Sergey Vassilievich Rachmaninov

(1873-1943)

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Rachmaninov: Piano Concertos Nos. 1 & 4 & Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini

Rachmaninov: Piano Concertos Nos. 1 & 4 & Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini


Rachmaninov:

Piano Concerto No. 1 in F sharp minor, Op. 1

Piano Concerto No. 4 in G minor, Op. 40

Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, Op. 43


Simon Simon Trpceski’s recording of Rachmaninov’s Piano Concertos Nos. 2 and 3 was one of the most acclaimed and best-selling classical releases of 2010. His frequent collaborations with Vasily Petrenko and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra are justly celebrated. Together they complete the Rachmaninov canon with this highly-anticipated follow up of Concertos Nos. 1 and 4, and the Paganini Rhapsody.

Rachmaninov Concertos 2 and 3 made the Top 10 of Billboard’s Classical Chart and won a Diapason d’or de l’année. Simon Trpceski will support the sequel with extensive touring and CD signings at which he regularly attracts hundreds of fans.

“Simon Trpceski, Vasily Petrenko and the RLPO bring understanding and instinct to their performances, and take to heart the different temperaments that each of the three works on this recording manifests...the judicious variety of touch and colour, and ability to reveal important details of the music, combine with an expressive maturity to make these performances utterly compelling.” The Telegraph, 16th June 2011 *****

“The virtuosi Macedonian Simon Trpčeski and St Petersburg-born Vasily Petrenko combine in taut, poetic performances with notably coruscating brass playing from an RLPO on impressive and expressive form.” The Observer, 26th June 2011

“Trpceski captures the music’s protean mood switches to perfection, his mercurial fingers dashing off the vivace flourishes of the outer movements and the most brilliant Paganini variations with insouciant bravura and brio...These performances are a meeting of dazzling musical minds, offering an untraditional approach that never sounds wilful, attention-seeking or eccentric.” Sunday Times, 3rd July 2011 *****

“Trpceski relishes Rachmaninov, thrilling his audience with virtuosic passages which easily demonstrate why these pieces in particular were important vehicles for Rachmaninov the exiled pianist. Petrenko maintains timing and tension, whilst never allowing lush lyricism to become stodgy or overwhelming...this is a musical combination which works superbly.” Classic FM Magazine, August 2011 *****

“[Nos 1 & 4] have never been such sure-fire crowd-pleasers, but Trpceski certainly plays them with fire and passion. No. 1 emerges as big-boned and compelling, while he plays up the leanly modernist aspects of No. 4...Trpceski is aided throughout by the unanimity of feeling produced by Vassily Petrenko's direction of the orchestra, conductor and pianist working hand in glove.” BBC Music Magazine, August 2011 ****

“Expectations are fully realised in performances of the highest order...Trpceski was put on this earth to play this music and Petrenko to conduct it...This is a riveting disc, another major landmark for Trpceski and one on which Rachmaninov finds interpreters thoroughly attuned to his emotional world.” Gramophone Magazine, September 2011

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - September 2011

Avie - AV2191

(CD)

$18.75

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Phénoménal Vengerov!

Phénoménal Vengerov!


includes:

Beethoven:

Violin Concerto in D major, Op. 61

Romances Nos. 1 & 2 for violin and orchestra

Kreisler:

Liebesfreud

Liebesleid

Lalo:

Symphonie espagnole, Op. 21

Rachmaninov:

Vocalise, Op. 34 No. 14

Ravel:

Tzigane

Saint-Saëns:

Violin Concerto No. 3 in B minor, Op. 61

Wieniawski:

Scherzo-Tarantelle in G minor, Op. 16


This 3CD set offers an incredible value for the price of one mid album, with a great panorama of his art. On CD1, the Beethoven Concerto and two Romances, and Kreisler’s favorite encore ‘Liebesleid’ and ‘Liebesfreud’. The second CD contains the French most famous violin concertos: Lalo’s Symphonie espagnole, a piece of bravura with the 3rd violin concerto by Camille Saint-Saëns, and Ravel’s great ‘Tzigane’. Last but not least the 3rd CD celebrates best loved and virtuoso violin works: Meditation de Thaïs, Ave Maria, Hungarian Dances, Vocalise…

