Press

“In describing the abstract art that inspired his solo piano piece, Asagao, François Morel remarks on its “lack of nostalgia for a figurative model,” and the phrase suits both Morel’s sonorous music and the timbral sensitivity with which pianist Yoko Hirota approaches it. Some of the works on this disc are at least obliquely representative, however, from Brian Current’s virtuosic Sungods to Brian Cherney’s Nachtstücke, where one suspects a subtle nostalgia for the intimate salon concert. We marvel at Hirota’s dazzling precision in Sungods, but something less prismatic in Nachtstücke would not go amiss: fewer facets, more curves.”
Elissa Poole, The Globe and Mail

 

“Voces Boreales is a record of which the entire creative team, and all of us music-lovers in this northern country, can be justly proud. […] Ms. Hirota is a specialist in contemporary repertoire, and her dedication to this field is clear in the thoroughly contemporary sensibility she brings to her interpretations. Sensitive and searching sonic exploration of the instrument takes the place of post-Romantic expressivity — Ms. Hirota and her chosen composers are perfectly in step in this regard. […] This record is a joy to listen to from beginning to end. Highly recommended.”
Nic Gotham, The WholeNote

 

“I admire the sensitivity of Ms. Hirota’s touch, and the sinuosity of her flow. […] Yoko Hirota is an inquisitive artist, with a flair for the eccentric, the quirky, the playful. I liked having a second go-round with her work on these pieces.”
Stanley Fefferman, Opus One Review

 

“Ms. Hirota is a Schoenberg specialist, and she opened her recital with Fünfe Klavierstucke (1923), the set that ends with Schoenberg’s first, revolutionary, 12-note cell of serial music. The work is too well-known to need any comment on it here. However Yoko Hirota’s performance was quite magical.”
OpusOneReview , Toronto

 

Hiroka’s performance of this music (Schoenberg Piano Music and his 17 Fragments) is bold and thoughtful. Her interest in the composer’s use of timbre and sonority is easily apparent in her playing. There is careful attention to nuance, to articulation, and a wonderful range of sonorous effects in the music.
CANADIAN ASSOCIATION OF MUSIC LIBRARIES REVIEW

This recording (Schoenberg Piano Music and his 17 Fragments), by the Japanese-Canadian pianist Yoko Hirota, . . .precise and keenly projective performances.
WHOLENOTE MAGAZINE, Toronto

In Joy (23 musicians and tape) of 1990, Magnus Lindberg gave prominence to piano and celesta, played distinctively by Yoko Hirota.
THE GAZETTE, Montreal

The last of Arnold Schoenberg’s Fragments for Piano is a pensive, expressive miniature that does its work in scarcely a minute.
THE GLOBE AND MAIL, Toronto [Essential Tracks]

Wonderful composers all, their spirits must have felt delight in Saturday’s well structured recital performed by Canadian pianist Yoko Hirota.
DAILY PRESS, Timmins

ARGUS OBSERVER, Oregon
Her interpretation of Beethoven and Mendelssohn was sensitive and exhibited the highest level of proficiency.

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The Ontario Arts Council is an agency of the Government of Ontario

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