Sergey Vassilievich Rachmaninov

(1873-1943)

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Rachmaninov: Symphony No. 1

Rachmaninov: Symphony No. 1


Rachmaninov:

Symphony No. 1 in D minor, Op. 13

Symphonic Movement in D minor 'Youth Symphony'

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


Regarded as one of the most remarkable composers of the twentieth century, Serge Rachmaninoff wrote three romantically inclined symphonies, two of which are now standard orchestral repertoire. However, the premiere of Symphony No. 1 was such a disaster that Rachmaninoff refrained from composing anything more for the next three years. The conductor, Glazunov, is reputed to have been drunk, and Rachmaninoff was unable to attend the entire performance. He reacted by tearing up the score. Thankfully for posterity, the instrumental parts were preserved and rediscovered in 1945, permitting the work to be restored. It is a work full of youthful fervour, distinctive and sweeping themes, and nationalist sentiments, and is now widely regarded as a vivid example of his early talent. It is complemented here by the ‘Youth Symphony’, the first movement of a projected but never completed symphony in D minor, composed when Rachmaninoff was only seventeen, and the great symphonic poem The Isle of the Dead, inspired by Arnold Böcklin’s painting of the same name which Rachmaninoff had seen on display in Paris in 1907.

Composed in 1909, it is still a relatively early work, but contains some of the dark Russian spiritual qualities which Rachmaninoff was to develop further in his later compositions.

“Rachmaninov's First Symphony...here receives a landmark performance from the BBC Philharmonic and Gianandrea Noseda. When you listen to it alongside a mature masterpiece, particularly such a darkly atmospheric performance of The Isle of the Dead as this one, it is possible to appreciate how Rachmaninov could deem passages in the symphony to be "weak, childish, forced and bombastic", yet Noseda demonstrates the music's power, eloquent beauty and structural cohesion. Written when he was still in his late teens, the First Symphony already displays distinctive Rachmaninov fingerprints in harmonic terms and in the shaping of melodic ideas, and is in the grip of the fatalism that is rarely absent from his music. Noseda and the BBC Philharmonic recognise this general tenor, but the spectrum for expression of it is broad, from vigorous passion in the first movement and finale to the wistful rumination of the central Larghetto.” The Telegraph, 21st June 2008

“Nothing could be more liquid or gloomy than [Noseda's] reading of the superb symphonic poem The Isle of the Dead. His gifts for mood-juggling and structural flow ensure equally fine accounts of the student Youth Symphony and the composer’s official, stormy Symphony No 1. The full Chandos sound makes everything glow in the dark, especially the shadowy scherzo.” The Times, 6th June 2008 ****

“With the BBC Phil, he delves deep into the dark, gloomy recesses of the Russian soul, brilliantly evoking the composer’s brooding, headily chromatic tone poem The Isle of the Dead...Chandos’s brilliant recording [of Symphony 1] enhances a performance that takes us on an emotional rollercoaster ride: the passion and despair of the composer’s unrequited love for a married woman is drawn with febrile drama here.” Sunday Times, 1st June 2008 ****

“Rachmaninov's First Symphony of 1895... published only after the composer's death. Gianandrea Noseda and the BBC Philharmonic have the work's measure and their performance has a full-blooded intensity and fire. The Isle of the Dead, haunting and powerful in conception, is an undisputed masterpiece. Noseda captures the work's concentration and anguish with its inexorable sense of movement.” BBC Music Magazine, July 2008 *****

“Accomplished and easy to enjoy; but, in a crowded marketplace, not really a front-runner.” Gramophone Magazine, August 2008

BBC Music Magazine

Orchestral Choice - July 2008

Chandos Gianandrea Noseda Rachmaninov series - CHAN10475

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Rubinstein plays Rachmaninov

Rubinstein plays Rachmaninov


Rachmaninov:

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

Recorded 27th May, 1946 in Carnegie Hall, New York City

NBC Symphony Orchestra, Vladimir Golschmann

Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, Op. 43

Recorded 16th-17th September, 1947 in EMI Abbey Road Studio No. 1, London

Philharmonia Orchestra, Walter Susskind

Prelude Op. 3 No. 2 in C sharp minor

Recorded 11th December, 1950 in the RCA Studios, Hollywood


Although Rubinstein did not play many works by Rachmaninov, he made four recordings of the Piano Concerto No. 2. If, in this May 1946 recording, Rubinstein’s adherence to the text is not always completely accurate, his performance is full of exhilaration and panache with fast tempos and a climax judged to have any audience jumping to its feet. The 1947 recording of the Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini is remarkable, even today, for the high quality of the sound, described as “Stunning! The recording is almost too vivid”, by a critic in 1948. The only solo work of Rachmaninov that Rubinstein committed to disc was the famous Prelude in C sharp minor Op. 3 No. 2 which he recorded twice.

