Toshio Hosokawa Orchestral Works #4

NAXOS 8.574543

Toshio Hosokawa is Japan's leading living composer. This fourth volume in the series of his orchestral works, during which he was present for all recording sessions, contains two concertos and two works for orchestra. The Trumpet Concerto "Im Nebel", which draws its inspiration from Herman Hesse's poem, conjures up a vision of man and nature, in which the trumpet slowly and magically melts into the orchestral mist. Inspired by a birth, Violin Concerto "Genesis" again places the soloist as the human protagonist in a universal drama of finding harmony through conflict. "Sakura" is one of Japan's best-loved songs, arranged by Hosokawa for orchestra, and "Uzu" displays unique orchestral sonorities. 

24 June 2024

Kaleidoscope 琴炫彩影

Naïve Records V8088

For his debut album, the violinist Paul Huang has chosen to spotlight the colour and poetry of his instrument in a kaleidoscopic recital of sonatas by Saint-Saëns, Respighi, Chopin and Paganini.

Paul Huang is undoubtedly a virtuoso. A recipient of the prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant and Lincoln Center Award for Emerging Artists, he is already renowned, and has been a guest at the most prestigious venues and festivals such as the Kennedy Center, Wigmore Hall, Aspen and Lucerne Music Festivals. The sonatas by Saint-Saëns and Respighi are also undeniably virtuosic, and among the most difficult works in the violin repertoire. But virtuosity is not the most important quality that Huang focuses on here: he was initially attracted to the instrument as a young boy for “its sonority and its wonderful lyric qualities”.

A subtle, refined violin – the legendary 1742 “ex-Wieniawski” Guarneri del Gesù – ensures a variety of colour and contrast for this vibrant Romantic programme. Paul Huang deploys a wide, generous palette of emotions bestowing a moving intimacy to Paganini’s famous Cantabile or Chopin’s Nocturne. Respighi’s too little known sonata vibrates from the initial Moderato with velvety phrasing and controlled interiority, while the sonata by Saint-Saëns assumes the virtuosity of its last two movements with carefree beauty. “I often compare a great instrument to a great painter – its countless nuances enable him to create and recreate his art in countless ways. This is precisely what I feel when playing this violin,” says Paul Huang. In the pianist Helen Huang, the young Taiwanese violinist has found an attentive partner who delicately enhances his textured playing. Their duets flourish in an atmosphere of confidence that has matured throughout their long collaboration and a shared exacting and passionate zest for chamber music. “I would like this album to reflect my love of the violin,” concludes Paul Huang. It certainly does.




黃俊文錄製這張專輯時使用的是來自1742年的富有傳奇色彩的​耶穌-瓜奈里小提琴,曾經由維尼奧夫斯基使用,音色細膩精緻,使這套充滿活力的浪漫主義曲目飽含豐富色彩與對比。他在演繹帕格尼尼《如歌》和蕭邦《夜曲》中抒發了宏大而豐富的情懷,從而營造了一種動人的親切感。他演奏雷史畢基鮮為人知的奏鳴曲時,憑藉其天鵝絨般的柔潤分句與精心控制下的內斂演繹,從開頭的慢板開始就動人心弦,而在聖桑奏鳴曲最後兩個樂章中,他則以精湛技藝展現了無憂無慮的美感。“我經常把一把出色的樂器比作一位偉大畫家——它能夠展現的無限細節使其能夠以無數種方式來創造和再現藝術。這就是我演奏這把小提琴的感覺。” 黃俊文如是說。

鋼琴家黃海倫作為一位細心的搭檔,為這位年輕臺灣小提琴家質感十足的演奏增添了不少精緻色彩。他們在長期的合作中,憑藉對室內樂共同的嚴謹和熱情,逐漸培養成熟了一種飽含自信的氛圍,讓他們的合作能夠在這種氛圍中蓬勃生長。黃俊文說: “希望這張專輯能反映出我對小提琴的熱愛。” 的確如此。

06 October 2023