Sergey Vassilievich Rachmaninov

(1873-1943)

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Rachmaninov: Piano Concertos Nos. 3 & 4

Rachmaninov: Piano Concertos Nos. 3 & 4


Rachmaninov:

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

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


Internationally acclaimed pianist Leif Ove Andsnes teams up once again with conductor Antonio Pappano on his new recording of Rachmaninov: Piano Concertos Nos. 3 & 4. They are joined by the London Symphony Orchestra. Andsnes and Pappano first recorded collaboration was the 2004 EMI Classics release of Rachmaninov: Piano Concertos Nos. 1 & 2, with the Berliner Philharmoniker, which received glorious, universal acclaim.

The London Symphony Orchestra, with Vladimir Horowitz, was the first to record Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No. 3. It was released 70 years ago in 1930.

“If judicious sensuality is indeed on vital quality that manifests itself in [Andsnes's] new recording with the LSO and Pappano, another is the impressive physicality of the performance...He, Pappano and the orchestra breathe together...If Andsnes's playing is arresting for the quantity of relevant detail that he conveys, so too is the orchestra's.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2010

“...together with his lustrous tone and physical power he brings to the Third Concerto a compelling poetic sensibility. He and Pappano are entirely as one in finding the music’s pulse, its fluxes of pace and its blend of grandeur, mellowness and bravura...This is a disc of terrific stature.” The Telegraph, 5th October 2010 *****

“emotionally subtle music-making, light and beckoning one minute, steely with tension the next...the orchestra’s lyrical flow is the first thing you notice as the Third Concerto begins. Pappano might not be conducting opera here, but he can’t help bringing out the music’s song or revealing its heart.” The Times, 15th October 2010 ****

“There's no disputing the high standard of Leif Ove Andsnes's pianism in both these concertos, among the most technically demanding in the repertoire – nor the equal brilliance with which Antonio Pappano and the London Symphony Orchestra partner his performances.” The Guardian, 21st October 2010 ****

“[Andsnes] manages to make the first movement sound more sinister and wayward than most of his rivals, yet he's in his element in etching the filigree and fioriture of the highly-decorated solo part in the slow movement” BBC Music Magazine, December 2010 ****

“The passion burns from within in this incendiary account...The amplitude of his melodies, the rich scoring and the insistent Russian melancholy are most potent when kept under control. The poetic, muscular Andsnes, sensitively and glitteringly accompanied by Pappano and the LSO, does just that.” The Observer, 31st October 2010

“You don't really get indulgences and histrionics from Andsnes - he leaves much of that to conductor Antonio Pappano...What Pappano and Andsnes do so well together is pace both pieces and tell the musical stories...In few other recordings does the opening to the Fourth's Allegro sound so hypnotically tight and magical” Classic FM Magazine, December 2010 *****

“Technical challenges are shaken off like rainwater, subtler sections are given the requisite grace and poise, and everything else in between is a joyous blur.” Daniel Ross, bbc.co.uk, 2nd November 2010

“just as rippling and brilliant as his 1995 live recording with the Oslo Philharmonic but even more rhapsodic and searching.” New York Times, 26th November 2010

“From the start [of the Fourth Concerto], they pace things superbly: the opening piano theme...has a sweeping nobility that is hugely impressive, and the detail Pappano finds in the orchestral writing is no less remarkable. Best of all is the clear-sighted sense of direction that soloist and conductor project throughout this work - making a formidable case for it.” International Record Review, December 2010

GGramophone Awards 2011

Shortlisted - Concerto

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - Awards Issue 2010

EMI - 6405162

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Rachmaninoff: Complete Piano Works

Rachmaninoff: Complete Piano Works


Rachmaninov:

Études-Tableaux, Op. 33

Etudes-Tableaux, Op. 39

Preludes Op. 23 Nos. 1-10 (complete)

Three Nocturnes

Song without words

Variations on a theme of Corelli, Op. 42

Piano Sonata No. 1 in D minor, Op. 28

Preludes Op. 32 Nos. 1-13 (complete)

Piano Sonata No. 2 in B flat minor, Op. 36

Morceaux de Fantaisie, Op. 3

Variations on a Theme of Chopin, Op. 22

Moments Musicaux, Op. 16

Morceaux de Salon, Op. 10

Polka de V.R.

plus:

CD6 51’10

Piano Works: Transcriptions

CD7 56’53

From Russia to America: Miscellany 1886–1918

CD8 63’37

Works for piano duet I

CD9 62’32

Works for piano duet II


Nils Franke, David Gardiner, Alexander Ghindin, Robert Groslot, Nikolai Lugansky, Garrick Ohlsson, Michael Ponti, Santiago Rodriguez, Ingryd Thorson & Julian Thurber (piano)

Sergei Rachmaninoff’s name will always be associated with the piano. As one of the greatest composer pianists of the 20th century, he stands alongside his younger contemporaries Prokoviev and Mednter as the last in a long line of great composer pianists that reaches back to Mozart and Beethoven 100 years before his first works for piano. These 9CDs chart his progress as a composer for his instrument, starting with the earliest works from the late 1880s. These show the influences of Tchaikovsky, Schumann and Chopin, with Liszt sometimes detectable in the more thunderous passages. It was the op. 3 Prelude in C sharp minor that finally gave voice to his unique musical personality, full of brooding passion. This work was praised by Tchaikovsky, and Rachmaninov’s teacher Arensky. The early masterpiece, the Variations on a Theme by Chopin date from 1903, and was quickly followed by the 1st Sonata, and the 13 preludes op32. These all date from the period that saw the composition of the 2nd Symphony, and The Isle of the Dead. The ferociously demanding 2nd Sonata was a work that was much revised by the composer (today many pianists play a hybrid of the original and the revised edition), who went to his death still unhappy with the work, even though it was a success at its premiere.

His last works for solo piano date from the American years, and the Variations on a Theme by Corelli (1932) were met with a cool reception at the premier in Montreal in 1932. Subsequent performances were punctuated with coughing that distressed Rachmaninov so much he wrote to his friend and fellow composer Medtner ’whenever the coughing increased, I left out the next variation…in one concert the coughing was so bad I managed only 10 variations (out of 20), the record number was in New York, where I managed 18. However, I hope you’ll play through all of them – and won’t ‘cough’. The work is a masterpiece, however in 1930s his music was drifting out of fashion – the 3rd Symphony, 4th Piano Concerto and the Symphonic Dances all had poor receptions, and the low point came with the disgraceful Grove 5 edtion entry on the composer. Happily today his reputation is restored as one of the greatest pianist composers of all time.

Brilliant Classics Piano Library - 9192

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Nils Crona: Ostklingande sanger for bas

Nils Crona: Ostklingande sanger for bas


Beethoven:

Lieder von Gellert (6), Op. 48

Mussorgsky:

Dostig Ya Vyshey Vlasti (from Boris Godunov)

Rachmaninov:

Morning, Op. 4 No. 2

In my soul, Op.14 No.10

By a fresh grave, Op. 21 No. 2

All was taken from me, Op. 26 No. 2

Were you hiccoughing, Natasha?

Oh, my field, Op. 4 No. 5

Shostakovich:

Six Romances on Verses by Raleigh, Burns and Shakespeare, Op. 62/140

Tchaikovsky:

Lyubvi fse vozrastï pokornï 'Gremin's aria' (from Eugene Onegin)

trad.:

Fader var

Huddinge Motet Choir

Entonigt klingar den lilla klockan

Huddinge Motet Choir

Symeons lovsang

Huddinge Motet Choir


Nils Crona (bass), Nonna Sjilo (piano)

Hans- Ove Olsson

Nosag - NOSAGCD010

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Moments musicaux

Moments musicaux


Rachmaninov:

Moments Musicaux, Op. 16

Schubert:

Moments Musicaux (6), D780, Op. 94


Intim Musik - IMCD089

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Beethoven: Piano Sonata No. 31, Ravel: Miroirs & Rachmaninov: Variations on a Theme of Corelli

Beethoven: Piano Sonata No. 31, Ravel: Miroirs & Rachmaninov: Variations on a Theme of Corelli


Beethoven:

Piano Sonata No. 31 in A flat major, Op. 110

Rachmaninov:

Variations on a theme of Corelli, Op. 42

Ravel:

Miroirs, 5 pieces for piano


Megumi Fujita (piano)

Intim Musik - IMCD114

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Rachmaninov: Preludes (complete)

Rachmaninov: Preludes (complete)


Rachmaninov:

Prelude Op. 3 No. 2 in C sharp minor

Preludes Op. 23 Nos. 1-10 (complete)

