Classical Music Home

The World's Leading Classical Music Group

Email Password  
Not a subscriber yet?
Keyword Search
in
 
 Classical Music Home > Naxos Album Reviews

Album Reviews



 
See latest reviews of other albums...


David Hurwitz
ClassicsToday.com, August 2011

Does anyone need 71 minutes of Chinese recorder concertos? On evidence here, the answer is “yes”. This is beautiful music, often astoundingly so. Sure, there’s a touch of film music glitter to Tang Jianping’s Flying Song, and Ma Shui-long’s Bamboo Flute Concerto starts with the somewhat oxymoronic designation “Andante Grandioso”, but so what? Both Bright Sheng’s and Chen Yi’s works effortlessly integrate a more contemporary musical syntax with traditional Chinese idioms, and the music works perfectly—intriguing, beguiling, and full of character. It also goes without saying that Michala Petri has no peer today as a master of her instrument, and she wrings more color and expressive intensity from the recorder than you ever believed possible. Toss in fine accompaniments and outstanding engineering, and the result is an absolute joy from start to finish.



Todd Gorman
American Record Guide, January 2011

Here we have today’s foremost recorder soloist in four major contemporary pieces, with a very capable Chinese-born conductor at the helm. The performances are laden with vitality and splendor. Everyone seems to be giving 110%. The impression this creates is due in part to extraordinary sound. As for Petri’s playing, pick the superlatives of your choice; they should all apply.

To read the complete review, please visit American Record Guide online.



Ken Smith
Gramophone, January 2011

Eastern works for flutes transcribe admirably for Western recorder.

The title is a bit of a stretch, since only Chen Yi’s The Ancient Chinese Beauty (2008) was actually composed for recorder (in this case for Michala Petri herself) Bright Sheng’s Flute Moon (1999) was originally written for Western flute, while Ma Shui-Long’s Bamboo Flute Concerto (1984) and Tang Jianping’s Fei Ge (2002) were composed respectively for the hampi and dizi, two different styles of Chinese transverse flutes. That said, the recorder is probably the only instrument with both the Western tuning and woody timbre to bridge the gab, and Petri proves to be a brilliant cultural negotiator in her own right.

Tang, the head of the composition department at China’s Central Conservatory, offers a rousing opener, ostensibly inspired by Miao singing styles but often sounding more like a cross between Copland’s prairie music and Elmer Bernstein’s film scores. Sheng’s Flute Moon marks a clear departure from his earlier works, the unrelenting aggression of H’un (“Lacerations”) now giving way to unapologetic lyricism. Chen, unsurprisingly, reaches a wholly different level, with a range of emotional states and contrasting playing techniques that fits Petri’s instrument and personal playing style with bespoken elegance.

The composers from People’s Republic stand in stark contrast to Taiwan-born Ma, who was an established composer when his younger colleagues were picking rice in the Cultural Revolution. His Bamboo Flute Concerto (1984) may not have Chen’s emotional breadth or Sheng’s orchestrational brilliance but its pioneering fusion of Chinese sonority and Western form radiates with a thrill of discovery that practically percolates off the page.



Rick Anderson
Baker & Taylor CD Hotlist, January 2011

This is the third installment in the series Dialogue – East Meets West, which recorder virtuoso Michala Petri inaugurated with her husband on their own record label to facilitate musical exchanges between China and the West. This disc features four recorder concertos by Chinese, Chinese-American, and Taiwanese composers with Petri as soloist. The playing is thrilling; the pieces themselves are all very good, with varying levels of chromaticism and varying blends of European and Asian melodic influences. Petri’s recorder is, as always, a joy to hear.



Raymond Tuttle
Fanfare, January 2011

Once a busy recording artist for Philips and RCA Red Seal, Danish virtuoso Michala Petri (with guitarist and lutenist Lars Hannibal) launched her own label in 2006. This is OUR Recordings’s 13th release, and the third in its Dialogue—East Meets West series. This collection of Chinese recorder concertos is, to enlist a perhaps overused word, delightful, and deserves to be brought to the attention of a broad audience.

