outhere-music.com/en/albums/miroirs-alpha-277 Twenty-year-old Andrew Tyson is a native of Durham, North Carolina, and the rising star's second CD features piano works of Ravel and Scriabin. This highly-recommended release was recorded on a Bec...
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CD Reviews: July/August 2017

Raskowski-Etude_20170625-210744_1
David Rakowski Etudes, Vol 4 Amy Briggs, piano, toy piano and celestaBridge 9477Total Time [87:20]www.bridgerecrords.com This is the fourth volume of Briggs's survey of the staggering 100 piano études of David Rakowski, composed between 1998 and 2010. The studies are characteristically short, stylistically eclectic, and often cleverly titled. Accor...
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CD/DVD Reviews: May/June 2017

Les mains nuesMompou • Boulanger • ChaillouMoisès Fernández Via, pianistUrtext Digital Classics JBCC 231[Total Time 60:04]www.urtextonline.com "My hands and I live alone in a small apartment in the rue du Jardinet…" is an arresting phrase from Via's short story "Bare Hands," written for this CD. The story is published in the liner notes, and, toget...
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CD Reviews: March/April 2017

Bach: Inventions and Sinfonias Zhu Xiao-Mei, piano Accentus Music ACC 30350 [Total Time 45:47] www.accentus.com These inventions and sinfonias serve as a marvelous performance resource for teachers and students. Zhu's approach is forthright, and, within each of these tightly constructed miniatures, the dialogue between the voices is distinct and cl...
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CD and DVD Reviews January/February 2017

Maurice Ravel Carlo Grante, piano Music & Arts CD-1289 [Total Time 58:05] www.musicandarts.com This album offers unique interpretations of several of Ravel's masterworks on a Bösendorfer Model 290 Imperial. Performed with crisp pedaling and attentive respect for articulation and attack, both Pavane pour une infante défunte and Miroirs stand out...
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