On this, her second CD, pianist Melody Fader presents an all-Chopin recital that covers a decent cross section of Chopin’s well-known repertoire, and plays it with such a refreshing tone. The recording, having been done at Fraser Performance Studio (home of WGBH), reveals itself as a crisp, rich document of this young soloist’s journey of an ultimate “pianist’s composer”.
After a superb reading of the F-sharp Bacarolle, op. 60, Fader performs 4 straight pieces in C-sharp (technically, 2 of them are D-flat–In any event, it’s a chord that exudes such warmth for me, and I just can’t explain why) that almost sound as if Chopin intended this to be another sonata. Among these works is the Nocturne #2, and being a piece that I have never been able to keep a memory of from anyone, it seems to finally have a memory thanks to Fader–I think she succeeds in making it a signature piece (take a look here).
Ballade #1 in G is another surprise. The piece is one of the most epic and symphonic of Chopin’s piano works, and Fader brings the grandeur faithfully, even the virtuosic conclusion!
The Mazurka, op. 17, #1 and the 3 op. 28 Preludes are almost like vignettes among the larger works, but here they play just like Chopin himself taking requests at a surprise concert.
I was expecting much more from the Scherzo #2 in B-flat minor, one of my favorites. Fader seems to hold back on it, somewhat. I’m much more used to a more manic version, possibly any of the Horowitz recordings.
Fader is definitely a genuine interpreter of Chopin, and she has selected pieces where her musical identity resonates in such a beautiful way. I hope she does more recordings of this nature, and I’d love to hear her take on Liszt eventually.
Melody Fader – Pianist (Official website)