Country : Canada / France / Québec Label : ATMA Classique Genres and styles : Classical / Modern Classical Year : 2024

Philip Chiu — Voyages

· by Elena Mandolini

Pianist Philip Chiu brings out an interesting new album for ATMA Classique. In 2022, Chiu presented Fables, an album devoted to the music of Maurice Ravel, but incorporating a contemporary work that entered into a dialogue with the French composer’s music. Today, with Voyages, the same concept is taken up again, this time turning to the piano works of Claude Debussy.

The album opens with a transcription of the Petite suite, usually performed for four hands. This transcription for solo piano, by Jacques Durand and revised by Philip Chiu himself, is extremely successful. It sounds like the original work. The album also features extracts from the first book of Images, as well as three Estampes. Well-known and often-performed works, of course, but they fit in perfectly with the very personal narrative of this album.

A personal subject indeed, since this opus is an exploration of the theme of belonging. The album doesn’t provide a definitive answer (that’s not its aim), but succeeds perfectly in conveying emotions and feelings that describe what it means “to belong”. Debussy’s works chosen for this album are all imbued with a certain sense of nostalgia, of calm, contemplative contemplation. The album is surrounded by an ethereal atmosphere, conducive to reflection, but not excluding moments of exuberant, dancing joy.

The suite Hong Kong Nostalgia, by composer Alice Ping Yee Ho, is skilfully integrated into the album program. It’s easy to see why this work was chosen to dialogue with Debussy’s works. Hong Kong Nostalgia takes up and further develops these explorations of belonging, while sometimes echoing Debussy’s writing techniques. For example, in the second movement, “Ten Thousand Buddhas Monastery”, we hear crescendo chord progressions reminiscent of “Cathédrale engloutie”. This suite is more than welcome on this album, which adds great depth and a variety of images and feelings.

It’s a pleasure to accept Philip Chiu’s invitation to embark on this great journey towards interiority. The pianist’s sensitive playing guides us well, with some moments more robust and powerful than others. This is a very well-thought-out and conceived opus, from program development to performance. If you can get your hands on a physical version of the album, you’ll also be able to enjoy the magnificent illustrations by Marie H. Sirois. Sirois, which also transport, in their own way.

A great album!

Latest 360 Content

Nadia Labrie – Flute Passion – Claude Bolling : Suite for Flute and Jazz Piano Trio

Nadia Labrie – Flute Passion – Claude Bolling : Suite for Flute and Jazz Piano Trio

David Jalbert – Prokofiev : Piano Sonatas vol. II

David Jalbert – Prokofiev : Piano Sonatas vol. II

HOMESHAKE – CD Wallet

HOMESHAKE – CD Wallet

Hawa B or not Hawa B ? “sadder but better” EP answers the question !

Hawa B or not Hawa B ? “sadder but better” EP answers the question !

Willows and Soleil Launière: A post-eclipse luminous evening

Willows and Soleil Launière: A post-eclipse luminous evening

Kevin Johansen – Quiero Mejor

Kevin Johansen – Quiero Mejor

Shades of Bowie, composed for the man behind Blackstar

Shades of Bowie, composed for the man behind Blackstar

Bahar Harandi’s feminist Iran

Bahar Harandi’s feminist Iran

Sunglaciers – Regular Nature

Sunglaciers – Regular Nature

Canicule – BOYZ

Canicule – BOYZ

David Jacques – 16 histoires de guitares III

David Jacques – 16 histoires de guitares III

Abel Selaocoe: the wind that blows away

Abel Selaocoe: the wind that blows away

Single of The Day – “everyday it rains” – Sea Shapes

Single of The Day – “everyday it rains” – Sea Shapes

Tolemn – Jango

Tolemn – Jango

Single of the Day – “OVEROVEROVER” – OH, BERLIN

Single of the Day – “OVEROVEROVER” – OH, BERLIN

Beyoncé – Cowboy Carter

Beyoncé – Cowboy Carter

Orkestar Kriminal – Originali

Orkestar Kriminal – Originali

Simon Denizart – Piece of Mind

Simon Denizart – Piece of Mind

Jean Jean Roosevelt – Libres ensemble

Jean Jean Roosevelt – Libres ensemble

Single of The Day – “False East” – Mr. Roswell’s Neighborhood

Single of The Day – “False East” – Mr. Roswell’s Neighborhood

Permanent Moves – Don’t Forget Us

Permanent Moves – Don’t Forget Us

Single of the Day – “The Vampire” – Tanz Akademie

Single of the Day – “The Vampire” – Tanz Akademie

Isabella D’Éloize Perron – Conquering America with Vivaldi and Piazzolla

Isabella D’Éloize Perron – Conquering America with Vivaldi and Piazzolla

Subscribe to our newsletter