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Martinu: Complete Piano Music Vol 1 / Giorgio Koukl


Release Date: 11/21/2006 
Label:  Naxos   Catalog #: 8557914   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Bohuslav Martinu
Performer:  Giorgio Koukl
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 0 Hours 57 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Most of the short cycles featured on the first volume in Naxos' complete Martinu piano music survey represent the composer's early style, where French effervescence, the Czech speech patterns of Janácek, and American jazz idioms delightfully collide. They're also pianistically effective and deserve more serious attention among young pianists looking to build interesting programs. Like his one-time teacher Rudolf Firkusny, pianist Giorgio Koukl always channels his considerable technique toward putting Martinu's message first. For example, a greenhorn virtuoso might easily be tempted to make the churning textures and motoric drive characterizing the Allegro vivo third movement of the Esquisses de Danses into a flashy toccata. However, Koukl's Read more steady moderation allows the melodies to truly sing--and even dance. His supple and debonair performances of the eight jazz-inspired Preludes favorably compare to Emil Leichner's relatively drier, leaner ones on Supraphon. Perhaps Leichner imbues Window on the Garden's more lyrical moments with a little more breathing room and tender inflection, but there's much to be said for Koukl's warmer, more colorful sonority, with upgraded sonics to match. Needless to say, I look forward to further volumes.

--Jed Distler, ClassicsToday.com Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Le noël, H 167 by Bohuslav Martinu
Performer:  Giorgio Koukl (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1927; Paris, France 
Length: 5 Minutes 30 Secs. 
Notes: RSI Studios, Lugano, Switzerland (04/19/2004); RSI Studios, Lugano, Switzerland (08/15/2004) 
2.
Esquisses (5) de danses for Piano, H 220 by Bohuslav Martinu
Performer:  Giorgio Koukl (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1932 
Length: 10 Minutes 26 Secs. 
Notes: RSI Studios, Lugano, Switzerland (04/19/2004); RSI Studios, Lugano, Switzerland (08/15/2004) 
3.
Preludes (8) for Piano by Bohuslav Martinu
Performer:  Giorgio Koukl (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1929; France 
Length: 17 Minutes 37 Secs. 
Notes: RSI Studios, Lugano, Switzerland (04/19/2004); RSI Studios, Lugano, Switzerland (08/15/2004) 
4.
Window onto the Garden, H 270 by Bohuslav Martinu
Performer:  Giorgio Koukl (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1938; Paris, France 
Length: 8 Minutes 3 Secs. 
Notes: RSI Studios, Lugano, Switzerland (04/19/2004); RSI Studios, Lugano, Switzerland (08/15/2004) 
5.
Fables, H 138 by Bohuslav Martinu
Performer:  Giorgio Koukl (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1924; Paris, France 
Length: 7 Minutes 12 Secs. 
Notes: RSI Studios, Lugano, Switzerland (04/19/2004); RSI Studios, Lugano, Switzerland (08/15/2004) 
6.
Sketches (3) on modern dances for Piano by Bohuslav Martinu
Performer:  Giorgio Koukl (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1927; France 
Length: 5 Minutes 42 Secs. 
Notes: RSI Studios, Lugano, Switzerland (04/19/2004); RSI Studios, Lugano, Switzerland (08/15/2004) 
7.
Foxtrot, H 126 by Bohuslav Martinu
Performer:  Giorgio Koukl (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1920; Bohemia 
Length: 2 Minutes 40 Secs. 
Notes: RSI Studios, Lugano, Switzerland (04/19/2004); RSI Studios, Lugano, Switzerland (08/15/2004) 

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