If you don’t believe me, try the opening work by Tang Jianping, who was born in 1955. The title’s English translation is Flying Song, a reference to a style of folk singing indigenous to a region of southwest China. As a courtship song intended to be projected over long distances, it must be both penetrating and appealing—think of the songs from the Auvergne region set by Joseph Canteloube. With its rich scoring and tunefulness, Fei Ge also seems to be motivated by the same forces that led George Enescu to compose his two Romanian Rhapsodies. The languages are very different, of course, but the impact is quite similar. This will go to the top of my list of musical pick-me-ups. Tang Jianping composed this work for bamboo flute and a ensemble of various Asian instruments; the arrangement for Western instruments performed here is the composer’s own.

Bright Sheng and Chen Yi are more familiar to Western listeners. The first movement of the former’s Flute Moon (“Chi Lin’s Dance”) is an athletic and often thunderous toccata in which the dancing of the mythical Chinese unicorn or “dragon horse” is evoked. The combination of the piping recorder with the heavy stamping of the orchestra creates an effect that is both bizarre and beguiling. The atmospheric second movement (also titled “Flute Moon”) is based on a classical melody dating from the Song Dynasty. After a tensely quiet opening, the movement erupts with dramatic gestures and a strong melodic profile, and then returns to the opening mood. Chen Yi currently teaches at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. The Ancient Chinese Beauty was composed specifically for Michala Petri, who premiered it in Beijing in 2008. Its language is more difficult, and what grabs the ear most, at least initially, is the composer’s employment and combining of instrumental timbres in much the same way that an abstract painter uses a variety of paints and brushes. The three movements are “The Clay Figurines,” “The Ancient Totems,” and “The Dancing Ink.” Less than 15 minutes long, The Ancient Chinese Beauty is just the right length for its materials. The tenor recorder is used in the middle movement, and the alto recorder in the first and third. The third movement is an exciting moto perpetuo characterized by the composer’s insistent use of repeated notes.

The Bamboo Flute Concerto by Ma Shui-Long (b.1939) blends traditional Western gestures—particularly those associated with the genre of the romantic concerto—with melodies in a traditional Chinese style. As the title suggests, Ma composed it for the bang di, but of course here it is performed on a recorder—a sopranino, unless I am mistaken. It is not a very adventurous concerto, but it is appealing, and it is an appropriate foil for the works by Bright Sheng and Chen Yi that frame it.

Michala Petri recently turned 50 and shows no signs of relinquishing her enthusiastic yet serene mastery over her instruments of choice. She plays all of these works, not just The Ancient Chinese Beauty, as if they were composed just for her. If anyone still doubts the recorder’s place as an instrument worthy of the same attention as its cousin the flute, Petri’s playing here should put that to rest. The Copenhagen Philharmonic accompanies her idiomatically, and with sensitivity to this music’s many shapes and colors. Kudos to Lan Shui, its chief conductor since 2007, for making this happen. Finally, the booklet notes (in English and Chinese) thoughtfully guide one through the program, and the SACD technology makes a spectacular noise, from the recorder’s most piercing upper registers to the granitic power of the orchestra’s lowest notes.

This is Want List material.



Mark Sealey
Classical Net, December 2010

Something a little different: two CDs from Rhymoi Music and one from OUR Recordings featuring Chinese classical music. To listen carefully to the three hours of music on these beautifully-produced CDs is to be aware of as many similarities between certain Western traditions and the wind, string, vocal music respectively of Chinese Recorder Concertos, Masterpieces of the Chinese Qin from the Tang Dynasty to Today and Dream of An Opera I & II as of the differences. A spareness and distillation of content in the service of focused communication is common both to the recorder and qin (zither) as well as the solo works from the medieval and modern periods to say the least. Concern for spectacle is common to many operatic and choral traditions. An emphasis on introversion exposed in the interests less of bravura than of expressivity can be found both in the Western Romantic Lieder repertoire and several of the genres represented here by Meng Qinghua and Zhao Jiazhen—not to mention the lais of France of the middle ages and even the solo piano music of Beethoven and Schubert. Yet it is neither necessary nor appropriate to evaluate the music from three very different Chinese musical cultures in terms of Western music. But if you’re totally unfamiliar with their idioms, such comparisons might be good grounding posts at which to start.

