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Solo Piano - Released April 8, 2021 | Canovass

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Solo Piano - Released March 19, 2021 | Canovass

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Solo Piano - Released March 18, 2021 | GBMUSIC

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Solo Piano - Released March 12, 2021 | MUSO

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason
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Solo Piano - Released February 5, 2021 | La Grange à Sons

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Recorded 2020 Salle Molière, Palais de Bondy, Lyon (France)
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Solo Piano - Released October 23, 2020 | Warner Classics

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It's unclear who called Alexandre Tharaud "Le poète du piano"; searches for the phrase outside of references to this release yield nothing, and it would not be out of the question that this unconventional pianist bestowed the title upon himself. In some cases, "bad boy of the piano" might be a more appropriate title. Tharaud is nothing if not full of surprises, including popular songs (try The Beach Boys adaptations) and such adventures as a wildly decorated "Turkish Rondo" of Mozart. This is, after all, a pianist who doesn't keep a piano in his home, preferring to practice at friends' homes where he has to concentrate on the material. Typically, in what is supposed to be an anthology, Tharaud includes a good deal of newly recorded material, including works from a cycle called Corpus volubilis that he composed himself. The selections cover recordings from 2009 to 2020, and they're divided into three sections (three CDs in the physical version): "Solo," "Concerto," and "Raretés & Surprises." Most of the works in the first two parts are well known, with Tharaud often applying novel treatments. The third section is pure Tharaud, containing not only the Corpus volubilis pieces but also delightful pieces by Jean Wiéner and Paul Le Flem, both little known outside of French regions. One is struck by the breadth of Tharaud's repertory; he is capable of fresh, Gould-like Scarlatti and Rameau, Romantic standards, and contemporary pieces, all insightful and compelling. Ultimately, Tharaud is the kind of musician listeners either love or hate, but this is a fair representation of his talents. © TiVo
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Solo Piano - Released September 4, 2020 | BIS

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - 4F de Télérama
In 2019, at the age of 22, Alexandre Kantorow became the first French pianist to win the prestigious Tchaikovsky Competition. Before then he had released three acclaimed albums, awarded distinctions such as "Diapason d'or de l'Année" and Gramophone's "Editor's Choice" and earning Kantorow descriptions ranging from 'Liszt reincarnated' to 'a firebreathing virtuoso with a poetic charm and innate stylistic mastery'. The present recital, his first release since the Tchaikovsky Competition, offers plenty of scope for virtuosity, poetry and charm, always filtered through an acute stylistic consciousness. The programme is constructed around three rhapsodies, a genre whose improvisatory character corresponds perfectly with the spirit of Romanticism but here interpreted by three highly distinct artistic temperaments: Franz Liszt, Johannes Brahms and Béla Bartók. © BIS Records

Solo Piano - Released September 4, 2020 | harmonia mundi

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This box set assembles the complete Beethoven symphonies, patiently transcribed for piano over a quarter of a century and recorded for harmonia mundi by a glittering array of soloists in the late 1980s. Liszt’s assiduity in this task reminds us of his spiritual, well-nigh religious admiration for the older composer, a genius ‘consecrated in art’ whose ‘conscientious translator’ he wished to be, thanks to the latest pianistic advances. Traduttore or traditore? Judge for yourself: Liszt does not make simple reductions or arrangements, but totally rewrites the works, as if they had been originally conceived for the piano! © harmonia mundi
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Solo Piano - Released July 24, 2020 | Mode Records

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Solo Piano - Released June 19, 2020 | Monkey Sounds

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Solo Piano - Released June 19, 2020 | Monkey Sounds

Solo Piano - Released May 1, 2020 | La discothèque idéale de Diapason

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Solo Piano - Released February 7, 2020 | Mirare

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason
With this album, pianist Tanguy de Williencourt offers an original vision of Beethoven. The album includes various pieces, some with a “Webernian” length of 30 seconds to 2 minutes, consisting in skits into the musician’s imagination, like ripped off pages of the genius’ diary. In the time of Beethoven, French was in fashion. As their French inspired name indicates, the Bagatellen were sometimes light, sometimes erotic. Beethoven’s Bagatellen, as a name (more than a form) punctuated the composer’s entire career. Yet, he referred to them as his ‘Kleinigkeiten’, little things. A series of charming and dedication pieces (Für Elise), they, nevertheless, became almost prophetic in 1825, when Beethoven’s language resolutely began to foresee the future. © François Hudry/Qobuz

Solo Piano - Released November 27, 2019 | La discothèque idéale de Diapason

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Solo Piano - Released November 1, 2019 | Deutsche Grammophon

