Transformation: Stravinsky / Scarlatti / Brahms / Ravel
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Wang has both the energetic, fearless imagination of youth and the probing sensitivity that in most artists comes only with maturity - as well as the keyboard technique to put all her ideas flawlessly into action . . . Extravagantly gifted on every front. -- San Francisco Chronicle
Top Customer Reviews
This, her second solo album, begins with a famous knuckle-cruncher, the Three Movement form Petrushka (1921), where we can compare her directly to Evgeny Kisisn and Maurizio Pollini. She bows to neither for technique, and her quick tempos are fearless. Pollini sounds ore aristocratic, Kisisn more grand, but Wang's light, sparkling rendition is more breathtaking because she really does make the technical hurdles seem effortless. This kind of control is jaw-dropping, for once giving meaning to that cliche. DG's sound is first-rate, and so is the piano she has chosen. By comparison, Pollini's piano sounds tinny and hard.
I wish the rest of the program didn't seem like an audition for a piano competition, consisting of two delicate Scarlatti sonatas, the humongous Paganini Variations of Brahms, and as a taste treat at the end, Ravel's La valse. It wasn't necessary to display so methodically that Wang can cover all bases. that said, the Scarlatti is done with charm and an easy touch' not for her the brittle brilliance of Horowitz. Let me confess that my interest in Brahms's big-deal piano works is only passing.Read more ›
Yeah right, I thought- I have certainly heard that before. But it was absolutely true! Words are lacking to explain this, but despite all the great pianists I have heard, this was a special and unique experience. Her playing translates well in this recording; technical brilliance? No doubt. Expressiveness and musical sensitivity beyond her years? Well yes, very much so!
She has a unique ability to make musical sense out of complex pieces that would simply be noise in lesser hands.
A fabulous young artist!
The open works - a triptych of pieces from Stravinsky's ballet Pétrouchka alone are worth buying this recording. Wang's virtuosity is stunning - the clarity of her technique is probably unmatched on other recordings of the piano version of this music. And her interpretation doesn't stop there. Her ability to transform Stravinsky's rhythms into pianistic jewels is a feat worthy of adulation. There is as much atmosphere in these three moments as in the ballet with full orchestra! Wang follows these with two Scarlatti Sonatas (in E and in f minor) and her way with these challenging pieces is once again as though they came from her own creative live of thinking - crisp, elegant, probing.
For this listener the Brahms 'Variations on a Theme by Paganini' is a complete success, not only because of her ability to present this difficult work with utter ease, but her choice to place the Brahms in between the two Scarlatti Sonatas is a stroke of programming genius.Read more ›
performances of the most demanding works are achieved with apparent ease,
and she does play some of the most demanding works. More importantly, they
are done with astounding finesse. Her recordings, at least of 19th- and 20th-century
works, will be welcome additions to the collections of anyone interested in fine
with artistic sensitivity of the highest order. The Scarlatti sonata which I have heard many many times was just a revelation while the Stravinsky and Brahms just dazzled me for someone so young. I greatly look forward to when
she tries her skills at Beethoven, Schumann, and Mozart. It is on my List of Intentions to see her live some time
in the future. I can't imagine what she will be like 10 years from now when she begins to mature. I intend to still be around to find out. The sound of the piano on the recording is beautifully natural. This is a CD to have if you love great piano playing.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Since I listened to Yuja Wang playing live (last year, during the "George Enescu" International Festival in Bucharest, with San Francisco Symphony under Michel Tilson... Read morePublished 12 days ago by P. Adrian
Truly captivating keyboards - tonality, and every note a joy!Published 3 months ago by Thomas H. Spitters
Well beyond my capacity to understand the nuance of what I'm hearing in the variations. However, I can appreciate the virtuosity of the playing and its utterly beautiful. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Pro-te-an
Cold, Cold, Cold
I've been thinking about Yuja Wang lately,because her entire catalog is on sale at Arkiv.. Read more
Magnificent pianist. Listen and experience pure delight! I am not being hyperbolic when I call her work sublime.Published 20 months ago by Flush