Hwaen Ch'uqi, Pianist and Composer

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A first foray into the compositional world of Hwaen Ch'uqi, these works for piano, four hands elevate the genre to equal stature with the canon of profound music whilst demonstrating that tonality remains relevant, compelling, even necessary! (For sound samples, please see CWV 19 and 33 on the Compositions page.)

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Modest in its implications, this album's title belies the hight of craft and depth of emotion which Ch'uqi attains and conveys through the conduits of these master composers. Indeed, his concept of time and space are staggering in their breadth and pacing while intimate in their feel. This is most evident in the B-Flat Sonata of Schubert and the Prélude, Choral et Fugue of Franck - massive bookends to the two Scarlatti gems. A pungent depth of tone, true stratification of voices, and an ability to pull one linearly through vast swaths of melody unite into an architecture which simply must be experienced to be believed.

AUDIO SAMPLES

Schubert, F. - Piano Sonata, B-Dur, D.960
1. Molta moderato MP3
2. Andante sostenuto MP3
3. Scherzo MP3
4. Allegro ma non troppo MP3

Scarlatti, D.
5. Keyboard Sonata, ha-moll, K.87 MP3
6. Keyboard Sonata, F-Dur, K.17 MP3

Franck, C.
7. Prélude, Choral et Fugue, ha-moll, FWV 21 MP3

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The first of a series of albums in which the compositional mastery and pianistic artistry of Hwaen Ch'uqi are brought to bear through riveting performances by the very pianist/composer himself, this disc promises appeal to music lovers of all generations and stripes. It consists of a single grand opus entitled De Mes Amis, Les Animaux (or, Of My Friends, The Animals). The twelve-movement work was commissioned with an eye toward enriching the pedagogical literature for piano students at the late intermediate to early advanced level. However, its highly descriptive writing, tonal language, familiar idioms, and broad, dramatic arc, make this a compelling work for the concert stage and assures it a lasting place in the serious performer's repertory. A score of the work is also available. Please consult CWV 34 on the Compositions page for a link to the score as well as for audio samples.

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Two master improvisers- a jazz saxophonist and the other a concert pianist- join forces for a record of duos that defy easy categorization.

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