Pianist Stephen Hough’s Dream Album To Be Released by Hyperion Records, June 1

NEW YORK, NEW YORK (May 24, 2018) — Pianist Stephen Hough’s Dream Album, which casts him in the role of performer, composer, and transcriber, is released by Hyperion Records on Friday, June 1. This recording is the seventh in a series of “Album” releases from Mr. Hough that began with The Piano Album in 1993 and continued most recently with the French Album in 2012. Like all of his Albums, Mr. Hough’s Dream Album juxtaposes works by different composers, in this case 27 short pieces—mostly less than five minutes apiece—by over a dozen composers, including Liszt, Dvořák, and Sibelius. As if from a dream, this collection is a free association of musical thoughts that bear personal meaning for Mr. Hough—from favorite encores, to pieces from his childhood, to works written for friends. Pre-orders are currently available via Amazon and iTunes.

Mr. Hough’s accompanying notes offer a glimpse at what makes each piece special to him. For instance:
• In the Steppes (No. 2 of Memories of Childhood, Op. 11) by Julius Isserlis (1888-1968): “It was a scholarship named after this Russian pianist which enabled me to study in New York. Years later I met his cellist grandson…”
• By the sleepy lagoon by Eric Coates (1886-1957): “Desert Island Discs, the beloved BBC radio programme, has used this wistful piece as its theme music for over seventy-five years now. It lies deep in my subconscious memory and I’ve always wanted to play it on the piano.”
• Jeunes filles au jardin (No. 5 of Scènes d’enfants) by Mompou: A “slender masterpiece [that] takes me back to my own childhood. The first record we bought when I started to learn the piano was a mixed album, much like this one, on which Clive Lythgoe played this little gem. Thus I knew Mompou before I knew Mozart, and this piece has been my companion as an encore for over forty years of concerts now. I’ve never found another which could surpass its gentle charm. It was one of the first pieces I learned with my infant fingers and I hope it will be the last piece I play when my own career (was it all a dream?) finally comes to a close.”

While the album’s repertoire dates mostly from the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth centuries, Mr. Hough himself is the most represented composer on the recording. Two of his featured works are waltzes—the first a metric transformation of Johann Strauss I’s Radetzky March and the second based on a theme of Paganini, made “heavy with tobacco smoke and the haze of a nightclub.” The other compositions were inspired by people in his life. The album also includes his transcriptions and arrangements of traditional music and works ranging from Dvořák to lesser-known composers Henry Love (1895-1976), Ludwig Minkus (1826-1917), Vasily Solovyov-Sedoy (1907-1979), and  (1870-1950).
Excerpts from the recording:

Mr. Hough has recorded over 60 albums for London-based Hyperion Records, and his recordings have garnered such international prizes as the Deutscher Schallplattenpreis, Diapason d’Or, Monde de la Musique, several Grammy nominations, and eight Gramophone Magazine Awards, including the 1996 and 2003 “Record of the Year” Awards, and the 2008 “Gold Disc” Award, which named his complete Saint-Saëns piano concertos the best recording of the past 30 years. His 2012 recording of the complete Chopin waltzes received the Diapason d’Or de l’Année, France’s most prestigious recording award, and his 2004 live recording of the Rachmaninoff piano concertos was the fastest-selling recording in Hyperion’s history. Recent releases include his first all-Debussy recording, which marked 100 years since the composer’s death, and an album of solo works by Scriabin and Janáček.

Stephen Hough has distinguished himself as a true polymath, not only securing a reputation as an insightful pianist, but also as a writer and composer. In 2001, he was the first classical performing artist to receive a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship and, in 2013, he was named a Commander of the British Empire. He has appeared with most of the major American and European orchestras and plays recitals regularly in major halls and concert series around the world. As a writer, he has contributed to The New York Times, The Guardian, The Times (UK), Gramophone, and BBC Music Magazine, among other publications, and for seven years, his blog for The Telegraph was one of the most popular and influential forums for cultural discussion. His first novel, The Final Retreat, was published in March 2018 by Sylph Editions, and his musical compositions are published by Josef Weinberger Ltd. To learn more about Mr. Hough, visit stephenhough.com.
# # #
Release date: June 1, 2018
Stephen Hough, Piano
1. STEPHEN HOUGH (b1961) – Radetzky Waltz [5’20]
2. HENRY LOVE (1895-1976), arr. HOUGH – Das alte Lied [2’26]
3. JULIUS ISSERLIS (1888-1968) – In the Steppes (No 2 of Memories of Childhood, Op 11) [1’17]
4. LUDWIG MINKUS (1826-1917), arr. HOUGH – Kitri’s variation (Extract from Don Quixote) [1’18]
5. LUDWIG MINKUS (1826-1917), arr. HOUGH (b1961) – Dulcinea’s variation (Extract from Don Quixote) [2’06]
6. VASILY SOLOVYOV-SEDOY (1907-1979), arr. HOUGH – Moscow Nights [2’10]
7. LISZT – Harmonies du soir (No 11 of Douze Études d’exécution transcendante, S139) [9’01]
8. LISZT – Étude in F minor (No 10 of Douze Études d’exécution transcendante, S139) [5’01]
9. ALBÉNIZ – Capricho Catalan (No 5 of España ‘6 hojas de album’, Op 165) [3’40]
10. PONCE – Intermezzo No 1 [2’19]
11. DOHNÁNYI – Rhapsody in C major: Vivace (No 3 of Four Rhapsodies Op 11) [4’47]
12. SIBELIUS – Kuusi ‘The spruce’ (No 5 of Five Pieces, Op 75) [2’40]
13. WILLIAM SEYMER (1890-1964) – Solöga ‘Sun-eye’ (No 3 of Sommarcroquiser ‘Summer sketches’, Op 11) [3’00]
14. CHAMINADE – Pas des écharpes (No 3 of Suite de piano) [4’52]
15. HOUGH – Niccolo’s Waltz [2’22]
16. HOUGH – Osmanthus Romp [1’05]
17. HOUGH – Osmanthus Reverie [2’22]
18. ERIC COATES (1886-1957) – By the sleepy lagoon [3’19]
19. ARTHUR F TATE (1870-1950), arr. HOUGH – Somewhere a voice is calling [2’36]
20. TRADITIONAL, arr. HOUGH – Matilda’s Rhumba [2’13]
21. HOUGH Iver-song ‘Lullaby’ [1’36]
22. DVOŘÁK – Humoresque in G flat major: Poco lento e grazioso (No 7 of Eight Humoresques Op 101 B187) [3’07]
23. DVOŘÁK, arr. HOUGH – Songs my mother taught me (No 4 of Gypsy Songs, Op 55) [2’01]
24. ELGAR – Salut d’amour Op 12 [2’54]
25. TRADITIONAL, arr. HOUGH – Blow the wind southerly [2’17]
26. HOUGH – Lullaby[1’21]
27. MOMPOU – Jeunes filles au jardin (No 5 of Scènes d’enfants) [2’42]
Total timing: 79:52

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