Discussion:
Kun-Woo Paik's new Schumann recital on DG
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Oscar
2020-09-24 23:09:35 UTC
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Having a difficult time finding info about this new release, published last Friday 9/18. It is available for streaming only on AppleMusic, but there is no iTunes download (in U.S.), nor am I able to find the physical discs anywhere online. Presto doesn't even have a listing for the download. And to be sure, this _is_ a DG release. I did like this release on first audition, and have been listening more critically in subsequent days. It seems to be one I am coming back to. Just putting this out there, this release is a 'thing' and I look forward to the usual comments from S.E. and our pianophile Board of Governors. Look forward to Gramophone and Herky getting around to publishing reviews as well.

Paik is now 74 years-old, attended Juilliard and studied with Rosina Lhévinne, Ilona Kabos, Guido Agosti and Wilhelm Kempff. In 2000, he was made Chevalier de l'ordre des arts et des lettres by the French Government, and later that same year (September) he was the first Korean artist to be officially invited to perform in China. I still maintain his cycle of Prokofiev Piano Concertos is among the best in the catalog (Polish Radio Symphony Orchestra and Antoni Wit for Naxos, Diapason d'Or in 1993). But I am not familiar with much else. I have the Bach/Busoni disc, but it's been a while since I played it. More recent releases on DG are unknown to me, a Chopin Nocturnes 2CD most recently in 2018. The Decca integrale of the Beethoven Piano Sonatas is one I've wanted to hear as well.

Official DG page: https://www.deutschegrammophon.com/en/catalogue/products/schumann-kun-woo-paik-12097
Note: Streaming and Download listed but no CD _but_ there is a UPC assignation 00028948551460, or for collectors '485 5146'. Perplexing.

-Theme and Variations in E-Flat Major, WoO 24 'Ghost Variations'
-Abegg Variations, Op.1
-Arabeske In C, Op.18
-Bunte Blätter, Op.99
-3 Fantasiestücke, Op.111
-Kinderszenen, Op.15
-Nachtstücke, Op.23
-Papillons, Op. 2 · Waldszenen, Op.82
-Gesänge der Frühe, Op.133


Träumerei:


DG blurb [why the first person? "reminds _me_ of"? who is 'me'? -ed.]
<< The album cover reminds me of Monk by the Sea, an oil painting that the German romantic artist Caspar David Friedrich (1774–1840) created in 1810, the year when Schumann was born. Schumann has two sides of his personality: young Schumann, who was filled with musical, literary inspirations and dreams, and later Schumann, who was consumed by madness and darkness. Pianist Kun-Woo Paik looks like a traveller who is about to step towards the sky. When you take a closer look, you realize that the landscape isn’t real but a wall. Here the sky, a symbol of universe and infinity, is restraint and restriction.

Paik is a real romanticist who believes in love. Picasso once said it took a lifetime to paint like a child. He also has never lost the boy in him. For this, he became a philosopher. A boy and a philosopher.

Kun-Woo Paik – Schumann: Kinderszenen Op.15, VII. Träumerei
Listen to 'Schumann': https://DG.lnk.to/Paik >>


A sampling of the YT Comments:

"The old man is playing the piano hard.
so, I also do my best to practice the piano."

"His noble saga inspires everyone, humble but elegant. May bless you and your wife. Maestro."

"Omg thanx DG"
"very welcome :)" -DG official account reply
Oscar
2020-09-24 23:16:53 UTC
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Another YT sample clip posted 10 hours ago, 9/24/2020:

