Magazine article Gramophone

Chiayu: 'Journeys'

Magazine article Gramophone

Chiayu: 'Journeys'

Article excerpt

Chiayu

'Journeys' Urban Sketches (a). Huan (b). Journey to the West (c). Twelve Signs (d). Sparkle (e). Zhi (f) (a) Ricardo Morales cl (e) Sara Huebner, (e) Diana Wensley tpts (e) Dana Cullen hn (e) Brian Santero tbn (e) Pierrick Fournes tuba (f) Hirono Oka vn (d) Che-Hung Chen va (a) Clancy Newman vc (f) Hanchien Lee, (a) Natalie Zhu pfs (b) Coline-Marie Orliac hp (c) Ciompi Quartet

Naxos American Classics (B) 8 559713 (76' * DDD)

In this dazzling series of premiere recordings, Chiayu (b 1975) unleashes bursts of creativity in five works composed between 2005 and 2013 for a variety of configurations. If her music may well reflect the accents, sounds and rhythms of her Taiwanese origins, even the uninitiated will feel the impact of her highly attractive musical personality. Whether in Twelve Signs for solo viola, based on the signs of the zodiac and played with mesmerising intensity by the Philadelphia Orchestra's Che-Hung Chen; or Journey to the West, based on a Ming Dynasty novel about a monk and a monkey king's journey to seek sacred texts in India, played with consummate ease and artistry by Duke University's Ciompi Quartet, the music provides challenges for the players and delights for the listener. …

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