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Sang Woo Kang
American Record Guide, September 2015

Yu’s treatment of these works reveals sensitivity and conviction, musicality rather than merely raw virtuosity. His Naxos debut of these Schubert transcriptions respects the original melodies with astounding attention to Liszt’s details. An enjoyable recording. © 2015 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide

Jeremy Nicholas
Gramophone, July 2015

There is much delightful playing here, not least a heartfelt ‘Ständchen’ and a notably jaunty ‘Abschied’, which makes one want to hear more of this promising young artist. © 2015 Gramophone Read complete review on Gramophone

Jed Distler, June 2015

Liszt’s lavish filigree may sound a little overloaded by purist standards, yet he always treats the melodies with respect and intelligent registral deployment. Many young virtuosos plow through these transcriptions with little indication that they know the original songs. Avan Yu, however, brilliantly reconciles Schubert’s melodic trajectory with Liszt’s intricate textures. © 2015 Read complete review

Barry Forshaw
Classical CD Choice, May 2015

More cherishable rarities from Naxos—with a disc calculated to appeal to lovers of both Liszt and Schubert. Liszt had a particular affection for the music of Schubert whom he considered to be “the most poetic musician who ever lived”. Ordered according to key relationships rather than the narrative content of the verse, his transcriptions of Schubert’s two great song cycles, Winterreise and Schwanengesang are outstanding examples of the genre and formed a popular part of his concert programmes during his years as a travelling virtuoso. Avan Yu, one of Canada’s most exciting pianists, won the Gold Medal at the Canadian Chopin Competition at the age of seventeen. © 2015 Classical CD Choice

David Denton
David's Review Corner, May 2015

Born in Hong Kong, and spending his formative years in Canada, Avan Yu was the 2012 winner of the Sydney International Piano Competition, leading to this release. He has, more recently, appeared as the soloist with major orchestras from four different continents and in locations as diverse as Germany, China, Australia and the United States. For his first commercial recording he has selected Franz Liszt’s piano transcriptions of Schubert’s lieder. No other composer had such an insatiable appetite for transcribing the music of others, accommodating works for large ensembles in the confines of the keyboard, so that they could enjoy a more widespread performance. [Yu] has such an innate feeling for Schubert both in the pace and shading of each ‘song’, and for a perfect example of those qualities turn to track 15—Fruhlingssehnsucht from Schwanengesang—though it will be the sadness and intensity he brings to the final track—Kreigers Ahung—that will remain in the memory. Technically he is impeccable throughout, and he is obviously a young man with a big future. © 2015 David’s Review Corner

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