A Stunning Debut!
“Butterfly In the Snow” is pianist/composer Tiana’s debut CD, and what an auspicious beginning it is! Fifteen original piano solos grace this impressive collection and draw from a variety of sources for inspiration. Tiana’s Greek heritage could partially explain the passion she puts into her music and the beautiful poetry that graces the liner notes, but I was just blown away to learn that she took piano lessons for only a year as a child. The grace and complexity of her music strikes me as that of a pianist with classical training from an early age. Many mostly self-taught pianists give themselves away with a lazy left hand, but Tiana’s is fully developed and very expressive. Her playing has the natural flow and emotional impact of someone who has spent many years pouring out her deepest thoughts and dreams at the piano. The majority of the pieces are very calming and reflect a sense of optimism, but the music itself is far too pensive and deeply personal to be called “ear candy.” Like all things of beauty, the music is tinged with melancholy. It is also music of substance that is accessible and affecting. Produced and recorded by Scott D. Davis and mastered by Paul Speer, “Butterfly In the Snow” is an exceptionally good debut.
The CD begins with “Serrano,” a gorgeous and dreamy piece full of passion and romance. Suggesting the warmth of the sun near the deep blue ocean in some exotic place and the thrill of new romance, it’s a stunning opener. “Ela Konta Mou (Come Closer)” is a sensuous piece with touches of Greek and maybe a little Spanish rhythm and just a hint of tragedy in the melody. “Starsailor” is a favorite. An intense feeling of yearning carries this piece on a dream. The title song is incredible. Darkly beautiful and passionate, the flowing and graceful melody speaks volumes about the soul of the composer. “Whisper of Spring” is another favorite, hinting at the new life, warmth, and promise of that time of rebirth and renewal. “Clocks” is different from the other tracks in that it is less melodic and a bit more abstract, but still very graceful and urgent. “Blue Morpho” is also freer and very fluid - reflective and bittersweet. Unabashedly romantic and full of love, “You Color Everything” is graceful and heartfelt. As good as the fourteen other tracks are, Tiana saved the best for last. “Twilight Wings” seems even more intimate than the title song, revealing the heart’s deepest thoughts and dreams as well as its own personal truth.
“Butterfly In the Snow” is a must for lovers of powerfully emotional solo piano that can also be very delicate and fragile. This is a keeper! Highly recommended!