Michala Petri plays recorder in four modern concerti with The Copenhagen Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Lan Shui. Fei Ge (“Flying Song”) by Tang Jianping, who was born in 1955 contains much beautiful and atmospheric music with many Western orchestral techniques, though has the aura at times of film music. The best known of these composer is Bright Sheng (b.1955), who has has lived in the United States since 1982 and is a member of the faculty at the University of Michigan. His Flute Moon is in two movements and driven by dance rhythms and Stravinskyan insistence on forward movement.

More conventionally Chinese-sounding are the two works, the “Bamboo Flute Concerto” by the oldest of the composers represented here, Ma Shui-long (born in 1939) and “The Ancient Chinese Beauty” by Chen Yi (the only woman composer, born in 1953 and a classmate of Bright Sheng at the Beijing Central Conservatory in the late 1970s after the end of the Cultural Revolution). In all cases the playing of Petri is impeccable, though she is not recorded so closely as to afford us a clear hearing of all the nuances written for the recorder. That’s a pity. The orchestration, skillful though it is, swamps the recorder, especially in the louder passages. At times—in the work by Tang Jianping, in particular—there is little except some vaguely modal writing and an emphasis on the more plangent tones of which the solo instrument is capable to suggest a thoroughly Chinese métier. But this should not be seen as a drawback: the composers’ aims were specifically to blend Eastern and Western traditions, using melodies and musical theories from China with techniques of orchestration and instrumentation from the West. To that end this CD can be taken very much at face value and not necessarily as an entrée into to Chinese music. This CD does consciously represent a push to make the traditions of the older musical culture available and enjoyable to Western audiences. The recorder’s gentle and expressive qualities and sound approach so closely the natural breath rhythms of human beings (listen to the slower passages in Flute Moon [tr.5], for example). So it’s well-placed to convey the essence of this world. And all the more so when in Petri’s hands.



Alison Melville
The WholeNote, December 2010

This remarkable CD presents the premiere recordings of four concertos by living Chinese composers, two of whom currently work in the USA. The disc opens with Tian Jianping’s Fei Ge (Flying Song), originally written in 2002 as a concerto for dizi (Chinese bamboo flute) and pan-Asian instrumental ensemble. This transcription by the composer for western orchestra and recorder, on which Petri eloquently evokes the dizi in tone and effect, works beautifully with playing of the highest order from both orchestra and soloist.

Bright Sheng’s evocative and strikingly beautiful Flute Moon is more a full orchestral work than a concerto, and Petri plays solo parts originally assigned to the flute and piccolo. The piece revels in a rich array of orchestral colours, dazzling musical gestures, and dramatic shifts of mood. The three-movement Bang Di Concerto by Ma Shui-long is the composer’s best known composition, and is an extraordinarily effective fusion between Chinese and western musical languages. It receives an utterly virtuosic performance from all involved. Written for Petri by Chen Yi, The Ancient Chinese Beauty draws inspiration from Chinese figures, script, and flutes. The second movement, particularly in its evocation of the ancient xun or large Chinese ocarina, is particularly impressive.

For several decades now Michala Petri has been one of the busiest and most familiar recorder players to audiences around the globe, and with programs such as this she continues to do great things beyond the recorder’s more typical boundaries. She seems eminently at home here, making her own distinct music in a fascinating project designed “to creatively collaborate in an international musical dialogue.”

Kudos to her, to the wonderful Copenhagen Philharmonic and conductor Lan Shui—and to the composers of these wonderful pieces.