Preludes Op. 32 Nos. 1-13 (complete)


Megumi Fujita (piano)

Intim Musik - IMCD097

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Aleko and Kaschey the Immortal

Aleko and Kaschey the Immortal


Rachmaninov:

Aleko

Recorded in 1986

Konstantin Pluzhnikov (Kaschei), Natalya Lapina (Kashcheyevna - actress), E. Rubin (Kashcheyevna - singer), Alla Oding (Princess), Sofia Yalysheva (Princess), Valery Lebedev (Prince Ivan Korolevich), Yuri Stoyanov (The Storm Knight - actor), Alexander Morozov (The Storm Knight - singer)

Moscow State Symphony Orchestra, Gosteleradio Chorus, Dimitri Kitayenko

Rimsky Korsakov:

Kashchey the Immortal

Recorded in 1987

Nelli Volshaninova (Zemfira - actress), Svetlana Volkova (Zemfira - singer), Vladimir Golovin (Old Gypsy - actor), Vladimir Matorin (Old Gypsy - singer), Maria Papazian (Old Gypsy Woman - actress), Raisa Kotova (Old Gypsy Woman - singer), Sandor Semenov (Young Gypsy - actress), Mikhail Muntyan (Young Gypsy - singer)

Dmitri Shostakovich Symphony Orchestra of Leningrad, A Trifonov


A “double bill” of two Russian operatic masterpieces. Legendary bass Evgeny Nesterenko stars in the title role of Aleko (1892), an early work of Sergei Rachmaninoff (1873-1943), written the composer was still a student at the Moscow Conservatory. Strongly influenced by the Italian verismo school (the plot is a close relation to that of Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci), the score is full of colorful evocations of Gypsy life and passionate emotional outpourings. The cast of this expansive 1986 film version, directed by Victor Okuntsov, includes members of Gypsy folk ensembles, adding to the production’s striking authenticity. The Moscow State Symphony Orchestra and Gosteleradio Chorus are under the direction of Dimitri Kitayenko.

By contrast, Kashchey the Immortal (sometimes called Kashchey the Deathless) is very much a mature work of Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov (1844-1908); it was the composer’s twelfth opera, and premiered in 1902. Moreover, its mythic setting and magical storyline (drawn from the same Russian folk tale that inspired Stravinsky’s ballet The Firebird) are worlds away from Aleko’s gritty realism. This 1987 Russian film version stars the great singing actor Konstantin Pluzhnikov in the title role (Pluzhnikov is also the Kaschey in the acclaimed CD recording conducted by Valery Gergiev). Directed by Oleg Yeryshev, the film goes far beyond what could be achieved in a stage production, adding clarity, depth, and spectacle to this poignant fairy tale.

124 minutes, Color, 4:3, Mono, All regions

Subtitles in English and Russian

DVD Video

Region: 0

VAI - DVDVAI4527

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Schumann & Rachmaninov: Piano Works

Schumann & Rachmaninov: Piano Works


Rachmaninov:

Etudes-Tableaux, Op. 39

Schumann:

Fantasie in C major, Op. 17


Alexander Drozdov (piano)

“cogent, poetic and virtuosic readings...Drozdov has clearly immersed himself in these immortal pieces over a long period, and he reaches down into their cryptic recesses with an impressive display of emotional balance and physical strength.” MusicWeb International, August 2012

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Rachmaninov: Symphony No. 3 & Vocalise

Rachmaninov: Symphony No. 3 & Vocalise


Rachmaninov:

Symphony No. 3 in A minor, Op. 44

Vocalise, Op. 34 No. 14 - arrangement for orchestra


Leopold Stokowski was a close friend and champion to many composers, especially the Russians who where exiled in the USA after the revolution. Chief among them were Stravinsky and Rachmaninov. The US premiere of The Rite of Spring was conducted by Stokowski, and in 1920 the US premiere of Rachmaninov’s choral symphony ‘The Bells’ was given by Stokowski, who together with the composer had premiered the revised version of the first Piano Concerto.

It was natural that when Rachmaninov completed his Third Symphony in 1935, Stokowski would give the premiere, which took place on 6 November 1936. Although the work is the composer’s orchestral masterpiece, it was met with a lukewarm reception, and Stokowski never conducted it again in public. Rachmaninov’s music seemed in danger of falling out of favour, and the appalling Grove 5th edition entry on the composer may well have coloured Stokowski’s decision to reduce the number of the composer’s works he programmed.

