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June De Toth



Santa Fe, NM 87507
United States
F: 505-471-1003




June De Toth



June de Toth performs Bartok’s greatest piano works with an intensity, tonal color, and understanding that are unforgettable.

A history making event that is creating international attention. June de Toth is the first woman to record a cycle of Bartok’s greatest piano works in a 5-CD box set. Volumes I through V contain the 7 Sketches, Sonata 1926, 15 Hungarian Peasant Songs and Dances, 4 Dirges, Allegro Barbaro, Suite, 42 Hungarian Folk Songs, 3 Burlesques, 6 Roumanian Folk Dances, 10 Easy Pieces, 14 Bagatelles, 3 Rondos, Sonatina, 43 Slovakian Folk Songs, Petite Suite, 10 Roumanian Christmas Carols, 2 Elegies, Improvisations, 9 Little Pieces, and the Out of Doors Suite.

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"In her exhaustive survey of his solo piano works, June de Toth offers thoughtful and often eloquent readings that reject both hysteria and the kind of kamikaze approach of so many young piano lions. Its overall sobriety and discipline is such that the music speaks for itself. Capturing the essentially trochaic inflections of Hungarian speech with the knowing temperament of a native (Ms de Toth is full blood Hungarian) she lays out the keyboard songs with the patrician air of an old storyteller at a family gathering.Her performances are persuasive. Take particular note of her attractive readings of the 14 Bagatelles: these she portrays with a kind of arid simplicity that enhances their now playful, now lonely ethos. This set would make an ideal introduction to Bartok's piano music, especially if you are still unfamiliar with the bulk of it. These are urbane, honest, eminently intelligible interpretations that will draw the uninitiated into the texts of this extraordinarily rich music." -- AMERICAN RECORD GUIDE June de Toth, a Hungarian-American pianist whose teachers include Gulda and Firkusny, presents a nicely varied selection of the composer's piano works. Her rhythmic verve, supplemented by lots of drive, is especially good in the dances, and one notices, especially in softer passages, that her tonal and dynamic sensitivity serves Bartok particularly well. The third of the Dirges (Vol.1, track 17) is especially gripping, as is the atmospheric rendering of the final movement of the Op.14 Suite in Vol.2. The piano pickup is warm and intimate." -- STEREOPHILE"In her interpretations, de Toth reveals the "earthiness" of much of this music, as well as its secret personality. Consider de Toth's handling of the Poco Lento on track seventeen of volume one. Without resorting to the headlong savagery favored by some pianists, de Toth is nonetheless uncannily good at creating the bell-like chords (reminiscent of Rachmaninov's C# Minor Prelude) so crucial to the powerful development of the image of this miniature tone poem. Bartok was a master of rhythm and vitality, and mixed them well in a 20th century blender to concoct his catchy folk tunes and dances. Pianist de Toth herself proves to be an artful combiner, measuring requisite proportions of color, warmth, and energy in these pieces. The Three Burlesques falls strangely on the ear coming after the folksongs, yet de Toth is compelling here, as well as in the spell-casting episodes called Four Dirges. That variety of expression, being so finely conceived initially by Bartok and interpreted with insight and compassion by pianist de Toth, should offer grounds for deeper exploration and appreciation of Bartok by the general listener. The Third Sketch alone is worth the price of the disc. Recommended." -- CLASSICAL NET"Bartok’s Solo Piano Works: Volumes 1 through 5. These are definitive versions of fascinating pieces by a composer who deserves to be better known. June de Toth is a true champion." -- CLASSICAL MUSIC ARCHIVES




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