Melancholy and Mirth: Alessio Bax and Lucille Chung in Recital

Alessio Bax & Lucille Chung

In a suave display of synchronous ensemble, duo-pianists Alessio Bax and wife Lucille Chung performed keyboard, four-hand music under the auspices of the Steinway Society, Saturday, January 11 at the Hammer Theatre, San Jose. Music by Schubert, Debussy, Stravinsky and Piazzolla provided an emotional and color diapason of melancholy and mirth, traversing a range of piano music either meant for the salon or literally conceived on an orchestral scale, vehicles for the gifted duo whose acuity and precision may have reminded older auditors of the golden era of Vronsky and Babin.

Read full story
Archived in these categories: 20th Century, Classical Era, Piano, Romantic Era


Pianist Keiko Shichijo in Aptos

Keiko Shichijo

In the close and intimate space of The Episcopal Church of St. John the Baptist in Aptos, which handed out warm and delicious apple cider, a cozy afternoon audience was treated to a world-class piano performance from Keiko Shichijo. Her repertoire was far from conventional; most of the composers weren’t household names, but still carried a substantial torch among their own people. From the pianist we heard a performance of cultural exuberance: 6 Dances by Armenian composer Komitas, Feux d’artifice by French composer Claude Debussy, Charmes by Catalan composer Frederic Mompou, Meditations by Dutch composer Rosaline Hirs, and 6 Moments Musicaux by Austrian composer Franz Schubert.

Read full story
Archived in these categories: 20th Century, 21st Century, Piano, Romantic Era


Intimate Audacities: Pianist Changyong Shin in Recital

Changyong Shin

A modest but well-pleased audience hailed pianist Changyong Shin as he concluded his Sunday, November 17 recital for Steinway Society – The Bay Area at the Independence High School auditorium in San Jose. Responding with one encore, Chopin’s Grande valse brillante in E-flat Major, Op. 18, rendered flawlessly, Shin more than confirmed his prowess in music that demands audacity, dexterity, and poetry by such diverse personalities as Beethoven, Chopin, Ravel, and Granados. Shin seems to embody that “smart performer of smart music,” to paraphrase Ned Rorem — that musician whose mind proves as agile as his gifted fingers. The two large works on the program, Beethoven’s Piano Sonata No. 30 in E Major, Op. 109, and Ravel’s daunting Gaspard de la nuit, each required the careful balance of deft articulation and intellectual acumen to bring off manifestation of power and lyric intimacy at the same time.

Read full story
Archived in these categories: 20th Century, Classical Era, Piano, Romantic Era


Monterey Symphony – Pianist Kun Woo Paik returns for a Double Header

Pianist Kun Woo Paik & Conductor Max Bragado-Darman

Last night at Sunset Center conductor Max Bragado-Darman and the Monterey Symphony presented its second concert of the 2019-2020 season, and it was quite an unusual program. It featured Korean pianist Kun Woo Paik performing two concertos — Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 27 in B-flat major, K. 595 and Brahms Piano Concerto No. 1, Op. 15 in D Minor. Very rarely does a symphonic program contain no other works but a pair of piano concertos, and thereby hangs a tale.

Read full story
Archived in these categories: Classical Era, Concerto, Monterey Symphony, Orchestral, Piano, Romantic Era


Pianist Vadym Kholodenko in Miami Recital

Vadym Kholodenko

On Friday November 8, 2019, Vadym Kholodenko, Winner of the Gold medal at the 2013 Van Cliburn Competition, played an utterly spectacular piano recital at Florida International University’s Wertheim Concert Hall in Miami.

The first half of the recital was devoted to works of Mozart and Beethoven — Mozart’s Fantasia in C Minor, K.475, Beethoven’s Seven Bagatelles, Op. 33 and Rondo a Capriccio,Op.129 (“Rage Over a Lost Penny”). His remarkable range of expressive color and dynamics brought the audience to its feet  with a standing ovation.

Read full story
Archived in these categories: Piano, Romantic Era