Michael Church
BBC Music Magazine, December 2010

This is not the first Chinese collaboration by the Danish recorder virtuoso Michala Petri, but it's the most interesting yet. Inspired by their country's rich variety of flute traditions, these four concertos reflect the way China's composers are melding their musical heritage with the symphonic one of Western Europe and America. And they also reflect the thoroughness with which Chinese composers have transcended the privations of those terrible years when they were condemned to hard labour in the countryside.

Tang Jianping's Fei Ge draws on the folk music of the Hmong, but has at times a confident, almost Broadway lushness of sound; Sheng's Flute Moon calls on all Petri`s virtuosity, plus that of the Danish orchestra's piccolo player; Ma Shui-Long' Bamboo Flute Concerto is initially relentlessly cheerful, before moving into a graceful echo of 20th-century English pastoralism. The three movements of Chen Yi's The Ancient Chinese Beauty – the most original of those works – use Petri's three recorders to reflect the respective timbres and tone-colours of three very different Chinese flutes. Each of these works has its own charm, each will help to build China's still-evolving indigenous symphonic tradition.



James Manheim
Allmusic.com, November 2010

The contents of this album are less unusual than the proclaimed Chinese recorder concertos concept. Only one of the four works, Chen Yi's The Ancient Chinese Beauty, is originally written for recorders; the others are arranged from music for Chinese flutes (or, in the case of Bright Sheng's Flute Moon, Western piccolo). Sheng and Chen Yi are partly Western-trained, and their pieces arose in an American context. This said, veteran recorder virtuosa Michala Petri, recording in her home country of Denmark with the Copenhagen Philharmonic under Chinese-Singaporean conductor Lan Shui, delivers a bravura performance here. Chen Yi writes difficult registral jumps for Petri, but elsewhere, as in the low oscillations of the finale of Tang Jianping's Fei Ge (Flying Song), one gets the feeling that Petri has pushed the recorder into new tonguings as she imitates the Chinese dizi bamboo flute. The presence of the Tang Jianping work points to another of the album's strengths: its diverse program. There is a work in the Chinese style familiar to listeners of the Mao Zedong era; Bang di concerto composer Ma Shui-Long is Taiwanese, but as the excellent booklet notes (in English and Chinese, but not Danish) indicate, the official Taiwanese style of that time, intended to provide a counterweight to the Yellow River Concerto being promoted by the mainland government, ended up being similar to it in many ways, because official styles are official styles. This concerto, originally written for the bang di small membrane flute, marked the beginnings of his move away from this style. The biggest find is the Tang Jianping piece, an eventful, kaleidoscopic piece drawing on a variety of Chinese folk traditions and expertly handling the Western orchestra (it was originally composed for a Chinese ensemble but arranged by the composer). The program is truly a "Chinese fugue in four voices," as the booklet proclaims, and mention should be made of the unusually elaborate and nicely edited booklet, complete with Chinese seals. A strong outing from Denmark's new OUR Recordings label, and it is to be hoped that the label will enter the field of cross-cultural repertory that has so far been left mostly to the Netherlands label Channel Classics.



Raymond Tuttle
Fanfare, November 2010

Once a busy recording artist for Philips and RCA Red Seal, Danish virtuoso Michala Petri (with guitarist and lutenist Lars Hannibal) launched her own label in 2006. This is OUR Recordings’s 13th release, and the third in its “Dialogue—East Meets West” series. This collection of “Chinese Recorder Concertos” is, to enlist a perhaps overused word, delightful, and deserves to be brought to the attention of a broad audience.

If you don’t believe me, try the opening work by Tang Jianping, who was born in 1955. The title’s English translation is “Flying Song,” a reference to a style of folk singing indigenous to a region of southwest China. As a courtship song intended to be projected over long distances, it must be both penetrating and appealing—think of the songs from the Auvergne region set by Joseph Canteloube. With its rich scoring and tunefulness, Fei Ge also seems to be motivated by the same forces that led George Enescu to compose his two Romanian Rhapsodies. The languages are very different, of course, but the impact is quite similar. This will go to the top of my list of musical pick-me-ups. Tang Jianping originally composed this work for bamboo flute and a ensemble of various Asian instruments. The arrangement for Western instruments performed here is the composer’s own.

