ESSENTIAL RECORDINGS
Charles Richard-Hamelin plays Chopin


FREDERIC CHOPIN - Sonata No. 3 in B minor, Op. 58 - Polonaise-fantaisie in A flat major, Op. 61 - Two Nocturnes, Op. 62 - Charles Richard-Hamelin (Piano) - Released: October 2015 - Analekta AN29127

One strong and clear indication that musicians, and especially pianists, have mastered their art, is when they've also become magicians and can make themselves and their instrument disappear from the picture, and leave nothing but the music for you to focus on and admire. When a pianist is struggling with technique, is cold and mechanical, or is expressively over-mannered, it distracts from the listening experience by bringing to our attention the fact that there's a person sitting at a keyboard trying their best to impress. To efface oneself, or to make oneself inconspicuous on a recording or during a live recital is quite an achievement, usually reserved for much later in someone's career. Canadian pianist Charles Richard-Hamelin on the other hand is still in the early stages of his concert stage performing career and already, on this is first recording, interprets and expresses Chopin with natural ease, and digs deep into the musical narrative allowing for the creative genius behind the music to come to the surface without artifice. Exceptional ... definitely a pianist to follow!

Jean-Yves Duperron - September 2015