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Reflections - Ravel, Decaux, Schonberg / Frederic Chiu

Chiu
Release Date: 02/14/2012 
Label:  Harmonia Mundi   Catalog #: 1957166  
Composer:  Maurice RavelArnold SchoenbergAbel Decaux
Performer:  Frederic Chiu
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 7 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Here is something special; a programme of 'reflections', of parallels rather than incongruities performed with rare elegance and finesse. For Frederic Chiu Debussy and Ravel, Schoenberg, Berg and Webern all "found ther initial élan from the universal search for the post-Wagnerian aspirin". Abel Decaux (1869-1943), whose Clairs de haw predate Ravel's Miroirs, also fall within this category and his most intriguing modernity makes his presence in such company apt rather than arbitrary. Less academically, his "La ruelle" is an alley few would choose to visit after dark, and his "Le cimetiere" is a sombre place indeed. Despite several technical relationships with Miroirs such bleakness is a far cry from that Read more piece, where Ravel's expressionist writing reaches its height and finds its outlet in a dazzling interplay of night and day, or brightness and shadows. Chiu's "Noctuelles" are as light-winged as any on record, truly tres kger and worlds away from, say, Casadesus's classic French literalism (CBS, 12/54) or Cecile Ousset's robust account (EMI, 1/91). His "Une barque sur l'ocean", too, has an authentically Ravelian sense of luxe, calme et voluptè, a Mediterranean marine-scape, dancing with pin-points of light — a magical evocation. Guitars twang and castanets snap with precision and aplomb (despite an uncharacteristic mis-hit at the end) in "Alborada", and in the central plus lent the clowning dissolves into a most subtly perceived sense of reverie.

In the first of Schoenberg's Drei Klavierstiicke, Chiu makes us specially aware of how the flickering half lights of Ravel's "Noctuelles" are reincarnated in a still-familiar form, and throughout all three pieces his playing is scrupulously sensitive and controlled. These recordings beautifully capture his delicate and precise sonority; anyone with an ear for the enterprising, intelligently planned and superbly played should investigate.

– Gramophone [1/1996], reviewing the original release
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Works on This Recording

1.
Miroirs by Maurice Ravel
Performer:  Frederic Chiu (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1904-1905; France 
Date of Recording: 10/1994 
Venue:  Skywalker Sound Studios, Nicasio, CA 
Length: 30 Minutes 15 Secs. 
2.
Pieces (3) for Piano, Op. 11 by Arnold Schoenberg
Performer:  Frederic Chiu (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1909; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 10/1994 
Venue:  Skywalker Sound Studios, Nicasio, CA 
Length: 14 Minutes 44 Secs. 
3.
Clairs de lune: no 1, Minuit passe by Abel Decaux
Performer:  Frederic Chiu (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1900-1907; France 
Date of Recording: 10/1994 
Venue:  Skywalker Sound Studios, Nicasio, CA 
Length: 4 Minutes 59 Secs. 
4.
Clairs de lune: no 2, La ruelle by Abel Decaux
Performer:  Frederic Chiu (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: France 
Date of Recording: 10/1994 
Venue:  Skywalker Sound Studios, Nicasio, CA 
Length: 4 Minutes 39 Secs. 
5.
Clairs de lune: no 3, Le cimetière by Abel Decaux
Performer:  Frederic Chiu (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: France 
Date of Recording: 10/1994 
Venue:  Skywalker Sound Studios, Nicasio, CA 
Length: 6 Minutes 19 Secs. 
6.
Clairs de lune: no 4, La mer by Abel Decaux
Performer:  Frederic Chiu (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1900-1907; France 
Date of Recording: 10/1994 
Venue:  Skywalker Sound Studios, Nicasio, CA 
Length: 5 Minutes 18 Secs. 

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 Turn up the volume May 18, 2013 By Dr. Mitchell Gurk (Spencer, MA) See All My Reviews ". . . for this delicately thoughtfully played and recorded(often ppp), exquisitely beautiful recital. This was proof enough to order more of Chiu's recordings: same superlative quality." Report Abuse
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