June 20, 2024

Pianist Charlotte Hu presents ‘Liszt: Metamorphosis’

PENTATONE releases Liszt: Metamorphosis, together with Charlotte Hu, in July 2024.

An Emotional and Spiritual Journey Through Liszt’s Virtuosic Works

Pianist Charlotte Hu (formerly known as Ching-Yun Hu) presents Liszt: Metamorphosis, her debut album for PENTATONE. On it, Charlotte explores Hungarian composer and virtuoso pianist Franz Liszt’s chameleonic and evolving approach to composing – the metamorphosis of his music spanning from his early works inspired by Beethoven to the abstract tonality of his later works, as well as his incredible ability to transcribe and transform the music of other composers he admired.

This digital release includes Liszt’s Les jeux d’eau à la Villa d’Este (The Fountains of the Villa d’Este) from 1877; his Lieder Transcriptions of art songs by Schumann and Schubert from 1838 and 1848; Three Concert Études from 1845-49; and Rhapsodie espagnole (Spanish Rhapsody) from 1858. A perennial favourite with Hu’s audiences, this repertoire showcases the important roles that literature, spirituality, and travel play in Liszt’s music for solo piano. Nuanced and multifaceted, Charlotte takes listeners through the evolution of Franz Liszt through his many creative stages: a storytelling of an emotional and spiritual journey.

Described as a “first-class talent” (Philadelphia Inquirer) possessing a “superstar quality – musical, energetic, and full of flair” (Jerusalem Post), Taiwanese-American pianist Charlotte Hu has been praised by audiences and critics across the globe for her dazzling virtuosity, captivating musicianship, and magnetic stage presence. A graduate of The Juilliard School, she was a top prize winner at the 12th Arthur Rubinstein International Piano Competition. She has astounded audiences at many of the world’s most prestigious venues, including Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center, Wigmore Hall, the Concertgebouw, Taipei National Concert Hall, and Osaka’s Symphony Hall.

“Metamorphosis” is a profound and transformative process that lies at the heart of my Liszt album. It mirrors both the metamorphic nature of the repertoire and my personal and professional journey.

This journey is reflected in my choice of repertoire, spanning from Liszt’s initial virtuosic writing to his later emotional and philosophical compositions. Liszt pushed the boundaries of harmony and form, creating revolutionary piano writing that is both symphonic and introspective. I want to take listeners on a journey through the intricate and dramatic storytelling of each work, showcasing the storied transformation from the first track to the last. Every musical choice was made to surprise, comfort, and savor.

With this album’s release, I also took a metamorphosis of my own – a new name! When I came to America from Taiwan at the age of 14, my Chinese name was translated to Ching-Yun. Though musical sounding, the translation from Chinese did not reflect its origin. I’ve long felt the need to embrace my evolving identity. To better reflect this new direction, I have chosen Charlotte Hu as my new stage name.

Having lived as Ching-Yun in the media for decades and through so many important life milestones, it was not an easy decision. However, with time, experience, and self-realization comes strength to embrace change. Charlotte, with French origins, means freedom. As a Taiwanese-American, Charlotte embodies the core of my personality and lifelong aspiration to have the courage to act, think, and speak without hindrance or restraint.

Charlotte Hu

Digital Release Date19 JULY 2024

Physical Release: JULY 2024

Released in digital formats for streaming and high-resolution downloads.