Bright Sheng and Chen Yi are more familiar to Western listeners. The first movement of the former’s Flute Moon (“Chi Lin’s Dance”) is an athletic and often thunderous toccata in which the dancing of the mythical Chinese unicorn or “dragon horse” is evoked. The combination of the piping recorder with the heavy stamping of the orchestra creates an effect that is both bizarre and beguiling. The atmospheric second movement (also titled “Flute Moon”) is based on a classical melody dating from the Song Dynasty. After a tensely quiet opening, the movement erupts with dramatic gestures and a strong melodic profile, and then returns to the opening mood. Chen Yi currently teaches at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. The Ancient Chinese Beauty was composed specifically for Michala Petri, who premiered it in Beijing in 2008. Its language is more difficult, and what grabs the ear most, at least initially, is the composer’s employment and combining of instrumental timbres in much the same way that an abstract painter uses a variety of paints and brushes. The three movements are “The Clay Figurines,” “The Ancient Totems,” and “The Dancing Ink.” Less than 15 minutes long, The Ancient Chinese Beauty is just the right length for its materials. The tenor recorder is used in the middle movement, and the alto recorder in the first and third. The third movement is an exciting moto perpetuo characterized by the composer’s insistent use of repeated notes.

The Bamboo Flute Concerto by Ma Shui-Long (b. 1939) blends traditional Western gestures—particularly those associated with the genre of the Romantic concerto—with melodies in a traditional Chinese style. As the title suggests, Ma composed it for the bang di, but of course here it is performed on a recorder—a sopranino, unless I am mistaken. It is not a very adventurous concerto, but it is appealing, and it is an appropriate foil for the works by Bright Sheng and Chen Yi that frame it.

Michala Petri recently turned 50 and shows no signs of relinquishing her enthusiastic yet serene mastery over her instruments of choice. She plays all of these works, not just The Ancient Chinese Beauty, as if they were composed just for her. If anyone still doubts the recorder’s place as an instrument worthy of the same attention as its cousin the flute, Petri’s playing here should put that to rest. The Copenhagen Philharmonic accompanies her idiomatically, and with sensitivity to this music’s many shapes and colors. Kudos to Lan Shui, its chief conductor since 2007, for making this happen. Finally, the booklet notes (in English and Chinese) thoughtfully guide one through the program, and the SACD technology makes a spectacular noise, from the recorder’s most piercing upper registers to the granitic power of the orchestra’s lowest notes.

This is Want List material.



Robert Benson
ClassicalCDReview.com, November 2010

Michala Petri (b. 1958) began playing the recorder when only three years old and went on to become the world’s leading performer on the instrument. Her numerous recordings of standard repertory were staples for collectors decades ago and many are still in the catalog. She also has a keen interest in contemporary music and has commissioned many works. This splendid Da Capo issue offers music by four contemporary Chinese composers. These are not miniatures; they are substantial evocative showpieces for soloist and orchestra. Tang Jianping (b. 1955) wrote his three-movement Flying Song for the Chinese dizi (bamboo flute) accompanied by a Pan-Asian ensemble, heard here in a version with western orchestra. China’s best-known composer, Bright Sheng (1955), wrote his Flute Moon on a commission from the Houston Symphony which gave the premiere in 1999 with Christopher Eschenbach on the podium. This music was inspired by Chi Lin, the Chinese unicorn also known as the "dragon horse." The two movements (Chi Lin’s Dance/Flute Moon) are a virtuoso display for the solo piccolo which is often accompanied by dynamic percussive orchestral outbursts. Ma Sui-long (b. 1939) wrote his best-known composition for the Chinese dizi (bamboo flute), an instrument with a rather piercing sound because of an extra hole covered with a membrane. The music successfully fuses eastern and western music. Chen Yi (b. 1953) was the first woman in China to receive a master’s degree in composition. Since then, she has received many awards both for her music and her teaching. The Ancient Chinese Beauty has three movements inspired by ancient Chinese totems and clay figurines written to showcase Petri’s instruments. It was premiered in April 2008 in Beijing to celebrate the 60th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Denmark and the People’s Republic of China. All of these performances were recorded in Copenhagen’s Royal Danish Academy of Music in April 2010 and must be considered definitive. Audio quality is outstanding. A terrific release!



