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Read what music critics are saying about Giorgio Koukl as performer and composer, excerpted from media coverage of live concerts, radio broadcasts, and especially about his recent compact discs on Naxos.
  Reviews
 


Martinů: Complete Piano Music, Vol. 2
Naxos 8.557918. (74' 19")
Release date: 27 February 2007

Selected by GRAMOPHONE MAGAZINE as an "Editor's Choice" for May 2007


"Koukl has the technical authority for these works. His playing gives off a sense of being at ease, with the ability to extend himself as needed."
  —Barry Brenesal, Fanfare

"Koukl is an excellent pianist with a capable technique and a shining tone. ...this disc will be mandatory for Martinu completists."
  —James Leonard, All Music Guide

"Technically solid and stylistically perceptive performances."
  —Jed Distler, Classics Today

Listen and learn more at NAXOS.com

Koukl is an excellent pianist with a capable technique and a shining tone, and he seems completely involved in every work no matter how short or inconsequential. [...] this disc will be mandatory for Martinu completists.

James Leonard, All Music Guide, [March] 2007

[Giorgio Koukl] is presently leading a busy concert life as pianist and harpsichordist. Coming to Martinu's music early in his life, there is that feel of affection evident throughout. The sound quality is admirable, and I cannot remember enjoying a piano disc quite so much for a very long time.

David's Review Corner, February 2007

Koukl has the technical authority for these works. His playing gives off a sense of being at ease, with the ability to extend himself as needed.

Kouklís major competition comes from Emil Leichner, [...] it is Koukl who regularly makes better overall sense of the rhythmic pulse that formed the foundation of Martinuís work. This, plus his willingness to apply a greater range of dynamics, makes the bright climax of ďBirds of paradise above the seaĒ seem an inevitable progression, [...] Both pianists are fine, but in general I prefer Kouklís greater presence and liveliness.

Sound on this pair of volumes is close, lifelike and reverberant, like a good seat in a small hall. [...] Definitely recommended, with hopes for more in the near future.

Barry Brenesal, Fanfare, May/June 2007   [this review also discusses Vol. 1]

As with Volume 1, there's plenty to admire in Koukl's technically solid and stylistically perceptive performances. In pieces that rely on rhythmic propulsion, Koukl tailors his tempos as if he were playing for dancers as opposed to piano competition jurors. He also plays more lyrical, introspective selections well, although I marginally prefer Emil Leichner's more delicately shaded and articulated way with The Shy Puppet and the Sick Puppet (Supraphon). [...] Yet on the whole, Koukl's overall artistry and wider color palette, helped by Naxos' superior engineering, take top honors.

Jed Distler, Classics Today, 2007

The many facets of Martinuís musical personality shine through both CDs. Both of them are beautifully planned with the first featuring his fascination in the late 1920s with jazz. [...] Giorgio Koukl manages this repertoire with great poise and considerable verve in the jazz-inspired works [...]

The second disc [...] Kouklís performances are idiomatic and rather more colourful than on the first disc.

Jan Smaczny, BBC Music Magazine   [this review also discusses Vol. 1]

These are probably not deathless works, but they are charming, lightly scored and entirely tonal. They are occasionally virtuosic but mostly high-quality salon music. They are played gorgeously by talented Czech-Swiss pianist Giorgio Koukl in lifelike sound.

J. Scott Morrison, Amazon.com, 28 March 2007

These early Martinu works are very far from his later self. It's delightful stuff, though, and played with commitment by Giorgio Koukl.

Gramophone, Editor's Choice, May 2007

Kouklís performances [...] are very warmly recorded but this is a splendid disc despite that. Recommended.

Guy Rickards, Gramophone, May 2007

More praise for Giorgio Koukl in the Index of Reviews.

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