EMI - 0264772

(CD - 3 discs)

$14.50

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Raluca Stirbat plays Enescu, Silvestri, Constantinescu, Rachmaninov & Kreisler

Raluca Stirbat plays Enescu, Silvestri, Constantinescu, Rachmaninov & Kreisler


Constantinescu:

Toccata-Joc dobrogean

Enescu:

Suite for Piano No. 2 in D major, Op. 10

Piano Sonata No. 1 in F sharp minor, Op. 24/1

Rachmaninov:

Liebesleid (after Kreisler)

Liebesfreud (after Kreisler)

Silvestri, C:

Konzertstück, Op. 25 No. 3

Baccanale


Raluca Stirbat (piano)

Gramola - GRAM98905

(CD)

$20.00

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Martha Argerich Edition: Solo & Duo Piano

Martha Argerich Edition: Solo & Duo Piano


Brahms:

Sonata for 2 pianos in F minor, Op. 34b

Variations on a theme by Haydn for two pianos, Op. 56b 'St Anthony Variations'

Chopin:

Piano Sonata No. 3 in B minor, Op. 58

Mazurkas Op. 59 Nos. 1-3

Nocturne No. 4 in F major, Op. 15 No. 1

Scherzo No. 3 in C sharp minor, Op. 39

Polonaise No. 6 in A flat major, Op. 53 'Héroïque'

Liszt:

Orgel-Fantasie und Fuge in g-moll von J. S. Bach, S463i

Réminiscences de Don Juan (W.A. Mozart) for two pianos, S. 656

Concerto pathétique in E minor for two pianos, S258

Mendelssohn:

A Midsummer Night's Dream Overture, Op. 21

Messiaen:

Visions de l'Amen for 2 pianos

Mozart:

Andante and Variations in G for Piano Duet, K501

Piano Sonata No. 16 in C major, K545 'Facile'

Piazzólla:

Tres Minutos con la Realidad

Oblivion

Libertango

Prokofiev:

Symphony No. 1 in D major, Op. 25 'Classical'

for two pianos

Rachmaninov:

Suite No. 1 (Fantaisie-tableaux), Op. 5

Suite No. 2 for Two Pianos, Op. 17

Six Pieces, Op. 11

Ravel:

Ma Mère l'Oye

Schumann:

Kinderszenen, Op. 15

Andante and Variation for two pianos Op. 46

Shostakovich:

Concertino for two pianos, Op. 94

Tchaikovsky:

The Nutcracker Suite, Op. 71a

for two pianos


Martha Argerich was born on 5th June 1941 in Buenos Aires. Her interest in the piano showed itself when she was three. Vincenzo Scaramuzza, her teacher, impressed on her the importance of feeling and the singing lyrical line – a facet of her playing which remains immediately recognisable. At the age of eight she made her debut concert playing Beethoven’s first concerto and the following year she gave Mozart’s Concerto No. 20 in D minor, K. 466 and Bach’s French Suite in G, BWV 816.

In 1955 her family moved to Europe so that Martha could study with Friedrich Gulda in Austria; in this she was supported by the Argentine government who gave her parents diplomatic posts in their Embassy in Vienna. She won both the Geneva Music and Ferruccio Busoni International Competitions in 1957, but it was her winning the seventh Chopin Piano competition in Warsaw that confirmed her as a major talent at the age of 24.

Her formidable technique has often been compared to that of Horowitz. She is reputed to have learnt Ravel’s Gaspard de la nuit in three days having been told it was extremely difficult. Her solo career lasted for a quarter of a century during which her talent for interpreting the romantic classics, notably Chopin and Liszt, were matched by her brilliance in the 20th century masters Ravel, Rachmaninov, Prokofiev and Messiaen. Her decision to limit her performances to chamber music and concerto was taken, as she admitted in interviews, to her feeling of loneliness on stage alone. This has been her career path for the last 30 years and she retains the aura of one of the most brilliant of all pianists of modern generations.

She has been particularly generous in supporting the next generation of artists.

