Winner of Prix de l'Académie Charles Cros, this set brings together Robert Schumann's complete works for solo piano. This great cycle benefited from having been recorded in the unique acoustics of La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland, by the same recording engineer, Jean-Marc Laisné.
"The years spent by Robert Schumann and his Clara in Dresden were a time of perfect happiness, and in 1849 the composer, like a teenager, presented his dearest with a Romanze pervaded by intense passion. An outstanding recording of Schumann’s complete works for violoncello and piano from this time transports us up to the couple’s seventh heaven. The Schumann specialist Aya Ishihara plays Clara’s role at a Steinway grand piano (1901), and her experienced duo partner Klaus Storck is heard as the emotionally profound cellist playing an Italian “Spiritus Sorsana” cello (made in 1730 in Cunei)…"
By late summer of 1837, the 27-year-old Schumann was secretly engaged to his beloved Clara Wieck. The powerful emotions connected with this event were a stimulus to Schumann’s creative impulses, for he was a Romantic through & through. It was at this time that he composed the deeply personal Davidsbundlertanze -18 dances inspired by the imaginary league of David. This fellowship, invented by Schumann, consisted of Schumann’s own alter egos, plus a number of well-respected musicians & friends including Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy. The group was established as a way of fighting against the Philistines; it was Schumann’s response to contemporary musical trends which he saw as cheap, excessively virtuosic, & superficial.
…Writing of the chamber music of Friedrich Kiel, the famous scholar and critic Wilhelm Altmann notes that it was Kiel’s extreme modesty which kept him and his exceptional works from receiving the consideration they deserved. After mentioning Johannes Brahms and others, Altmann writes, “He produced a number of chamber works, which . . . need fear no comparison.”…