FRIEND TASKMASTER TEACHER
Johann Sebastian Bach, George Gershwin, Alberto Ginastera, Franz Liszt, Felix Mendelssohn
ALPIN HONG, piano
"[Hong plays] a glittering Rondo Capriccioso....His percussive touch works to its best in the [Ginastera] which rivals best renditions of this early work...I appreciate his rhythmic drive and clarity...I look forward to his next recording."
American Record Guide - November / December 2007
"[Alpin Hong] offers vibrantly etched performances...He casts a keen ear for textural clarity and structure on Bach's Chromatic Fantasy and Fugue, even within lavish sonorities that bask in the concert grand's many-splendoured possibilities...To Mendelssohn's Rondo capriccioso Hong applies the nimblest of touch, finding the lilting and brilliant qualities in the scampering material, while also lingering sensitively in poetic passages...He shapes Mendelssohn's On Wings of Song with utmost attention to lyrical tenderness...he treats Ginastera's Danzas Argentinas with equal degrees of fierce bravura and finesse. The zesty and nostalgic urban aura of Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue seems tailor-made for Hong's combination of rhythmic gusto, affection and gleeful attack."
Gramophone, September 2007
"Mr. Hong takes the opening of the Chromatic Fantasy and Fugue as slowly and deliberately as ever I have heard anyone play it--so he caught my attention immediately. He spins the entire work out for twelve minutes, which must be among the broadest of conceptions. That Hong can play the brisk staccati at breakneck speed when he wants to only certifies the highly improvisational concept he has of the piece... The Rondo capriccioso of Mendelssohn gives full vent to Hong's color capacities in bravura style. The wicked fioritura and broad spans deter Hong not at all, and the coda comes off in a style reminiscent of Jorge Bolet. Liszt's lovely, extended nocturne after Lamartine, his Benediction of God in His Solitude, finds in Hong a natural exponent for its liquid brush-stokes...The Danzas Argentinas engage Hong in another form of nationalistic virtuosity... The concluding Dance allows Hong to indulge his capacities for percussive savagery...[In] Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue [Hong] manages to punch and to coax enough multifarious colors from his instrument to engage and to seduce our feet to tapping and our heads nodding in sympathetic, stride rhythm."
Audiophile Audition, May 2007
Equally captivating in his interpretations of Schubert, Shostakovich, Schoenberg or Stravinsky, Alpin Hong
thrills audiences with his stunning virtuosity, artistic vision, and irreverent style. First Prize Winner at the 2001 Concert Artists Guild International Competition, and the first pianist in eight years to win CAG’s highest honor, his charismatic performance won him standing ovations and the jury’s unanimous vote.
Mr. Hong’s concert itinerary spans the continental United States, with recital and orchestral engagements across the globe. Recent performances include Los Angeles’ Wilshire Ebell Theatre and Royce Hall at UCLA, Weill Recital Hall, Rockhotel Pianofest, Merkin Concert Hall, Seoul’s Hoam Arts Center, the Frick Arts Centre and the Asociacion Nacional de Conciertos in Panama.
A native of Los Angeles, Alpin Hong is a graduate of the Juilliard School, where he studied with Jerome Lowenthal. He made his orchestral debut with the Kalamazoo Symphony at age 10, and soon after won the 1989 Stravinsky Piano Competition and the 1994 Los Angeles Spotlight Awards Competition He has since developed an international career, recently performing with the Korean Broadcast Symphony, as well as at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in Los Angeles, and at Alice Tully Hall and Avery Fisher Hall. Festival appearances include the Music Academy of the West, Aspen and Bowdoin Summer Music Festivals.
JOHANN SEBASTIAN BACH
Chromatic Fantasy and Fugue in D minor, BWV.903
Rondo Capriccioso, Op.14
Benediction de Dieu dans la solitude
On Wings of Song
(1840 transcription of Mendelssohn's "Auf Flugeln des Gesanges, Op.34 No.2)
Rhapsody in Blue