Notes & Reviews:
The debut album of the Piano Duo Takahashi / Lehmann marks the beginning of the cooperation between the brilliant duo and audite. This and the following album, scheduled for release in spring 2015, explore the multifaceted cosmos of transcriptions for piano duet. The virtuoso pianists combine their passionate expressivity with an intellectual programmatic conception. Their equally intelligent and touching playing makes even seemingly abstract works accessible to the listener. In this recording, the musicians focus on three orchestral and ensemble masterpieces, arranged for piano duet by their own composers: Beethoven's compendium of the high art of composing; Schumann's regeneration of the symphony through the Romantic spirit; Schoenberg's shift to Modernism. These transcriptions come alive thanks to the suspense between the piano's own sound and the suggestion of colors which do not form part of the instrument's spectrum. Moreover, the more abstract sound reveals insights into the conception of the works which would otherwise remain hidden. The transcriptions demand and activate the listener's imagination - a virtue of all the works recorded here being the intensity of the Romantic "As If". The PianoDuo Takahashi Lehmann was founded in Berlin in 2009. The musicians perform in many European countries as well as in Korea and Japan. Norie Takahashi first came to prominence by winning awards at numerous competitions, including the International Beethoven Competitions in Bonn and Vienna, the Schubert Competition in Graz, the Leeds International Piano Competition and the Queen Elizabeth Competition in Brussels. After gaining a music diploma in Tokyo, she continued her studies with Klaus Hellwig at the Universitaet der Kuenste Berlin. She also received artistic inspiration from distinguished musicians such as Bruno Leonardo Gelber, Robert Levin, Ferenc Rados, Pascal Devoyon and Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau. Norie Takahashi appears as soloist and chamber musician in many European countries as well as in Asia. Bjoern Lehmann studied in Hamburg, Lausanne and at the Universitaet der Kuenste Berlin with Klaus Hellwig. He also received important artistic inspiration from Ferenc Rados, Leonard Hokanson, Robert Levin, Zoltan Kocsis, members of the Amadeus Quartet, Hartmut Hoell and Irwin Gage. In 2011 Bjoern Lehmann was made professor at the Universitaet der Kuenste Berlin. He regularly gives master classes and appears as soloist and chamber musician in Europe, Latin America and Asia.
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Frederic Mompou: Paisatges; Preludis; Souvenirs et al / Adolf Pla, piano
Chopin: Piano Trio, Op. 8; Joseph Elsner: Trio in B-flat / Trio Margaux
Saint-Saens: Piano Quartet, Op. 41; Chausson: Piano Quartet, Op. 30 / Schubert Ensemble
Franz Liszt: Transcriptions from Operas by Weber, Bellini, Erkel, Ernst Il von Sachsen-Coburg-Gotha / Han Chen, piano
Karol Szymanowski: Violin Concerto no 1; Myths, Chant de Roxane / Rosanne Philippens, violin; Nationaal Jeugd Orkest, Julien Quentin, piano
Friedrich Kulau: Piano Quartets Nos. 1 & 2 / Copenhagen Piano Quartet
Mendelssohn: Piano Concertos Opp. 25 & 40; Variations Serieuses, Op. 54 / James Johnson, piano; Royal PO; Freeman
Ralph Vaughan Williams; James MacMillan: Oboe Concertos / Nicholas Daniel, oboe; Britten Sinfonia; MacMillan
Antonio Vivaldi: L'Estro Armonico, 12 concertos for violin & strings / Rachel Podger, violin