Roger Firman
Braille Magazine, November 2010

This is the Third Instalment of “Dialogue – East Meets West” series. Chinese Recorder Concertos offers four contemporary works by Chinese, Chinese-American and Taiwanese composers. The diversity of material includes: richly scored folk-inspired; fluid pentatonic romanticism; re-interpretations of Ancient China. The technical demands are considerable and those with an interest in Chinese music and the recorder may well wish to experience a fusion of cultures.



Martin Andersson
Klassisk, November 2010

The Our Recordings CD of four recorder concertos by Chinese composers is more of a halfway house. The concerto Flying Song (2002) by Tang Jianping (född 1955) is bright and energetic, martial and dance-like as required, but with moments of introspection. I see from Joshua Cheek’s highly informative (necessarily so!) booklet notes that Tang writes film music as well as in almost every other genre; this concerto suggests his film scores must be extremely effective. Bright Sheng’s Flute Moon (1999) is in two movements: a driving toccata representing a huge ‘dragon horse’ in Chinese mythology and the second an angular and vigorous elaboration of a melody from c. 1200. The good-natured and attractive Bamboo Flute Concerto (1984) by Ma Shui-Long (född 1939) has become something of a classic: written for dizi, or soprano bamboo flute, it accommodates Chinese melodic material within the framework of a western concerto – and there’s a ‘western’ flavour in another sense, since there’s more than a hint of Hollywood in Ma’s scoring; the grandiose peroration of the slow movement is wonderful. The Ancient Chinese Beauty (2008) by Chen Yi (född 1953) is a step or two on from Bartók, with astringent, mildly dissonant folk-based harmonies and insistent, almost minimalist rhythms. Here, too, the idea is almost more interesting than the music: all four pieces are relatively lightweight in terms of their musical content – it will need a real heavyweight of a composer to come along and crunch west and east together in an individual language before this kind of cross-fertilisation sounds natural. Michala Petri’s performances are nonetheless breath-taking (literally, I suppose), and she gets fine supports from her Danish compatriots under Lan Shui.




John Sunier
Audiophile Audition, October 2010

Michala Petri may be the top classical recorder virtuoso in the world. She has made many recordings for RCA and EMI in the past and in 2006 formed with guitarist Lars Hannibal her own record label, OUR Recordings. She has an amazing repertory, ranging from early music to the contemporary music world, and a number of commissioned works especially for her performance. She has performed with other classical guitarists as well as Hannibal. Conductor Shui is with both the Singapore Symphony Orchestra and also the Copenhagen Philharmonic. As with some other artists who have launched their own labels, Petri believes in offering the highest fidelity to those who appreciate it, and therefore this release is a hybrid SACD.

All four recorder concertos are fascinating, most enjoyable, and quite different from one another. The three-part Fei Ge is translated Flying Song, and it was originally created for the Chinese bamboo flute accompanied by a Pan-Asian group of instruments. The composer rearranged it for recorder and western orchestra. The title comes from the melodies of the improvisatory opening section being reminiscent of some Chinese Flying Songs. Flute Moon, by well-known Chinese composer Bright Sheng, was a commission of the Houston Symphony Orchestra. Its inspiration came from the Chinese unicorn, which is also known as the “dragon horse.” The first and shorter of the two movements is in a Stravinskian style. The second movement is based on an art song by a Song Dynasty poet and composer.

