- Pieces (6) for piano, 4 hands, Op. 94
- Burleskes (6) for piano, 4 hands, Op. 58
- Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Beethoven for 2 pianos, Op. 86
Duo d'Accord, the piano team of Shao-Yin Huang and Sebastian Euler, winners of the 2001 Murray Dranoff piano competition, chose to devote their first recording to the music of Max Reger. Not only is this some of the least often heard of Reger's output, but these works are not even often performed by duo pianists. As expected, the music is dense and at times cerebral, but it is not coldly unemotional. Huang and Euler manage to make sense out of the complexities and find sensitively expressive moments in all the seriousness of the "Six Pieces, Op. 94." The duo brings out the yearning melodies and drama as if these were by Brahms, and although there is some bombast, as in the first of the "Six Pieces," Duo d'Accord handles it with maturity. Huang and Euler even find some humor and playfulness in the "Burleskes, Op. 58," particularly the last, which quotes the children's song "Did You Ever See a Lassie." The "Variations and Fugue on a Theme of Beethoven," better known in Reger's slightly shorter orchestral version, are as serious as the "Pieces, Op. 94," and more challenging. There are a couple of passages where Huang and Euler hadn't quite worked out what was important and needed to be brought out more, and in the final part of the fugue it sounds like they are using all of their physical strength to make it as brilliant as possible, but are just barely able to maintain a consistent strength to the end. This is a tough program, but with it Duo d'Accord prove not only its promising and fine capabilities as a duo, but also that Reger's music deserves more attention.