New CD & Download from Piano21 Records – Harp Meets Piano – Isabelle Courret & Cyprien Katsaris – PRESS INFORMATION
Harp Meets Piano –
Performed by Isabelle Courret (harp) & Cyprien Katsaris (piano) Catalogue No.: P21-061 Bar Code: 3770004972463 Single CD/Standard Jewel Case/Full Price Release Date 2nd October 2020 Worldwide Physical Distribution via Naxos
excludes France (Socadisc), Greece (Opera CD) & Japan (Tokyo MPlus)
Rachmaninov: Suite for Two Pianos No. 1 in G minor, Op. 5 “Fantasie-tableaux” (version for harp & piano); Reinecke: Harp Concerto in E minor, Op. 182 (orchestral part arranged for solo piano by David Cutler); Piazzolla: Histoire du Tango for flute & guitar – Café, 1930 & Night Club, 1960 – (harp part from the arrangement for flute & harp by Kari Vehmanen, piano part from the arrangement for piano four hands – primo part – by Kyoko Yamamoto); Régis Chesneau (b 1986): Contemplations I & II; Tableau I – V; Impreso; Albeniz: Pavana-Capricho, Op. 12 (arr. for piano four-hands by the composer, played here with piano – primo part – and harp – secondo part)
Ever imagined an entire programme devoted to marrying the sounds of the harp and the piano? Yes, of course there is quite a comprehensive repertoire for these two instruments thanks to the composing talents of Ferdinand Ries (1784-1838), Joseph Woelfl (1773-1812), Jan Ladislav Dussek (1760-1812), François-Adrien Boieldieu (1775-1834), Johann Nepomuk Hummel (1778-1837), Elias Parish-Alvars (1808-1849) and Nicholas-Charles Bochsa (1789-1856), to mention but a few of the better-known names, but, to be honest, not many of their works retain much significance. Years later, a young French composer, Régis Chesneau (born 1986), took an interest in this unusual instrumental pairing; working from three of his arrangements, the harpist Isabelle Courret – sometime soloist at La Scala in Milan – and the pianist Cyprien Katsaris have devised this surprising programme, a veritable journey through the centuries.
A short filmed excerpt of Chesneau’s Tableau I can be viewed here:
From an early age, Isabelle Courret studied the harp at the Conservatoire National de Région de Bordeaux. At fourteen, she was admitted to the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique in Paris studying harp and chamber music. In 1986 at the age of 17, she was unanimously awarded first prize for harp by the Jury.
During the 1991-1992 season, she was the Principal Harp at the Scala Theater in Milan under the direction of Riccardo Muti, Lorin Maazel and Semyon Bychkov.
She regularly gives recital concerts in France and abroad (including the USA) together with numerous concerto performances in Paris, London, Cairo, Athens and several other cities. Her love of chamber music sees her performing with numerous artists – and in duet with flautists.
She also participated in the Flute Symposium at the “Acropolis” Theater in Nice, and regularly at the Yachats Festival in the United States of America.
Cyprien Katsaris, the French-Cypriot pianist and composer, was born on May 5th, 1951 in Marseilles. He first began to play the piano at the age of four, in Cameroon where he spent his childhood. He is a graduate of the Paris Conservatoire where he studied piano as well as chamber music. He gave his first public concert in Paris, at the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées on 8 May 1966.
His major international career includes performances with the world’s greatest orchestras. He has collaborated with conductors such as Leonard Bernstein, Mstislav Rostropovich, Sir Neville Marriner, Sir Simon Rattle, Myung Whun Chung, Christoph von Dohnányi, Charles Dutoit, Antal Doráti, Ivan Fischer, and Nikolaus Harnoncourt to name just a few. In addition to his activities as a soloist he founded the “Katsaris Piano Quintet”. This has received a very enthusiastic response from both the press and audiences in the Americas, Europe and Japan.
Mr. Katsaris has recorded extensively for Teldec, Sony Classical, EMI, Deutsche Grammophon, BMG-RCA, Decca, Pavane, and now on his own label, PIANO 21. His discography consists of solo works by most of the greatest masters as well as works for piano and orchestra. In addition to the standard repertory, Cyprien Katsaris has recorded, as world premières, long lost works such as the Liszt/Tchaikovsky Concerto in the Hungarian style with Eugene Ormandy and the Philadelphia Orchestra, Beethoven’s own piano arrangement of his ballet The Creatures of Prometheus and Gustav Mahler’s original piano version of Das Lied von der Erde with Mezzo Brigitte Fassbaender and Tenor Thomas Moser.
Mr. Katsaris has been a member of the jury of numerous International Competitions.
He has also conducted many masterclasses all over the world.