She appears regularly as a jury member at important competitions and her friends and protégées captivate audiences with exquisite performances of chamber music at her festival at Lugano. Now at the age of 70 we can salute her as the phenomenon she undoubtedly is and wish her continued success in all aspects of her life.

“It's breathtaking Chopin playing” BBC Music Magazine, December 2011

EMI Martha Argerich Edition - 0940442

(CD - 6 discs)

$32.50

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From Russia with Music

From Russia with Music


Rachmaninov:

Symphonic Dances, Op. 45

Three Russian Songs, Op. 41

Chor der V.S. Popov Academy of Choral Arts

Rimsky Korsakov:

The Tale of Tsar Saltan: March

Tchaikovsky:

Romeo & Juliet - Fantasy Overture


RCA - 88697859402

(CD)

$21.00

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Shura Cherkassky

Shura Cherkassky


Chabrier:

Bourrée Fantasque

Prokofiev:

Piano Sonata No. 7 in B flat major, Op. 83

Saal 2, Funkhaus, Cologne, 21 January 1951

Rachmaninov:

Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, Op. 43

Saal 1, Funkhaus, Cologne, 17 April 1970

Kolner Rundfunk-Sinfonie-Orchester, Zdenek Macal

Polka de V.R.

Rameau:

Tambourin

(arr. Godowsky)

Stravinsky:

Three Movements from Petrushka

Saal 2, Funkhaus, Cologne, 21 January 1951


Shura Cherkassky (1909–1995) was one of the greatest piano virtuosos of his time having studied under the legendary Josef Hofmann.

This WDR studio broadcast sourced from the original master tapes has Cherkassky playing Rachmaninov’s Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini from 1970 in superb stereo. He recorded the Rhapsody only once in 1953 for EMI in mono but it has never been issued on CD so this taping is exceptionally important and adds a major work to Cherkassky’s large discography.

Prokofiev’s wartime Piano Sonata No.7 was never recorded commercially by Cherkassky so this is another addition to his discography sourced from WDR’s original master tapes. It was recorded in 1951 when Cherkassky was fast becoming a star in Germany.

The three scenes from Stravinsky’s Petruschka was a favourite virtuoso work for Cherkassky and this 1951 recording shows him at his most brilliant, sourced from WDR’s original master tapes. Three encores have been added from 1951 and 1953 (not sourced from WDR) which again showcase Cherkassky’s incredible technique during the early period of his career in Germany. Note that Cherkassky never recorded Chabrier’s Bourrée Fantasque commercially.

“the pianist’s irrepressible spirit shines through in Prokofiev’s Seventh Sonata and the Stravinsky pieces.” The Telegraph, 12th May 2011 ***

Historical Recordings - up to 25% off

ica classics Legacy - ICAC5020

(CD)

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Van Cliburn plays Great Piano Concertos

Van Cliburn plays Great Piano Concertos


Beethoven:

Piano Concerto No. 3 in C minor, Op. 37

Philadelphia Orchestra, Eugene Ormandy

Piano Concerto No. 5 in E flat major, Op. 73 'Emperor'

Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Fritz Reiner

Piano Concerto No. 4 in G major, Op. 58

Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Fritz Reiner

Brahms:

Piano Concerto No. 1 in D minor, Op. 15

Boston Symphony Orchestra, Erich Leinsdorf

Piano Concerto No. 2 in B flat major, Op. 83

Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Fritz Reiner

Chopin:

Piano Concerto No. 1 in E minor, Op. 11

Philadelphia Orchestra, Eugene Ormandy

Grieg:

Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 16

Philadelphia Orchestra, Eugene Ormandy

Liszt:

Piano Concerto No. 1 in E flat major, S124

Philadelphia Orchestra, Eugene Ormandy

MacDowell:

Piano Concerto No. 2 in D minor Op. 23

Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Walter Hendl

Rachmaninov:

Piano Concerto No. 2 in C minor, Op. 18

Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Fritz Reiner

Piano Concerto No. 3 in D minor, Op. 30

Symphony of the Air, Kyrill Kondrashin

Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, Op. 43

Philadelphia Orchestra, Eugene Ormandy

Schumann:

Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 54

Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Fritz Reiner

Tchaikovsky:

Piano Concerto No. 1 in B flat minor, Op. 23

RCA Symphony Orchestra, Kyrill Kondrashin


Van Cliburn (piano)

RCA Classical Masters - 88697742852

(CD - 7 discs)

$35.25

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Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No. 2 & Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini

Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No. 2 & Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini


Rachmaninov:

Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, Op. 43

Piano Concerto No. 2 in C minor, Op. 18


Wang, Gramophone’s “Young Artist of the Year” in 2009 joins the legendary maestro, Claudio Abbado on her first orchestral album and the Mahler Chamber Orchestra.

To the challenging Rachmaninov Piano Concerto no. 2, she adds the daunting Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini.

“Whereas many pianists try to dominate this set of variations, she worked with it. This approach simply gave more punch to the places in which the piano should jump out of the texture” (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette).

“She tackles the popular "Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No 2" with an ease that betrays her deep familiarity with the material; but it's the confident way she deals with the challenging "Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini"...that most impresses here...It's all hand-led with industrious grace by Wang.” The Independent, 11th March 2011

“lots of filigree play and brilliantly clear articulation” The Times, 2nd April 2011 ***

“The partnership of Yuja Wang and Claudio Abbado produces thoughtful and often imaginative Rachmaninov on this new disc. These performances may be as flamboyant or as theatrical as some, but there are impressive moments, and there's a fluency and lack of the mannerism inthe playing that is certainly attractive.” International Record Review, April 2011

“She makes us hear this hoariest of Romantic war-horses afresh, as if with cleaned ears: the work emerges as almost classical, Mozartian even, in its poise and architecture. There isn't an iota of indulgence of gratuitious emotion, yet neither is there any lack of force or genuine passion wherever required.” BBC Music Magazine, May 2011 *****

“This petite 24-year-old turns out to be a powerhouse! Undaunted by the challenges of this repertoire, her articulate and precise style brings a freshness and wit to these pieces without compromising the emotional breadth of Rachmaninov's music. Her intelligent crafting of the variations turns the Rhapsody into a bonus concerto, but it's her superb skill and artistry which shines through.” Classic FM Magazine, June 2011 ****

GGramophone Awards 2011

Shortlisted - Concerto

DG - 4779308

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$17.50

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Rachmaninov: Symphonies 1 -3 & Orchestral Works

Rachmaninov: Symphonies 1 -3 & Orchestral Works


Rachmaninov:

The Isle of the Dead - Symphonic Poem, Op. 29

Symphonies Nos. 1-3 (complete)

The Rock - Fantasy for Orchestra, Op. 7

Symphonic Dances, Op. 45

The Bells, Op. 35

Marina Mescheriakova (soprano), Sergei Larin (tenor) & Vladimir Chernov (baritone)

with The Moscow State Chamber Choir

Taneyev:

Cantata: Ioann Damaskin (John of Damascus), Op. 1

with The Moscow State Chamber Choir


“In the First Symphony Mikhail Pletnev produces a range of sonority and clarity of articulation that we recognize from his keyboard playing, and there is a poetic vision alongside a splendid command of architecture. The symphony is quite outstanding in his hands, and so is The Isle of the Dead...Again, The Bells comes in a performance that shows the music in an entirely new light. Pletnev has his finger on the composer's pulse and always has special insights to bring to his music.” Penguin Guide, 2011 edition

DG Collectors Edition - 4779505

(CD - 4 discs)

$31.75

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Tchaikovsky & Rachmaninov: Piano Concertos

Tchaikovsky & Rachmaninov: Piano Concertos


Rachmaninov:

Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, Op. 43

Piano Concertos Nos. 1-4 (complete)

Tchaikovsky:

Piano Concerto No. 1 in B flat minor, Op. 23


Mikhail Rudy (piano)

St. Petersberg Philharmonic Orchestra, Mariss Jansons

Definitive series of great classical music on EMI Classics with legendary recordings re-mastered at the famous Abbey Road Studios.

EMI Masters - 9187262

(CD - 3 discs)

$17.50

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