Celestial Blue

Celia García-García

Celestial Blue is the first solo album in the history of the celesta, a relatively unknown instrument that resembles a piano at first sight but surprises the listeners with a sound reminiscent of little bells.

“I first heard about the existence of the celesta during my piano studies in San Sebastián, Spain, in 2004, playing the original version of Debussy’s Les chansons de Bilitis: a dancer, two harps, two flutes, celesta, and a pseudo translation of Ancient Greek poems. So enchanting!

Normally playing celesta is just an incidental experience for an aspiring pianist, too busy unraveling the difficulties of endless piano repertoire. As a matter of fact, many professional pianists have not even as much as played one key of a celesta. As I continued my studies, I moved to The Netherlands and dedicated my Masters to orchestral playing. Playing celesta is an important task of the orchestral pianist: in symphonic repertoire the celesta shines.

At first sight, the celesta may look like a piano because of its keyboard, but the qualities of its sound make it a completely different instrument. It has a maximum of 5,5 octaves; that is 66 keys opposed to 88 on a piano. The attentive listener will notice small differences from the original scores in this album, for example in the left hand of the Arabesque and the Rêverie; and in most arrangements, there is a change or jump in octave registers respecting the original to fit the composition into the range of the celesta.

The celesta is dreamy, heavenly, and invokes magical fairytale scenes. This album is a journey that highlights the dream and the magic, but touches upon some darker, desolated and gloomy contrast along the way, before arriving at a soothing and calming end.

It is celestial. It is blue. Celestial Blue.” – Celia García-García


Performer: Celia García-García
Recording & mastering engineer: Brendon Heinst
Assistant engineer: Bart Koop
Editor: Hans Erblich
Liner notes: Celia García-García
Photography & artwork: Brendon Heinst