Distinctions Choc de Classica
In tribute to the life and art of the Viennese pianist Jörg Demus, who died in April 2019, Eloquence releases his earliest recordings of Schubert’s Impromptus and Moments Musicaux. By the time of these sessions, which took place over a week in April 1958, Demus was not yet 30 but already an experienced recording artist, having made LPs of the duet music for Westminster with his Viennese colleague Paul Badura-Skoda, as well as a Remington Records disc of the Moments musicaux and much else besides, focusing on the Austro-German repertoire of the Classical and early-Romantic eras which would make his reputation. The Deutsche Grammophon engineers captured Demus more lucidly and favourably than their rivals, and in both mono and stereo incarnations these records would stand the test of time, though they have never been reissued as a complete set on CD. Newly remastered from the original tapes, they reveal the depth of Demus’s understanding in Schubert’s music, an unfussy technique and a modesty which never seeks to impose pathos and profundity from without but which dances with a rare lightness of spirit. Born and raised in Vienna, Demus understood this music as a precursor to the popular waltzes and polkas of the Strauss family. ‘Only a complete realization and comprehension of the accompanimental rhythms – precise and yet with a slight touch of a personal accent – will in many cases create the right atmosphere.’ When he died in April 2019, one of the many affectionate Austrian obituaries referred to Demus as ‘the ballet-master of ten fingers’: a description that summed him up perfectly, as these recordings demonstrate. (© Decca Music Group Limited / Universal Music Australia Pty Ltd.)
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Solo Piano - Released November 1, 2019 | BIS

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Born in 1903, Aram Khachaturian became the most significant twentieth-century musical figure in the then Soviet Republic of Armenia. Many of his most important works date from the first half of his career. The expressive immediacy of his music, conditioned by his Armenian heritage with its sensuous melodic writing, its vibrant orchestration and rhythmic drive – all resulted in a popularity equalled by few composers of his generation. Although he is primarily associated with large orchestral scores – including the ballets Gayaneh and Spartacus, perennial favourites with concert audiences – he also left a number of works for piano solo. For his début disc, the Jordanian-Palestinian pianist Iyad Sughayer has put together a recital spanning from the ample and demanding Sonata to the delightful Children’s Album, consisting of ten miniatures, in turn playful and poignant. The recital closes with a piece which did a great deal to establish Khachaturian’s name near the outset of his international career. Composed in 1932 (allegedly in a single evening), the Toccata in E-flat minor soon established itself among the showpieces of the modern repertoire and was to become a calling-card for aspiring virtuosi. Iyad Sughayer was born in 1993 in Amman, where he received his early training. He is currently based in the UK. © BIS Records
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Solo Piano - Released September 13, 2019 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - 4F de Télérama - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
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Solo Piano - Released September 13, 2019 | Decca

Distinctions 5 de Diapason
The early recordings of a keyboard lioness, long unavailable and new to CDNot generally given to extravagant effusions, William Glock (Controller of Radio 3 and the BBC Proms in the 1970s) had no doubt: ‘There is no one who plays the piano better in the world than she does. There is no one with a more fantastic command of the piano … not over felt, not under-felt, nothing rushed just to show off and yet the greatest playing I’ve heard for years’. He was referring to the French pianist Cécile Ousset, whose career had belatedly sparked to life and international recognition with appearances across the UK and US and a new contract with EMI Records. Yet prior to this Ousset had made several recordings since her success in the late 1950s at several major European competitions. She accumulated a considerable catalogue on Eterna, the East German label, but then Ousset signed to make recordings with Sofrason, the Société Française du Son. These were licensed for wider release by the French arm of Decca, but Sofrason went out of business in 1981 and the recordings have never been reissued – until now. This new Eloquence set includes an appreciation of Ousset’s art by the French pianophile Jean-Charles Hoffélé. These ‘French Decca’ recordings all date from 1971–76, and they include much solo repertoire that Ousset never recorded again, though they share similar qualities with the much-acclaimed concerto recordings that she made in the 1980s: an unsentimental palette of rubato and tone-colour, a fearless and brilliant command of articulation, and a uniquely French mastery of jeu perlé. The first album made an imaginative and attractive compilation of fin-de-siècle Parisians from Saint-Saëns to Satie. The second displayed her particular affinity with the Russian post-Romantics, Rachmaninov and Prokofiev; and the third coupled two landmarks of German-Romantic piano literature, by Brahms and Schumann. These all received a later international LP issue on the ‘Ace of Diamonds’ imprint and to very warm reviews. However, Ousset’s last recordings from this period encompassed the complete variations of Beethoven, issued by French Decca in two volumes (a 3LP and a 2LP box). Its disappearance particularly dismayed Ousset herself: ‘I made a big effort on that one,’ she remarked in a 1984 interview, ‘and it came off beautifully’. (© Decca Music Group Limited / Universal Music Australia Pty Ltd.)
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Solo Piano - Released August 30, 2019 | Chandos

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The internationally renowned pianist Imogen Cooper is best known for her interpretations of composers of the classical and romantic eras, as reflected in her existing discography for Chandos, featuring works by Liszt, Wagner, Brahms, Chopin, Beethoven, and Robert and Clara Schumann. On her new album, she explores the links between more recent French and Spanish styles in a programme ranging from Albéniz to Mompou via Debussy, Ravel, and Falla. Informed by the pianist’s frequent visits to (and love for) Catalonia (homeland to Albéniz and Mompou) and the Basque region of southern France (birthplace of Ravel) these are performances filled with feeling and personality, as well (of course) as virtuosic playing of the highest order. © Chandos
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Solo Piano - Released July 5, 2019 | APR

Booklet Distinctions Gramophone Editor's Choice
Promotion Chandos June 2021 Promotion Argerich 2021 EN

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Chamber Music in the magazine