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Rieko Aizawa

  • Pianist


Rieko Aizawa reviews

The New York Times (NY)
"The impressive musicianship"

"She performed with impressive musicality, a crisp touch and expressive phrasing."

  The New York Times (NY)
"Also impressive was the performance of [Mozart's] Concerto No.12 by Rieko Aizawa, a pianist with a well-developed technique and even assertiveness; and the beauty she brought to the Andante left a listener assured that subtlety and grace, too, are within her grasp."

   St. Paul Pioneer Press (MN)
" ...the Salieri Piano Concerto in C was played so splendidly by Rieko Aizawa. Hers was a graceful reading, one filled with fleet-fingered fast passages and an involving slow movement. Yes, one can see how, at key points in the composition, Salieri chose convention and habit where Mozart may have employed imagination. But Aizawa's performance lent the work a respect it rarely receives. "

  News-Press Correspondent (Santa Barbara, CA)
"beauteously..., with an illuminating clarity"

The Washington Post (DC)
"She played with a beautiful, limpid tone and a sense of characterization and cohesiveness that is unusual."

San Francisco Chronicle (CA)
"She presented the Andante in a gentle, thoughtful way that graced the music, returning Mozart's thought in its spirit. That was satisfying and uplifting, the Rondo a charm."

  Time Out (NY)
"Playing Bach, Takemitsu and Robert Schumann, Aizawa brought something to the concert too frequently missing in our era of authenticity and score devotion. She brilliantly captured the essence of each composer while adding heavy doses of herself."

  The Sarasota Herald Tribune (FL)
"Who could have imagined the resonant brilliance of sound, the controlled fire, the nuances, articulation and variety of color [Aizawa] unleashed."

   The Albuquerque Journal (NM)
"Rieko Aizawa, a returning soloist from two years ago, explored its wide emotional territory with power and passion. She was particularly eloquent in articulation Mozart's seemingly simple, bare melodic lines, as in the second movement. Her performance radiated conviction, strength and dimension."

   The Plain Dealer (Cleveland, OH)
"a pianist of extraordinary refinement and vitality" "Aizawa gave detailed, prismatic consideration. ....Aizawa's effortless grace and crystalline clarity provided superb delineation.... In Aizawa's bold hands, the piano lines melded dramatic contrast with poetic allure."

   The Albuquerque Journal (NM)
"In her hands, the Ravel unfolded like a sustained poem. With a wide palette of tonal colors and exquisite dynamic control, she played as if painting with sound, seeming to respond spontaneously to Ravel's suggestions rather than giving a fixed interpretation."

   Rosewell Daily Record (NM)
"Her rendering of the Chopin concerto was a tour de force of extraordinary technique and artistic expression."

  The Daily Telegram (MI)
"The concert also featured a sparkling performance by guest pianist Rieko Aizawa in the "Emperor" Concerto. She played the Beethoven with grace and precision, and with a beautiful technique that showcased the music to perfection."

  Tampa Tribune (FL)
" was [the conductor's] union with Aizawa that perked up ears and hearts. A sparkling technique triumph, the performance also managed to breathe in a natural give-and-take between soloist and orchestra. Her clarity of tone, impeccable control and subtle style created a strong impression..."

  The Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
"The orchestra and guest soloist, Rieko Aizawa, rendered Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 17 with light, ebullient grace and unrushed pageantry... From her Alberti bass entrance to the trill-tickling cadenza, her frolicsome way with the concerto's opening Allegro bounced across the keyboard. Yet just when one began to wonder if there was more to this 20-something virtuoso than sunny day stuff, Aizawa brought gorgeous gravity to the central adagio. Arms moving in balletic poise, this rising Japanese star let the harmonic intensity and dark interiors of this most-Mozartian of movements possess her - and us."

   Bradenton Herald (FL)
"Aizawa displayed a wide variety of expression and color... with every note clear and sparkling...

   Los Angeles Times (CA)
"... an impressive debut... gave evidence of a large and comprehensive musical talent in her Bach-Schubert-Takemitsu-Schumann program."

   Richmond Times-Dispatch (VA)
"Rieko Aizawa, a dream of a pianist for Faure, has a tone that is light and lyrical, playful, or strong and bell-like, as needed."

  The Philadelphia Inquirer (PA)
"Young pianist sparkles in recital.... A capacity crowd demonstrated palpable enthusiasm."

   Worcester Telegram & Gasette (MA)
"This pianist not only possesses brilliant and self-assured digital technique, but also has that rare and refined sense of ensemble that makes a top-flight chamber music player."