Following on from her hugely successful Chopin recordings, renowned Canadian pianist Janina Fialkowska has recorded a personal selection of Liszt’s solo piano music.
“The playing is sheer bliss. If you buy one Chopin selection this year, make it Fialkowska’s” The Sunday Times
“The highlight of this disc is Chopin's Chants polonais - Fialkowska plays all six that Liszt transcribed, and blends drama with lyricism. Others may bring more intimacy, but this is classy playing. Liszt's transcription of the 'Gretchen' movement from A Faust Symphony is also colourful.” BBC Music Magazine, January 2012 ****
“The Polish-Canadian plays from the heart...the reason to buy this CD is the Bénédiction de Dieu dans la solitude, a piece of extraordinary beauty that plays to Fialkowska’s strengths – her romantic sensibility, her sense of poetry, her unaffected artistry and knack of showcasing the music’s Chopin-esque brilliance.” Financial Times, 30th October 2011 *****
“The emphasis here is on variety within variety, on Liszt's generous and extraordinary response to other composers...Fialkowska takes the Faust Waltz by virtuouso storm...We need many more records from this master-pianist” Gramophone Magazine, January 2012
“There’s not a dud moment in the recital. And this is impressive playing on any account, more so when you read that Fialkowska’s career was nearly derailed by a tumour discovered in her arm in 2002. After groundbreaking, successful treatment she resumed playing in 2004 and sounds better than ever. I think I’m now a paid-up Liszt fan.” The Arts Desk, 3rd March 2012
“an enchanting recital...The poise, spectrum of tone and sheer naturalness of her playing makes the Bénédiction de Dieu dans la solitude utterly compelling, the instinctive expressiveness of Liszt’s Chopin arrangements likewise...this is a disc to be treasured by admirers of elegant pianism.” The Telegraph, 11th November 2011 *****
“Liszt discs aren’t thin on the ground but this one stands out...the playing of these lesser-heard pieces is magical. Highlights are the sublime Bénédiction de Dieu dans la Solitude; the joyously rippling Chopin paraphrases, Six Chants Polonais; and Gretchen, the composer’s rapturous transcription of the slow movement from his Faust Symphony.” The Times, 22nd October 2011 ****