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In view of the fact that a certain publishing house is encountering inordinate difficulties in trying to establish an authentic text for a Chopin Complete Edition, it is interesting that my Oxford version of 1928, produced by the president of the French Chopin Society, has only a hairpin or two by way of dynamics in the first four pages of the G flat Impromptu Op 51. This is a notable self-denial on Chopin's part, and Miss Chang is right to keep her subtle interpretation of that opening at a modest level, even if the magic touch eludes her [listen -- track 3, 0:00-1:10]. It is different with the Fantaisie-Impromptu Op 66, the first of the posthumous works given to Schlesinger by Julian Fontana, Chopin's exact contemporary from Conservatoire days. How far Fontana may have adjusted dynamics I am in no position to say, but the sotto voce for much of the middle section rings true enough. Here, though, is every chance for Miss Chang to demonstrate her dazzling technique and overall control [listen -- track 4, 0:00-1:09].

Copyright © 26 November 2003 Robert Anderson, London UK


Chopin Impromptus, Ballades, Berceuse - Hsia-Jung Chang

Mandala 01 Stereo 58'02" 2002 Mandala Studio

Hsia-Jung Chang, piano

Frédéric Chopin: Impromptu in A flat Op 29; Impromptu in F sharp, Op 36; Inpromptu in G flat Op 51; Fantaisie-Impromptu in C sharp minor Op 66; Ballade in G minor Op 23; Ballade in F Op 38; Ballade in A flat Op 47; Ballade in F minor Op 52; Berceuse in D flat Op 57



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