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Pianist Cho Seong-jin releases sixth album, delays recitals due to health problems
  • September 01, 2021 | Music

Pianist Cho Seong-jin releases sixth album,
delays recitals due to health problems

Updated : 2021-08-29 15:41


By Park Ji-won

Pianist Cho Seong-jin, the winner of the 2015 International Chopin Piano Competition, released his sixth album ― the second featuring the music of Chopin ― on Friday six years after his debut album in 2015. He was planning to start a recital tour in Korea from Aug. 31, however, he has delayed some of the performances due to health problems.

Titled "Chopin: Piano Concerto No. 2 ― Scherzi" and released through Deutsche Grammophon, the album features Chopin's works, "Piano Concerto No. 2 in F Minor, Op. 21," and a series of scherzos, including: "Scherzo No. 1 in B Minor, Op. 20," "Scherzo No. 2 in B Flat Minor, Op. 31," "Scherzo No. 3 in C Sharp Minor, Op. 39" and "Scherzo No. 4 in E Major, Op. 54."

The digital version of the album and the deluxe edition for the Korean market include three bonus tracks: "Revolutionary" Etude, Op. 10 no. 12," "Impromptu No. 1, Op. 29" and "Nocturne, Op. 9 no. 2."

"When I was 11, I played a Chopin piece for the first time in my life. It was 'Waltz, Op. 18.' I found it to be very romantic, charming and joyful music …. it has been already six years since I won the Chopin competition. In the past six years, I would say my relationship with Chopin has matured and my relationship with his music is very progressive. It is not something I can define right now. I think it is going to be a lifelong journey. Every time I come back to it, I make new discoveries," he said in a video released on his YouTube channel in July.

Regarding the album and Chopin's Scherzo series, Cho wrote in a recent press release that, "It is very important to express the (music's) passion as the four works are very different from each other. But they can form a great combination together. I often played the set of works in recitals."

It is Cho's sixth Deutsche Grammaphon album, released about one year after his latest album, "The Wanderer," featuring pieces by Schubert, Berg and Liszt, in May of last year.

In 2015, he made an exclusive contract with the classical music label and released his first Deutsche Grammaphon album. The following year his album "Chopin: Piano Concerto No. 1, Ballades" was released. His latest album was recorded with the same orchestra, and completes Cho's recordings of the two Chopin piano concertos.

Cho had been planning to hold a recital tour across Korea to mark the release of the album, playing the works included on the latest album, as well as other rare works, such as Janacek's "Piano Sonata 1.X.1905," and Ravel's "Gaspard de la nuit," beginning from the first recital in Busan, originally scheduled for Aug 31.

However, the Busan performance and another recital, scheduled to be held in Incheon on Sept. 2, were both delayed to Sept. 16 and 9, respectively, due to the pianist's health problems. Cho had food poisoning and is receiving medical treatment, his agency Credia said. He is planning to hold recitals in Jeonju (Sept. 4), Daegu (Sept. 5), Seoul (Sept. 7), Yeosu (Sept. 11) and Suwon (Sept. 12) as per his original tour schedule.