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A Chopin Diary: The Complete Nocturnes / Huangci

Release Date: 06/23/2017 
Label:  Berlin Classics   Catalog #: 300905  
Composer:  Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Claire HuangciTristan Cornut
Number of Discs: 2 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Claire Huangci proves herself to be a vividly expressive interpreter of Chopin, the first since Artur Rubinstein to offer a complete cycle of the Nocturnes by Frédéric Chopin. During her background research work into Chopin’s oeuvre she repeatedly came across poems by French authors such as Charles Baudelaire, Victor Hugo and Tristan Corbière. She began to form associations and found a poem contemporary to each of Chopin’s nocturnes. You will find the links between poetry and music in the booklet. Claire Huangci herself explains: “They may add a further dimension to your listening pleasure, so that everyone can conjure up an image of what I see as I play. I do hope that these lovely verses will act as an impetus to Read more allow listeners’ fantasy to take flight and to create their very own Chopin diary.” This approach is proof of Claire Huangci’s artistic maturity – an approach that will open up new avenues in our appreciation of Chopin. Frédéric Chopin was a special pioneer in Claire Huangci’s eyes. The child prodigy became acquainted with his works at a very young age and grew up with them. They were decisive to her personal development and artistic career, which took off at an early stage on an international level thanks to concert performances, arts grants and a host of awards. This resulted in a virtuoso life of short-distance and long-haul flights, juggling appearances at New York’s Carnegie Hall, Osaka’s Symphony Hall or the Gewandhaus in Leipzig with life at home in Philadelphia. She has played with a host of orchestras including the Radio Symphony Orchestra of Stuttgart, the China Philharmonic Orchestra, the Indianapolis Symphony and the Moscow Radio Symphony. Accompanying her on her journey, so to speak, were not just her teachers, such as Eleanur Sokoloff, Gary Graffman and Arie Vardi, but the composer Frédéric Chopin: she owes her artistic breakthrough to his music. Time and again she has analysed, documented and profiled Chopin. Claire Huangci has brought together all of this experience and these insights on her new album, forming them into a “Chopin Diary”. The Nocturnes are the epitome of Chopin’s artistic work. They attest to the composer’s emotions on the cusp of the Romantic era and are simultaneously evidence of a restless life that hung between his artistic popularity, his dire state of health and an uncertain future. Composed in an atmosphere of domestic security, as night fell, they reflect his stimulating artistic day-to-day life. They are deemed to be perfect in form, combining all stylistically defining moods in a virtuosic form that to this day is unsurpassed. Some of the total of 21 Nocturnes form part of the standard repertoire for young pianists, yet Claire Huangci’s approach to them is a highly personal, unique one: “With her differentiated agogic approach and superior technique, Claire Huangci proved that she is now the most expressive Chopin performer of her generation", according to Gerd Kurat of the Südkurier newspaper. She rounds off the program with the Nocturne Oubliée and the Etude in C sharp minor, recorded together with cellist Tristan Cornut. Read less

Works on This Recording

Nocturnes (3) for Piano, B 54/Op. 9 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Claire Huangci (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1830-1831; Poland 
Nocturnes (3) for Piano, Op. 15 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Claire Huangci (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1830-1833 
Nocturnes (2) for Piano, Op. 27 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Claire Huangci (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1835; Paris, France 
Nocturnes (2) for Piano, B 106/Op. 32 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Claire Huangci (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1836-1837; Paris, France 
Nocturnes (2) for Piano, Op. 37 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Claire Huangci (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1838-1849; Paris, France 
Nocturnes (2) for Piano, B 142/Op. 48 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Claire Huangci (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1841; Paris, France 
Nocturnes (2) for Piano, B 152/Op. 55 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Claire Huangci (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1843; Paris, France 
Nocturnes (2) for Piano, B 161/Op. 62 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Claire Huangci (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1846; Paris, France 
Nocturne for Piano in E minor, B 19/Op. 72 no 1 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Claire Huangci (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1827; Poland 
Nocturne for Piano in C sharp minor, B 49 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Claire Huangci (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1830; Poland 
Etudes (12) for Piano, Op. 25: no 7 in C sharp minor by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Claire Huangci (Piano), Tristan Cornut (Cello)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1836; Paris, France 

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 Sophisticated playing in a classic frame July 3, 2017 By Dean Frey See All My Reviews "Two things need to happen in a very good recording of Chopin's Nocturnes: the very well-known ones need to be played so they sound as fresh and un-hackneyed as possible, while the hidden gems (and there are many amongst the 20-some pieces) need to be polished up to shine enough to be noticed amongst this embarrassment of riches. Claire Huangci scores highly on both points; she's put together a marvellous 2 CD-set for Berlin Classics that's convincing on the first listen, with many special touches that you notice the second or third time around. In a perceptive review for Musicweb, Dominy Clements praises Huangci's rubato, which "almost seem(s) like two-part counterpoint in the independent character she gives between left and right (hand)." This is sophisticated playing, full of subtle effects and strongly etched character, but all within a fairly classic frame. Nothing is mannered or show-offy. Huangci adds two bonuses: the Nocturne Oubliée in C-Sharp Minor, and, along with cellist Tristan Cornu, the Étude in C-Sharp Minor for cello and piano." Report Abuse
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