(Waldszene Op. 82: III.. Einsame Blume (Lonely Flowers))
Ricardo Jimenez
2020-09-25 00:22:37 UTC
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On Thu, 24 Sep 2020 16:16:53 -0700 (PDT), Oscar
Post by Oscar
http://youtu.be/8UUWB_fOZDw (Waldszene Op. 82: III.. Einsame Blume (Lonely Flowers))
The two disc, 2 hour 27 minute set is available on Spotify.
Oscar
2020-09-25 00:29:36 UTC
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Post by Ricardo Jimenez
The two disc, 2 hour 27 minute set is available on Spotify.
I'll be interest in yr opinion, as well as Bozo, herman, dk, et al.
Ricardo Jimenez
2020-09-27 00:58:25 UTC
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On Thu, 24 Sep 2020 17:29:36 -0700 (PDT), Oscar
Post by Oscar
Post by Ricardo Jimenez
The two disc, 2 hour 27 minute set is available on Spotify.
I'll be interest in yr opinion, as well as Bozo, herman, dk, et al.
Beautiful, clear playing. You hear every note even when the texture
thickens. Not super energetic. I did miss the kind of craziness that
Horowitz would add to some of these pieces.
Not a Dentist
2020-09-27 08:21:27 UTC
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Post by Oscar
Post by Ricardo Jimenez
The two disc, 2 hour 27 minute set is available on Spotify.
I'll be interest in yr opinion, as well as Bozo, herman, dk, et al.
The entire set is also available for streaming on Amazon Prime Music. First listening was a definite thumbs up!!
Oscar
2020-09-27 15:01:31 UTC
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I found the 2CD on eBay and ordered it. Yes, a Korean-only release. Continuing to sit with this quietly enticing and alluring release. One of the best Kinderszenens I've heard in a while. Transfixing. Beautiful playing married to an almost uncanny articulation, as Mr. Jimenez stated upthread.
Oscar
2020-09-27 15:07:07 UTC
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Album sessions were in May 2020 at the stunning Tongyeong Concert Hall in South Gyeongsang Province, South Korea. The first great recital album of quarantine??


From The Korea Herald:

<< Pianist Paik returns with Schumann

By Im Eun-byel
September 8, 2020

Pianist Paik Kun-woo will hold a recital Oct. 9 at the Lotte Concert Hall in eastern Seoul, following the release of a new album under the Deutsche Grammophon label this month.

Paik, a celebrated pianist based in Paris, will look into the life of German Romantic composer Robert Schumann (1810-1856) in a recital that begins with Schumann’s first work and ends with his last.

The program will include Schumann’s Abegg Variations, Op. 1; Drei Fantasiestu (Three Fantasy Pieces), Op. 111; Arabeske, Op. 18; Gesange der Fruhe (Songs of Dawn), Op. 133; Funf Albumblatter from Bunte Blatter (Colorful Leaves), Op. 99; Kinderszenen (Scenes From Childhood), Op. 15; and Thema mit Variationen “Ghost Variations,” WoO 24.

The Oct. 9 engagement will be followed by a performance at the Gangdong Arts Center in eastern Seoul and by shows in Gyeonggi Province, Daegu, Gwangju, Changwon, South Gyeongsang Province and Ulsan. The tour will wrap up in November after recitals in Incheon and Tongyeong.

Prior to the tour, Paik’s recording of Schumann will be released Sept. 17 under the DG label. Paik recorded the tracks in May at the Tongyeong Concert Hall, the venue of the annual Tongyeong International Music Festival in the southern coastal city.

The 74-year-old virtuoso made his debut as a concert pianist at the age of 10 and has performed with the world’s most acclaimed orchestras ever since.

To prevent the spread of COVID-19, every other seat in the concert hall will be left empty during the recital. Ticket sales will open Thursday via Interpark and the official website of the Lotte Concert Hall.

Tickets are priced from 50,000 won to 120,000 won ($42.08 to $100.98). >>


http://www.koreaherald.com/view.php?ud=20200908000763
Oscar
2020-10-14 22:30:14 UTC
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The 2CD set arrived in the post yesterday from Korea. Yes, this is a Universal Music Korea release. Firm cardboard 3-panel digipak, high-quality paper stock (however, it's one of those booklet-glue-in thingies—hate that). Deluxe presentation. Still playing this one a lot, now 5 weeks after release.
Frank Berger
2020-10-15 00:08:56 UTC
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Post by Oscar
The 2CD set arrived in the post yesterday from Korea. Yes, this is a Universal Music Korea release. Firm cardboard 3-panel digipak, high-quality paper stock (however, it's one of those booklet-glue-in thingies—hate that). Deluxe presentation. Still playing this one a lot, now 5 weeks after release.
Ordered mine in 9/28. As of 10/13 still in the hands of
Korean Postal system.

t***@hotmail.com
2020-09-26 23:52:14 UTC
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May be local release in South Korea.
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