There’s brilliant activity in “A Garland for Anne”, a piano cycle celebrating the poet Anne Stevenson, perfectly articulated by Chenyin Li.
The Independent On Sunday
“Her performance…was gritty, fiery and athletic, backed by a strong technique arsenal…”
Geoffrey Norris, The Daily Telegraph
“Chenyin Li…is a player of remarkable subtlety.”
Michael Tumely, The Scottish Herald
“The Chinese pianist Chenyin Li played Mozart with clarity as well as confidence – indeed, more than that. Her feeling for tempi was unerring, and in the pure solo passage she displayed great variation of expression. The solo passage of the second movement was a fine example of the soloist’s ability to combine expression, tempo, timing and technique. The great hall fell silent!”
“…The young Chinese pianist Chenyin Li played …at a high spiritual level, …the way you find it in recording by the grand old masters of the piano – but a very rare thing to find nowadays.”
“What clarity! What introvert calm! What energy! What a fantastic skill of colouring of the sound, which especially came through in the Adagio, where time came to a stand-still – to fly on with optimism and determination in the Finale. What a personality – at that age!”
John Christiansen, Jyllands-Posten
“…throughout her electrifying performance, [Chenyin Li] never lost an opportunity to underline the most scintillating moments with the sophistication of colour and tonal inflection that so often elude pianists facing such formidable technical hurdles…”
Gordon Fergus-Thompson, Piano Magazine
The Chinese pianist Chenyin Li has played with the orchestra twice before; the first time Mozart, the second time Rachmaninov at the Festival Week Classic. This time she gave a beautiful and spiritual interpretation of Mozart’s piano concerto No. 21 (with the Andante that he wrote for the film, as everybody knows). The famous, slow movement appeared wonderfully pure in a fine, united mutual understanding. The two outer movements, that sets this Andante into relief, were given by Chenyin Li with so many fine, living impulses, which for a good deal, but not all, were followed up by the conductor and the orchestra. The lightening up in the cadenza of the first movement and the impulse in the finale made one hold one’s breath.
Jyllands-Posten, 17th April 2010
“…Chenyin Li’s piano concerto was spellbinding, beautifully phrased and of exquisite dynamic subtlety, suggesting a maturity far beyond her 22 years…”
“…the technical extravagances of the Adagio [of the Barber Sonata] being shrugged away with seamless evenness between hands and beautifully placed melodic lines…Lizst’s exotic and exhilarating Spanish Rhapsody was a tour-de-force, the thrilled audience eventually going home after the calming encore of a gentle Beethoven Bagatelle.”
“…her breathless opening of the Romanze from Mozart’s D minor concerto, riveting attention with her poise and ardent finesse…demonstrated superior powers of expression, technical excellence and a grasp of the music’s spirit.”
The Evening Post, New Zealand
“…she is a pianist of poise and stylistic awareness, and already exudes that special quality granted to few of the myriad gifted pianists today.”
“…she has her own approach to the music, somewhere between an amiable dialogue and an arm wrestle. She coaxes, attacks and transforms the music, continually providing the audience with new insights…here is a pianist who has her own assured and perceptive approach. She understands the original intentions of the composers as well as bringing her own individual interpretation which invests the music with a new life.”
National Business Review
“…here is a very rare talent…”
New Zealand Herald
“…In fact, the new piano was worrying. Chenyin Li insisted on her adjustments well before interval, so she could do brilliant justice to Schubert’s Wanderer Fantasy. Li’s programme ran from some faux-flamenco Scarlatti to Ravel’s shimmering Miroirs and was, by far, the most rewarding evening of the (Auckland International Piano) festival.”
William Dart, New Zealand Herald
2007 Campillos International Piano Competition, First Prize.
2007 Ferrol International Piano Competition, Third Prize.
2006 Concurso Internacional de Piano Premio Jaén, Second Prize.
2001 Scottish International Piano Competition, First Prize.
2001 Sheffield Piano Competition, First Prize.
2001 Tunbridge Wells International Young Concert Artists Competition, Second Prize.
2000 Dudley Millennium Piano Competition, First Prize.
2000 Sheriff Piano Prize.
1999 International Intercollegiate Beethoven Prize, First Prize.
1999 Beethoven Society Gold Medal.
1999 Oxford Piano Recital competition, First prize.
1999 ‘Jacques Samuel’ Intercollegiate Competition, First Prize.
1998 New Zealand Young Musician Competition, First Prize.
1997 Aotea Center Performing Arts Award, Auckland.
1997 New Zealand National Piano Competition, First Prize.
1991 Maria Canals International Competition, Spain, Second Prize.