Gramaphone Critic's Choice Award
Jean Muller: Chopin Recital
The newest CD release from Blüthner Artist Jean Muller won Gramophone's Critic's Choice Award, and an excellent review from Gramophone's top critic Bryce Morrison.
Concert-goers in Leipzig enjoyed a superb performance by Mr. Mulller last month at the Blüthner Spring Concert in the Blüthner Pavilion. For those who have not had the pleasure of hearing his performance in person, Muller's Chopin Recital will be available on Amazon.com begining April 12th.
"Chopin from the Luxembourg Conservatoire piano professor
It is surely a critic’s joy to discover a major talent relatively unknown and appearing on a minor label. Jean Muller is a 33-year-old Luxembourgeois pianist celebrated by Jean Claude Pennetier as a complete artist, with ‘fingers, head and heart’. Such seeming hyperbole is not misleading. Heard here in mostly familiar Chopin, Muller makes everything enthrallingly fresh and unfamiliar. Indeed, you seem to be hearing the Four Ballades for the First time, such is the pianist’s recreative urgency. Backed by a savage technical voltage, he lifts you far above studio conditions or the polished if politely impersonal expertise too familiar from the competition circuit. Few pianists of any age or nationality have recreated the storming codas of the First and Fourth Ballades (the first truly appassionato, il piu forte possible and Presto con fuoco – a unique conglomerate in Chopin) with such brilliant fury, any possible picture of Chopin as an ailing salon figure banished from the imagination.
That Muller is no less striking in the halting, neurasthenic poetry of the A minor Mazurka, Op 17 No 4, and in the bittersweet melancholy of the A flat Waltz, Op 69 No 1, says much for his extraordinary range and scope. In short, here is a pianist who can pin you back by the ears with heroic strength and propulsion but who is no less subtle and insinuating when Chopin is lost in reverie and introspection. Can any lover of Chopin’s music – or of anyone else’s – afford to be without this disc?
- Bryce Morrison, Gramphone, April 2012.
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