However, at the age of 93 Stokowski returned to the studio, and to his friend’s Third Symphony with an orchestra of hand-picked London musicians. The recording is a remarkable achievement. Stokowski proved that he had new things to say about this masterpiece, and the performance bristles with excitement and tension.

‘I simply make music, and people have always been foolish enough to pay me for it. I never told them that I would have done it all for nothing.’ Leopold Stokowski, CBS TV 1976

‘In the case of Rachmaninov’s Third Symphony, there is the purely historical advantage of having a generally well-engineered stereo recording by the man who had conducted the world premiere back in 1936’ Gramophone review, July 1998

Newton Classics - 8802024

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The Virtuoso Clarinet, Vol. 1

The Virtuoso Clarinet, Vol. 1


Gershwin:

Preludes (3)

Giampieri:

Il Carnevale di Venezia’

Lovreglio, D:

Fantasia da Concerto su motivi de 'La Traviata' by Verdi, Op. 45

Messager:

Solo de concours

Milhaud:

Scaramouche, suite for clarinet & piano (or orchestra), Op. 165d

Milton, S:

Carmen Fantasy

Rachmaninov:

Vocalise, Op. 34 No. 14

Weber:

Grand Duo Concertant for clarinet and piano, Op. 48


Michael Collins (clarinet) & Piers Lane (piano)

Michael Collins is one of our most versatile clarinettists, possessing a dazzling virtuosity and sensitive musicianship that have made him the favourite of conductors, composers, and audiences throughout the world. Now an exclusive Chandos artist, Collins is embarking on a series of recordings designed to display the extraordinarily wide range of music written for his instrument. The present programme comprises a varied repertoire, concentrating generally (though not exclusively) on its more extrovert virtuoso aspects and offering some breathtaking show-stoppers. Well-known works such as Rachmaninoff’s haunting Vocalise contrast with the sunny brilliance of Giampieri’s Il carnevale di Venezia, and the playful, inventive French items by Milhaud and Messager provide a further contrast in mood and colour.

Weber’s bubbly Grand Duo concertant is also among the many highlights on this disc. Unlike other works of his, in which the main purpose of the accompanying instruments is to support the virtuoso solo part, the Grand Duo presents an equal juxtaposition of two virtuoso solo parts, one being the clarinet, the other the piano. The piece is a Duo in the true sense of the word. Another key piece is Milhaud’s famous Scaramouche. This was initially composed as a work for two pianos, but due to its immediate and immense popularity, the composer was soon called on to make several arrangements of it, starting with the one for clarinet and piano which we hear on this CD. The first movement, Vif, has a sense of breezy excitement that is intensified by the bravura cartwheels of the clarinet part. The gentle Modéré that follows has a lovely dreamy feel to it, which is in stark contrast to the vigorous rhythmic energy of the exuberant finale, Brazileira.

Moving to the present day, the disc also presents Simon Milton’s Carmen Fantasy which was premiered at the Harrogate Festival in 2009. Milton stays closely to Bizet’s harmony and keeps the tunes highly recognisable despite all the elaborations and mini-cadenzas with which he intersperses them. It is a thoroughly engaging work, well worth a separate mention.

Future discs will include one dedicated to showing the instrument’s lyrical qualities, and several devoted to clarinet concertos, including Weber’s and a group of British works.

“[Collins] give the impression of improvising the spectacular virtuoso writing with a freedom of expression that conveys pure joy...In all this Piers Lane also plays a virtuoso part, and the recording is outstandingly vivid...What makes the disc more consistently enjoyable than many such offerings is the pure joy in virtuosity revealed in every item.” Gramophone Magazine, December 2010

“Virtuosity is at the heart of this appealing, exhilarating disc...Collins first recorded the Weber, Messager and Lovreglio back in 1992...This time round, he lives up to the standards he set then, both in technical ease and in subtlety of phrasing. Piers Lane makes a stalwart contribution.” BBC Music Magazine, January 2011 ****

“ Despite the phenomenal virtuosity, and for all the hard work that must have gone into achieving it, what first strikes you about Michael Collins’s playing is its supreme naturalness — as if he had been born holding a clarinet. The next thing is the artistry that infuses it: the fastest, most blatantly exhibitionistic runs and arpeggios and trills...always make music.” Sunday Times, 13th February 2011 ****

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