Prima Facie

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Otto Zykan plays Schoenberg and Scriabin: Duncan Honeybourne plays Zykan (PFCD215/216) £15/£20

Otto Zykan – piano
Duncan Honeybourne – piano


CD 1

[1-6] Schönberg: Suite für Klavier op 25 [10:11]
[7-9] Drei Klavierstücke op 11 [10:12]
[10-11] Zwei Stücke für Klavier op 33 [04:49]
[12-17] Sechs Kleine Klavierstücke op 19 [04:48]
[18-22] Fünf Stücke für Klavier op 23 [09:54]
[23] Scriabin: Prelude op 15 nr. 5 [01:15]
[24] Prelude op 15 nr. 2 [00:50]
[25] Prelude op 11 nr.14 [00:55]
[26] Prelude op 22 nr 2 [01:08]
Total: [46:40

CD 2

[1] Zykan: Nachtstück [03:08]
[2] Choral [04:26]
[3] Stücke 1 [01:33]
[4] Stücke 2 [03:15]
[5] Stücke 3 [03:22]
[6] Gelenkte Improvisation [17:55]
[7] Nachtstück [05:27]
[8] Skizzen: Ruhig, legato [03:14]
[9] Skizzen: Symphony [05:13]
[10] Skizzen: Ruhig [06:18]
[11] Nachgereichte Kadenz ohne Konzert [17:05]
Total: [71:03]

Zykan CD

This unique 2-CD recording is produced by Prima Facie in association with the Austrian Broadcasting Corporation (ORF). It celebrates the genius of the Viennese composer, pianist and writer Otto M Zykan (1935-2006), whose historic recordings of Schoenberg’s piano music are re-released here for the first time since their original issue on LP in 1970. Acclaimed by the German critic Joachim Kaiser as “captivating technically and spiritually in equal measure”, Zykan’s performances are important documents reflecting a lifelong dedication to Schoenberg’s art. In this important release revealing the breadth of Zykan’s musicianship and creativity, they are coupled with a new recording of Zykan’s own complete solo piano music, played by the British pianist Duncan Honeybourne. Honeybourne was asked to record Zykan’s piano music for the coupling by the composer’s partner, Austrian musicologist and radio producer Irene Suchy. Duncan Honeybourne’s link with the Viennese tradition comes through his former professor, Rosemarie Wright, Zykan’s contemporary in the class of Bruno Seidlhofer, the most prominent piano teacher in Vienna.


Disc One:
A recording by the Austrian Broadcasting Corporation (Radio Österreich 1)
Recorded in the studios of Österreichischer Rundfunk (ÖRF), Wien/Vienna, 16th and 19th March 1969
Producer: Gerhard Lang, Sound Engineer: Kurt Kindl

Disc Two:
Tracks 1 and 11 recorded at St Elizabeth's Church, Ashley, Cheshire, UK, 29th March and 26th May 2023
Piano/Klavier: Bösendorfer
All other tracks recorded at Holy Trinity Church, Hereford, UK, 17th July 2022
Piano/Klavier: Steinway
Producer and Sound Engineer: Steve Plews, Mastering: Simon Crosby Buttle

With thanks to Duncan Honeybourne for his dedication to Zykan’s music; to Steve Plews for his willingness to act as producer; to Elke Tschaikner for providing the tapes; to Martin Bernhofer for his essential work in facilitating this project; to Hannes Heher for providing historical documents; and to Veronika Weiher for her work on the contract.

Duncan Honeybourne

Duncan Honeybourne sitting at a piano
Duncan Honeybourne enjoys a diverse profile as pianist and in music education. Following his concerto debuts at Symphony Hall, Birmingham, and the National Concert Hall, Dublin, he made recital debuts in London, Paris and at international festivals in Belgium and Switzerland. Commended for his “gripping performances” (The Times), “glittering performances” (International Piano) and “great technical facility and unfailing imagination” (Musical Opinion), Duncan has toured extensively as soloist and chamber musician throughout the UK, Ireland and Europe, broadcasting frequently on BBC Radio 3 and radio networks worldwide. His many recordings reflect his long association with 20th and 21st century British piano music, and his debut recording as a harpsichordist was released in 2023. Duncan Honeybourne teaches piano and chamber music at the Royal Academy of Music Junior Academy and is a Lecturer in Piano at the University of Southampton.