Pianist Reis Taylor Dixon was an usher at the Symphony Hall in Birmingham dreaming of performing on the stage there one day. Moving on to 2020 his beautiful, melancholic and inspired work Awake To Dream was released into a market that was high on anticipation, to see what this pianist, self-taught initially, was to deliver. His first album Words Unspoken was launched at the Birmingham Symphony Hall in 2016 to a standing ovation: his second Awake To Dream was recorded there: Dreams do indeed come true.
Much emotion has been crafted into the collection, which as he says signifies the point that to be able to dream, to realise those dreams, you need to be awake, to embrace life no matter what it has to deliver; to be able to accept and forgive, both lessons that are difficult and filled with tragedy, despair and eventual acceptance. To this end, the cover of the album created by Mark Grieves, is significant.
Classical piano forms the basis of the contemporary work which blends the passage of time, healing, forgiveness and creation together in a seamless flow of captivating hauntingly, beautiful compositions which reach out with a gentle hand.
Having listened to Awake To Dream many times over the past month, by the end of the album the feeling of calm and peace achieved every time is wonderfully enriching. This may not have been the intent of the work but is certainly the result created as the pieces gently unfold.
Although the compositions may have come from an emotionally dark place, the subtle, healing magic of music has been interwoven in the melody. The intriguing fact with Awake To Dream is it was recorded at the Birmingham Symphonic Hall during the COVID outbreak; a place of great significance in Taylor-Dixons life, as he grew up in Birmingham, and launched his career on the stage with his performance of Ludovico Einaudi’s I giorni.
In an album of exquisite pieces Clare De Lune Extracts (Claude Debussy)has been tucked away at the end of the original pieces, which portrays the absolute talent Reis Taylor- Dixon has at his command. Awake To Dream was sought after by three recording company’s and certainly does not disappoint.