The Bamboo Flute Concerto, also known as the Bang Di Concerto, is the best-known composition of Chen Yi, and a successful musical synthesis of East and West. The Bang Di is the sopranino member of a family of Chinese flutes which have an extra hole drilled in the flute body, covered by a square piece of bamboo membrane to add resonance and amplify the flute’s sound. Though the melodies often come from Chinese folk music, the composer has followed the conventions of the western classical concerto. I found these three-movement concerto less tonal and melodic than the other three.

The closing concerto is a lovely work inspired by various elements of Chinese culture, including Han Dynasty clay figurines, ancient totems, and the script style of the Tang Dynasty. She specifies the use of the alto recorder for the first and third movements and the tenor recorder for the second movement. The tenor is intended to invoke the sounds of both the large bamboo flute and the Xun, an ocarina-type of instrument. The wide-range frequency spectrum of the excellent SACD surround preserves the often extended and expressive highest timbres of the various recorders, which are beautifully set off against the orchestra.




Jill Kemp
MUSO, September 2010

This excellent album is the third release in OUR Recordings “Dialogue-East meets West” project and features concertos by four Chinese, Chinese-American and Taiwanese composers. The variety of tonal colours and textures that Michala Petri and the Copenhagen Symphony Orchestra coax from their instruments is spectacular. There is great energy in these performances, and the balance between the soloist and the orchestra is spot on.

Petri uses newly designed Mollenhauer and Moeck Ehlert recorders, which project well and are therefore never overpowered, even in the percussive orchestral passages. The works themselves are so well constructed that the recorder soars effortlessly out from the rich textures.The influence of the dizi or bambooflutes, for which some of the concerts were originally scored, is clear. While Petri uses special techniques including glissandi, flutter tonging and different kinds of vibrato to emulate the Chinese instruments, she also makes the concertos very firmly the recorder’s own.

Tang Jianping’s “Feige” sounds almost like a film score, particularly in the second movement’s emotionally charged tenor recorder parts, the cadenza of Ma Shui-Long’s “Bamboo Flute Concerto”, meanwhile, showcases Petri’s celebrated virtuosity. Perhaps the most evocative work, however, is by Chen Yi. “The Ancient Chinese Beauty” is a fascinating piece with great contrasts and wonderful interplay between the recorder and the orchestra.



Peter Grahame Woolf
Musical Pointers, September 2010

All these items are of important musico-historical interest.

Each of the composers, born in 1939 and the ’50s respectively, suffered under the ravages of Mao’s CUltural Revolution, and their various rapprochments with the West are certainly worth hearing from that perspective.

But the only woman composer amongst them, Chen Yi, who studied composition at Columbia University and became a professor of composition at the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music and Dance, is the one whose concerto (and other music of hers) would likely find a welcome place on the European concert scene.

The performances, recording and background information are all splendid and, with those caveats, the disc is to be warmly welcomed.



Classical Music, September 2010

Today’s composers in China are achieving east-west fusion with none of the formalism of previous decades. From the wild melange of rock,jazz and classical in Tang Jianping’s “Feige” to the finely crafted classicism of Chen Yi’s “The Ancient Chinese Beauty”, individuality and energy abound. Even 71-year-old Ma Shui-Long’s “Bamboo Flute Concerto” deftly mixes traditional Chinese and western traditions with a sense of freshness. All four works make demands on virtuosity that few other than Petri could meet.






Famous Composers Quick Link:
Bach | Beethoven | Chopin | Dowland | Handel | Haydn | Mozart | Glazunov | Schumann | R Strauss | Vivaldi
4:00:38 PM, 31 July 2014
All Naxos Historical, Naxos Classical Archives, Naxos Jazz, Folk and Rock Legends and Naxos Nostalgia titles are not available in the United States and some titles may not be available in Australia and Singapore because these countries have copyright laws that provide or may provide for terms of protection for sound recordings that differ from the rest of the world.
Copyright © 2014 Naxos Digital Services Ltd. All rights reserved.     Terms of Use     Privacy Policy
-208-
Classical Music Home
NOTICE: This site was unavailable for several hours on Saturday, June 25th 2011 due to some unexpected but essential maintenance work. We apologize for any inconvenience.