CD Review: Melody Fader, Music of Frédéric Chopin

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.

Click here to purchase Melody’s Music of Frederic Chopin CD (iTunes)

Melody Fader – Pianist (Official website)

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