Naxos Historical Great Pianists - 8111289

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Emil Gilels Live in Moscow, Vol. 3

Emil Gilels Live in Moscow, Vol. 3


Bach, J S:

Prelude in B minor (after BWV855a, arr Siloti)

Beethoven:

Piano Sonata No. 12 in A flat major, Op. 26 'March Funebre'

Prokofiev:

Piano Sonata No. 3 in A minor, Op. 28

Prelude in C major, Op. 12 No. 7

Visions fugitives, Op. 22 (extracts)

8 Short Pieces

Rachmaninov:

Daisies, Op. 38 No. 3

Vocalise, Op. 34 No. 14

Prelude Op. 23 No. 10 in G flat major

Prelude Op. 32 No. 11 in B major

Prelude Op. 23 No. 5 in G minor

Prelude Op. 3 No. 2 in C sharp minor

Prelude Op. 23 No. 2 in B flat major

Scriabin:

Étude Op. 2 No. 1 in C sharp minor


Emil Gilels (piano)

DVD Video

Region: 0

VAI Emil Gilels Live in Moscow - DVDVAI4468

(DVD Video)

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Michal Drewnowski - Romantica

Michal Drewnowski - Romantica


Bach, J S:

Cantata BWV147 'Herz und Mund und Tat und Leben': Jesu, bleibet meine Freude

Loup:

Il est né le Divin Enfants (trad. arr. Loup)

La marche des Rois (trad. arr. Loup)

Les compagnons de la Marjolaine (trad. arr. Loup)

Entre le boeuf et l’âne gris (trad. arr. Loup)

Fait dodo, Cola mon petit frère (trad. arr. Loup)

Mon beau sapin (trad. arr. Loup)

Homage to Chopin, The Prayer

My first waltz, 4 Romantic Studies Nos. 6, 11, 21, and 20

Modern times, Ragtime, Boogie

Rachmaninov:

Vocalise, Op. 34 No. 14


Michal Drewnowski (piano)

Dux - DUX0566

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Orford Six Pianos

Orford Six Pianos

Works for Six Pianos


Gounod:

Faust - Waltz, Act II

arr. R. de Vilback

Holst, E:

Damonen Tanz

arr. O. Godin

Prokofiev:

Trois mouvements de Romeo et Juliette (arr. O.Godin)

arr. O. Godin

Rachmaninov:

Polka italienne

arr. O. Godin

Rossini:

Il barbiere di Siviglia Overture

arr. O. Godin

Saint-Saëns:

Danse macabre, Op. 40

arr. O. Godin

Wilberg:

Fantaisie sur des themes de Carmen de Bizet


Olivier Godin, Sandra Murray, Claire Ouellet, Mariane Patenaude, Francis Perron, Lorraine Prieur (pianos)

Atma - ACD22566

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Rachmaninoff - Orchestral Works

Rachmaninoff - Orchestral Works


Rachmaninov:

Symphonic Dances, Op. 45

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

Études-Tableaux (5), orch. Respighi


Grammy Nominatee 2003 - Best Engineered Classical Album

Reference Recordings - RR96

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Rachmaninov & Schubert - Piano Pieces

Rachmaninov & Schubert - Piano Pieces


Rachmaninov:

Etudes-Tableaux, Op. 39

Schubert:

Klavierstücke (3), D946


These two works are all too often neglected by performers but pianist Alain Lefèvre has incorporated them into his concert repertoire for over twenty years. The intensely lyrical and poetic works of Klavierstücke are a testament to Schubert’s great maturity; and the finely crafted little symphonic poems for piano of the Études-tableaux Op. 39 are surely some of Rachmaninov’s finest compositions.

Analekta - AN29278

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Rachmaninov - Piano Concerto No. 3

Rachmaninov - Piano Concerto No. 3


Rachmaninov:

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

Symphonic Dances, Op. 45


Pietro Massa (piano)

Orchestra Bruno Maderna, Daniele Giorgi

Genuin - GEN88112

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The Great Pianists Volume 7 - Vladimir Horowitz

The Great Pianists Volume 7 - Vladimir Horowitz

Masters of the Piano Roll series


Chopin:

Étude Op. 10 No. 6 in E flat minor 'Lacrimosa'

Étude Op. 25 No. 12 in C minor

Horovitz:

Waltz in F minor

Moment Exotique

Horowitz, V:

Variations on a Theme from Bizet's Carmen

Liszt:

Fantasy on Themes from Mozart's Marriage of Figaro and Don Giovanni, S697

arranged Busoni

Rachmaninov:

Prelude Op. 32 No. 10 in B minor

Prelude Op. 32 No. 8 in A minor

Prelude Op. 23 No. 5 in G minor

Saint-Saëns:

Danse macabre, Op. 40

arranged Liszt

Schubert:

Liebesbotschaft, D957 No.1

arranged Liszt

Tchaikovsky:

Dumka (Russian Rustic Scene), Op. 59


These recordings contain some of the finest playing from the Great Pianists of the Early 20th Century. Some of the rolls from which these recordings originate, are nearly 100 years old and come from a collection owned by Denis Condon who is one of the worlds most respected authorities on the piano roll and has some 18,000 in his collection.

“The tour de force in this programme of piano rolls comes in the fast sections of Tchaikovsky's Dumka and the Bizet Carmen Variations, both of which Horowitz dispatches at superhuman speed.” BBC Music Magazine, November 2008 ****

Dal Segno - The Great Pianists - DSPRCD023

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Rossini: La Boutique fantasque, etc.

Rachmaninov:

Étude-Tableau, Op. 39 No. 2 in A minor

La Foire, Op. 33, No. 7

Étude-Tableau, Op. 39 No. 7 in C minor

Étude-Tableau, Op. 39 No. 9 in D major

Étude-Tableau, Op. 39 No. 6 in A minor

Rossini:

La Boutique fantasque

(The Fantastic Toyshop)


Telarc - CD80396

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$9.75

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