The worlds of classical music and hip-hop may seem too far apart to ever come together in any meaningful way. However, two artists (and a youth orchestra) are looking to remix the way we think about these two different art forms: composer/arranger Johan and conductor Yuga Cohler, the music director of the Young Musicians Debut Chamber Orchestra.
Soon after 28-year-old Yekwon Sunwoo won the 15th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, Decca Gold released a recording of his performances at the competition called Cliburn Gold, which became number one on Billboard’s Traditional Classical Album charts.
Yekwon Sunwoo talks about his career with Editor Leonne Lewis.
Julian Haylock reviews Anne Akiko Meyers's latest album, Fantasia.
"Yet the star item here is Rautavaara's Fantasia (2015), one of his last works and composed especially for Meyers, who soars aloft with its tender cantabile, shaping its shimmering melodic lines with a profound sensitivity that exerts irresistible pressure on the tear ducts."
The star of the concerts was the Russian-American pianist Olga Kern, outstandingly glamorous in dazzling multi-coloured dresses – a different one for each performance. On the first day she played a selection of Rachmaninov Preludes and Scriabin Études with sensational aplomb, accuracy and virtuosity. And her large hands made mincemeat of the notorious difficulties in Balakirev’s Islamey. It is a long time since I have heard – or seen – anything like this.
Haochen talks to Primephonic about growing up in China, the contrast in approach between the Chinese and American music conservatoires, and his strongest influences.
After his Carnegie Hall performance, where pianist Haochen Zhang stepped in for Lang Lang who had withdrawn for health reasons, Haochen and I met at Knave to talk about his career as a pianist, inspirations in music, and his debut studio recording featuring works by Schumann, Liszt, Janácek and Brahms.
Gerard Schwarz, music director of the All-Star Orchestra and the Eastern Music Festival, and Conductor Laureate of the Seattle Symphony, enters his 70th year. Marking the occasion, an impressive 30-disc album has recently been released on Naxos Records. Primephonic caught up with him to discuss his impressive career, superb recordings and unstoppable endeavours.
There's a lot more to being a Cliburn winner than the prestige that goes with the title. As in other professions, much goes on behind the scenes to ensure a long and successful career as a pianist. Beyond the prestige, cash prizes and hours of rehearsal, the medalists of the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition get the opportunity to launch careers as concert pianists through concert bookings, recordings and significant media exposure via the career management prize.
The morning after his Carnegie Hall performance, where pianist Haochen Zhang stepped in for Lang Lang who had withdrawn for health reasons, Haochen and I met at Knave to talk about his career as a pianist, inspirations in music, and his debut studio recording featuring works by Schumann, Liszt, Janácek and Brahms.
Violinist Anne Akiko Meyers doesn’t just set the standard; she is the standard. Her internationally acclaimed recordings and performances have a distinction that’s all about interpretative sophistication, silky sounds and crystal intonation. She also has a keen interest in promoting and commissioning works by composers of our time.