Rachel Cheung, Piano

Rachel Cheung, Piano

Van Cliburn International Award winner

Rachel Cheung has been cheered by audiences in St. Petersburg, Russia; at the Chopin Festival in Duszniki, Poland; and in such other global centers of music as Kiev, Heidelberg, Geneva, Rouen, Paris, London, Hong Kong, Sydney, Jerusalem, Toronto, Fort Worth, and New York.

Critics are as enraptured with her playing as the public. As Culture Spot LA says, “Cheung is the complete package: skill, technique, artistry.”

Cheung’s repertoire is broad and varied. She regularly plays music by Rameau, Mozart, Beethoven, Liszt, Schumann, Chopin, Tchaikovsky, Janacek, and Ravel. Princeton audiences are in for a wonderful evening of music, played by a truly remarkable musician.

“A poet, but also a dramatist . . .  the most sophisticated and compelling music-making.” – The Dallas Morning News

Event Details

Saturday, June 22, 7:30 pm

General Admission $50 - $60
Students $15
Free "Meet the Artist" Reception follows the performance

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Jean-Philippe Rameau (1683-1764)
Selections from Pièces de Clavecin
Frederic Chopin (1810-1849)
Preludes, op. 28, nos. 7-16
Gabriel Fauré (1845-1924)
Nocturne No. 6 in D-flat Major, op. 63
Impromptu No. 2 in F Minor, op. 31
Maurice Ravel (1875-1937)
Toccata from Le tombeau de Couperin
Franz Schubert (1797-1828)
Sonata in B-flat Major, D. 960


Rachel Cheung’s program for her Princeton debut is in two parts: a selection of French keyboard music from the 18th through the 20th centuries; and a single towering masterpiece of the German romantic period. The pieces she has chosen take the listener through a kaleidoscope of moods. You can expect to experience melancholy, bright joy, profound reflection, resolve, languor, sheer sensuous pleasure, and so much more.

Her concert opens with the quicksilver turns of Rameau’s Pièces de Clavecin, which reveal that this French Baroque master of harmony was also a genius of expressive melodies. Chopin’s Preludes, influenced by Bach’s Well-Tempered Clavier, prove he was a musical innovator as well as a Romantic poet.

Gabriel Fauré’s passionate and moving Nocturne #6 looks back to Chopin’s famous nocturnes just as the older composer’s Preludes pay homage to Bach. Fauré’s Impromptu #2, on the other hand, has a tarantella rhythm, and is more lightly textured. It is followed by Ravel’s Toccata from Le Tombeau de Couperin (Couperin’s tomb or memorial), a light-hearted, up-tempo piece written in memory of a friend killed in World War I that also refers to one another French Baroque composer. When asked why the piece was not sad, Ravel answered, “the dead are sad enough.”

Schubert’s great B-flat major sonata is a long, deep emotional journey. It features a mesmerizing flow of gorgeous melody and the cyclic return of themes. You emerge from it as if from a dream.