"Just a handful of violinists, living or dead, have the freedom, presence and imagination commanded by the playing of Laurent Korcia. Korcia has it all: magisterial style, technique, charisma, ideas, charm..." - Le Monde.
Film music, whether it paraphrases, complements or subverts the images on the screen, has been adding emotional impact to the cinema since it was first used in 1908. Laurent Korcia takes us on a magical journey through the immense repertoire of film music, from the beginning to the end of the 20th century.
The album celebrates 100 years of music on film with stylish arrangements of unforgettable film scores by composers from Vivaldi and Gershwin to Shifrin and Morricone. The programme includes the Rondo capricioso by Camille Saint Saëns (Louis Malle: Au revoir, les enfants), who wrote the first music specially composed for a film: L'assassinat du duc de Guise, premiered in Paris in November 1908.
Other themes on the new recording include Henry Mancini's Moon River (Breakfast at Tiffany's), Nino Rota's Speak Softly Love (The Godfather), Gerardo Matos Rodriguez's La Cumparsita (Some Like it Hot), Ennio Morricone's Cinema Paradiso, Scott Joplin's The Entertainer (The Sting), and Charles Chaplin's Smile (Modern Times). Korcia performs in varying configurations with the European Chamber Orchestra Löchen under the baton of Michael Wendeberg, as well as with a quintet, with piano and with accordion and double bass.
The CD was recorded in parallel with a gala sold-out performance recorded for television at the Folies Bergère in Paris in September 2008. The concert was part of Le Centenaire de la Musique de Film, organised in conjunction with international rights associations, the French Ministry of Culture and the European Association of Film Music Composers.
Laurent Korcia performs regularly with leading European orchestras under such conductors as Semyon Bychkov, Jean-Claude Casadesus, Stéphane Denève, Charles Dutoit, Valery Gergiev, Louis Langrée, Kurt Masur, John Nelson, Sakari Oramo, Michel Plasson, Yutaka Sado, Vladimir Spivakov, Yan-Pascal Tortelier and Walter Weller. Korcia is known for his unusual programmes and creative collaborations. His solo violin recital programmes typically range from Bach to contemporary music and he performs regularly in jazz and pop venues.
Mentored from childhood by the renowned pianist Pierre Barbizet, Laurent Korcia studied at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris with Michèle Auclair, herself a pupil of Jacques Thibaud and George Enesco. A First Prize laureate of the Paris Conservatoire, Laurent continued his studies with Felix Andrievsky at the Royal College of Music in London, where he took the Queen Elizabeth prize. On winning the Paganini Competition in Genoa at the age of eighteen, he had the honour of performing on Paganini's Guarneri del Gesu. Other distinguished prizes he has won include the Grand Prix at the Concours Jacques Thibaud, first prize at the International Zino Francescatti Competition, SACEM's George Enesco Prize (1998) and the Grand Priz of the Academie Charles Cross. Korcia was also a laureate of London's Young Concert Artists Trust. He was given the title of Chevalier des Arts et Lettres and named Instrumental Soloist of the Year at the Victoires de la Musique 2002.
Korcia is set to tour France in March and April 2009 and the United States in May and June 2009.
Since 1999, Laurent Korcia has played on the Zahn Stradivarius (1719), loaned to him by the prestigious French group LVMH, Moët-Hennessy-Louis Vuitton.
"[Korcia's] passion and instinct grab you from the very first bars. Just like those turn-of-the-century virtuosos Elman, Heifetz, Ysaÿe or Kubelik, whose style, sound and vibrato were a real trademark, you can't mistake Korcia for another. For this reason, he stands out among his contemporaries." - Diapason
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