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Jean-Rodolphe Kars’ French Recital

Jeremy Lee writes

Not many people have heard of the pianist Jean-Rodolphe Kars, who incidentally is still alive and well at the age of 67.  An Indian-born pianist of French origin, Kars won fourth place in the 1966 Leeds Piano Competition at the age of 19 and won the Concours de Piano Olivier Messiaen in 1968.  During the late 1960s and early 1970s Continue reading


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The Too-Terrific Turangalîla?

Jeremy Lee writes

Recorded in 1992 and having gone through a CD and SACD release before appearing at present in Universal’s 20C series, I present you the absolute textbook Turangalîla.  Chailly and his Concertgebouw deliver a ravishingly played performance:  it is well-paced, detailed, finely-hued, and impeccably Continue reading

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Austbo’s Vingt Regards: Soul and Spirit

Jeremy Lee writes

Messiaen’s epic piano cycle, the two-hour long Vingt Regards sur l’enfant-Jésus, is a set of contemplations and meditations on the birth of the baby Jesus and has been one of the most recorded piano cycles of modern days, with well-regarded performances by Yvonne Loriod, Pierre-Laurent Aimard, Peter Serkin and Steven Osborne.  Hakon Austbo’s Vingt Regards on Naxos Continue reading

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Upcoming Messiaen release from Naxos

Naxos’ Messiaen releases have been highly acclaimed almost without exception, including Norwegian pianist Hakon Austbo’s Messiaen piano music and Antoni Wit’s Turangalîla-Symphonie which was awarded a Cannes Classical Award in 2003.  Next month Naxos will release a CD of Messiaen’s orchestral works performed by the Lyon National Orchestra and conducted by Jun Markl containing Continue reading