FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
VIRTUOSO PIANIST SHIZ’KA STEPS ONTO THE RECORDING STAGE WITH HER DEBUT ALBUM, SCARLATTI SONATAS
(Tuesday, February 26, 2019 – New York, New York) – Kéze Records announces the release of ShiZ’ka’s debut album SCARLATTI SONATAS featuring fourteen of the renowned composer Giuseppe Domenico Scarlatti’s sonatas. Playing classical piano since the age of four, ShiZ’ka is an acknowledged Scarlatti authority who has studied with renowned Japanese teachers Toshimi Sakou, Keita Kosaka, Makoto Yamahata, and Mako Okamoto. She has also studied at prominent music schools including Doshisha Women’s College of Liberal Arts and Berklee College of Music.
ShiZ’ka comes from a family of musicians. Her parents Nobue and Toshiyuki Saeki are both classical musicians (bassoonist and oboist respectively) and run a very successful music school, Poco A Poco, in Japan. Since ShiZ’ka was very young, she possessed a deep passion to perform. Much later, she was profoundly inspired by the nobility of Emil Gilels’ performances.
She supplemented her classical training by studying with famed jazz pianists Makoto Takenaka and Yoko Yamamoto. Her early exposure to jazz has influenced her approach towards classical music, in what some are calling an “individual sensibility to timing and rhythm, with clarity and articulation.”
When asked why Scarlatti, ShiZ’ka explains, “When I started learning the Sonatas, my hands and fingers naturally played each piece as if I had played them all my life. It was a body, mind and soul connection for me. Hearing a recording of Elaine Comparone playing the K118 on the harpsichord impressed me so much that I made it a goal to play the Sonatas on the piano as brilliantly and as gracefully as Ms Comparone did on the piece’s originally intended instrument.”
The fourteen sonatas from Scarlatti’s repertoire have been chosen by ShiZ’ka and were recorded in random order. After the recordings were completed, ShiZ’ka took an intuitive approach to organizing the order for the sonatas so the album would have an organic flow, rendering each sonata relevant to the other, while allowing each sonata to stand on its own.
International Piano Magazine recently stated in its review, “This is a refreshing brace of Scarlatti sonatas. The order of the Sonatas works beautifully; there is no doubting that ShiZ’ka has a resonance with Scarlatti’s style.”
ShiZ’ka now resides in New York with her two year old son Emil and her husband, Edmund Arkus. She has recently performed at the Mount Sinai Guggenheim Atrium in NYC, Third Street Music School Settlement, Tenri Cultural Institute and The National Opera Center.
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