AMERICAN WORKS FOR SOLO PIANO
Ching-Chu Hu composer
Gabriela Lena Frank composer
Philip Lasser composer
Minju Choi piano
Minju Choi, a passionate performer with a love for contemporary compositions, unveils the works of three powerful composers in BOUNDLESS, her album for solo piano works. BOUNDLESS covers it all: love, the transcending of cultural boundaries, and music’s ability to communicate the abstract and indescribable.
The first two arrangements on the album, Pulse and Sonata Andina No. 1, speak to a topic that Choi doesn’t just communicate well, but understands. Pulse is written by Ching-Chu Hu, a Chinese-American composer who has balanced his Eastern background and traditions with his Western music education. As a Korean-born American, Choi can empathize with this experience, as her own background contains a balance between identities and cultural representation. Neither identity is consumed by the other, but rather the East and West work together in a complex dance that magnifies and celebrates the other. The compositions extend even beyond the East-West dichotomy and plunge south, to the rhythms and strains of South America in Gabriela Lena Frank’s Sonata Andina, which showcases the styles of Peru and Bolivia among other nations.
Sonata for Piano Les Hiboux Blancs (The White Owls) takes on a different challenge. The composer, American-born and French-rooted Philip Lasser, expressed his view of writing in the abstract language of music — a language communicating that which cannot be expressed in spoken word. Choi takes the varying tempos and feelings within the piece and puts them through the exhilarating paces of her fingers across the ivories.
Choi has been a champion of contemporary composers throughout her career, and her debut album demonstrates this championship while also celebrating the many cultures and customs that make up American music. BOUNDLESS proves that there are no boundaries — cultural, energetic, or dynamic.