Top critical review
"A DISAPPOINTING DEBUT"
September 16, 2011
Given the national attention generated by Ms. Wang's Los Angeles appearance in a micro miniskirt, I rushed to Amazon.com to see if her playing warranted what many concert audiences would consider a brazen display of her physical attributes. Regrettably, I was profoundly disappointed! This is not to say that Ms. Wang does not have technical facility, but I found most of the other elements essential to artistic pianism sincerely lacking.
The CD began with the Chopin Sonata in B Flat Minor. After the first few bars, I went back to my computer to see if, perchance, the reverb adjustment had been turned all the way up. I moved the reverb and room size adjustments all the way down and adjusted the equalizer to a flat response. The sound was still terrible. I had to adjust the lower frequencies to get the piano to normal. But the major problem was the there was such an overuse of the damper pedal until the music sounded as if it were performed in the bathroom. Without judicious use of the pedal, there is no artistry. There was speed, but never a musical concept that overcame the perception of noisy fingers. I never sensed any musical imagination or subtlety. My concept of this work began with my wonderful teacher, Mark Fax in 1947, and has developed through exposure to all the great Chopin performers from Rachmaninoff to Zimerman. Only her last movement could be considered excellent. Her Ligeti Etudes were facile but not distinguished by the needed contrasts of touch that was so apparent in the performance of the Second Place Winner in the recent Tchaikovsky Competition. Similarly, the Scriabin was amorphous and ill-defined. The Liszt Sonata, admittedly not a great piece, was non-descript in her hands and only fair/good technically.
Both the Liszt and the Scriabin were plagued by over pedaling.
While it is very possible that as a male, my perception of these performances would have been far more positive were I looking at the beautiful Ms. Wang, judging on the basis of the CD alone, she gets a resounding thumbs down!