Daniel Barenboim is considered one of the greatest pianists and conductors of our time and may well be called a living legend. For his efforts towards reconciliation in the Middle East as well as his musical achievements, Barenboim has been the recipient of many prizes and honours. 2014 marks a very special anniversary for this extraordinary musician: 60 years as recording artist. To celebrate this occasion, Deutsche Grammophon and Daniel Barenboim will release a new recording of Franz Schubert’s Piano Sonatas. The sonatas are wonderful romantic music, and after recording them, Barenboim summarizes: “Schubert’s sonatas are a revelation. The music laughs and cries, it is at the same time sad and cheerful.”
The Rachmaninov Piano Concertos performed by Vladimir Ashkenazy and the London Symphony Orchestra, conducted by André Previn are among the most iconic recordings in the Decca Classics catalogue. For the first time in over 40 years, the recordings have been remastered in ultra-high quality 96kHz 24-bit audio at Abbey Road Studios.
Our acclaimed series continues with one of the acknowledged masters of Romantic music, Sergei Rachmaninov. This album is taken from live performances in England between 1999 and 2005 by Russian pianist Sergei Dukachev and includes some favourite Preludes and Etudes, the Second Sonata and the relatively rarely-heard Variations. Dukachev is gaining an enthusiastic following in the UK as well as in his native Russia, and the brilliance of these concert performances demonstrates why.
Nielsen’s piano works are among the most original and characteristic in the repertoire. There is no mistaking his idiosyncratic musical voice, his sense of joy of discovery and invention, and spirit of imagination and adventure. Nielsen’s complete piano music encompasses the full diversity and range of his creative output. Though he never aspired to brilliance as a performer, Nielsen’s piano works are nevertheless marked by his intimate knowledge of the instrument …..
As promised, here comes some more Bavouzet… For lovers of Debussy, and great piano playing, this is essential listening !
'Absorbing playing from a French pianist with something new to say about these much-recorded piano masterpieces, and an interpretative range that calls upon clarity, haziness and Lisztian panache as appropriate.'
Telegraph ‘CDs of the year’
'Bavouzet plays even such neglected gems as the Ballad and Valse romantique as though he were suspended in a dream-world, revelling in the music’s multi-layered sonic terracing with a captivating range of keyboard touch and micro-pedalling…. Playing that takes us through new realms of experience.'
'Diapason d’Or 2008'
Edit: Now in Mp3!!!!
The Beethoven set includes the first two piano concertos (No. 1 in two versions, one with cadenzas supplied by Glenn Gould) together with Beethoven’s only completed opera in its final version: Fidelio. He always had a strong and fervent view of freedom and its resonance still rings true today nearly two hundred years since its first performance.
This live Appassionata, from a Moscow recital of 1959, is one of the most thrilling piano performances ever recorded. Sviatoslav Richter fills every moment of the first movement with intense drama, creates the illusion of total repose in the central variations, and then takes off in the finale with an exhibition of musical virtuosity and ever-increasing tension that becomes almost unbearably intense (and unbelievably fast and accurate). The studio Pathétique is quite fine, and the Fantasy (sung in Russian!) well performed by all but still rather quaint in its effect. But don't miss that Appassionata!