Lee, Siu Hei Alvin; Wiest, Kirsten Ashley
This is an album of four contemporary works for soprano and piano. Three are by superb but less well-known, the fourth by Gyorgy Ligetti, who needs no introduction. These works are all beautifully performed by soprano Kirsten Ashley Wiest, and pianist Siu Hei Lee. Award-winning coloratura soprano Kirsten Ashley Wiest is firmly committed to the continuous evolution of classical vocal music. Her “bright, dazzling vocal technique” (San Diego Story) has captured the attention of composers worldwide, resulting in numerous world premiere performances including works by James Erber (UK), Lei Liang (CN/US), Veronika Krausas (CA/US), Gérard Pape (FR), Rand Steiger (US), Jeffrey Holmes (US), Jack Van Zandt (US), and Annie Hsieh (AU), among many others. A London-based music researcher, pianist, scholar and teacher, Alvin/ Siu Hei has been praised for his extraordinary performance virtuosity and impressive balance in chamber music (Paul Muller, Sequenza21). As a researcher, he wrote on the commedia dell’arte character Pierrot and detailed the social and political meanings of the modernist character from the late 19th century onwards. As a native of Hong Kong and previously a resident of California, Siu Hei also studied the popular music of China and Hong Kong in the light of politics and postcolonialism, as well as contemporary music with a focus on Chinese American composers.