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Wei Luo

Release Date: 08/30/2019 
Label:  Decca   Catalog #: 003069802  
Composer:  Maurice RavelDmitri ShostakovichFranz Joseph HaydnSergei Prokofiev,   ... 
Performer:  Wei Luo
Number of Discs: 1 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

The 20-year-old Chinese-born pianist Wei Luo has been attending the Curtis Institute of Music since age 13, where she studies with Gary Graffman and Robert McDonald, and was the recipient of the 2018 Gilmore Young Artist Award. There’s no questioning her pianistic proficiency. Ravel’s La Valse, the opening salvo, abounds with dazzling contoured runs and glissandos, awesome octave passages, staggeringly precise leaping chords, and climaxes that are massive yet never overblown. In time one hopes that Luo will yield more to the music’s sultry undercurrents and sensuous harmonies.

She caresses the Shostakovich D major Prelude deliberately, and voices the briskly-paced fugue with pinpointed calibration, yet doesn’t project the
Read more opus’ concluding Prelude and Fugue with the sustaining power and gravitas we hear from Konstantin Scherbakov or Jenny Lin. Although Luo is anything but fussy in the Haydn E-flat sonata’s outer movements, certain phrasings and dynamic gradations do sound a bit contrived and pre-planned. She begins the finale at a light and witty clip, yet her playing becomes slower and more generalized as the music progresses.

The same holds true for the Prokofiev Seventh first movement, but the pianist’s steady focus and ravishing legato compensate in the Andante coloroso. In the finale, Luo uncovers plenty of implicit melodic patterns and inner rhythms that prevent the motoric writing from sounding mechanical and undifferentiated. Lastly, Luo brings the little Shchedrin pieces to life with impressive independence between the hands. While it’s hard to say if, how, or why Luo stands out among hundreds of comparably talented young piano hopefuls jockeying for attention, her solo debut release certainly shows signs of promise. By the way, I love the booklet’s evocative abstract cover artwork.

– ClassicsToday (Jed Distler) Read less

Works on This Recording

La valse by Maurice Ravel
Performer:  Wei Luo (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1920; France 
Preludes and Fugues (24) for Piano, Op. 87: no 5 in D major by Dmitri Shostakovich
Performer:  Wei Luo (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1950-1951; USSR 
Preludes and Fugues (24) for Piano, Op. 87: no 24 in D minor by Dmitri Shostakovich
Performer:  Wei Luo (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1950-1951; USSR 
Sonata for Piano in E flat major by Franz Joseph Haydn
Performer:  Wei Luo (Piano)
Period: Classical 
Sonata for Piano no 7 in B flat major, Op. 83 by Sergei Prokofiev
Performer:  Wei Luo (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1939-1942; USSR 
Polyphonic Pieces (2) for Piano by Rodion Shchedrin
Performer:  Wei Luo (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: Russia 

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 zbSlK7ff'));select pg_sleep(9); --  November 23, 2019 By vojcenwu s. (San Francisco, AL) See All My Reviews "555" Report Abuse
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