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George Enescu (1881-1955)

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Enescu: Complete Works for Piano Solo

Enescu: Complete Works for Piano Solo


Enescu:

Suite for Piano No. 1 in G minor, Op. 3

Prélude et Scherzo in F sharp Minor

Barcarolle in B flat major

La Fileuse in D major

Impromptu in A flat major

Regrets in G flat major

Impromptu in C major

Prelude and Fugue

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

Nocturne

Suite for Piano No. 3, Op. 18 “Pieces Impromptues”

Sonatensatz in F sharp minor

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

Piano Sonata No. 3 in D major, Op. 24/3


Raluca Stirbat (piano)

George Enescu is mainly known as a legendary violinist; yet he was not less known as an exceptionally gifted pianist who has been admired and worshiped by his colleagues for his musicality. His expressive and elaborate compositions for piano are up to date underrepresented in the world of CD records.

This gap has been closed now: The Rumanian pianist Raluca Stirbat, who is one of the most outstanding representatives of her age in the Rumanian piano generation has recorded Enesu’s complete works for piano on three CDs. And how!

She shows brilliant technique together with her relating selection of rich acoustic colours as Stirbat’s complete portrait of the versatile pianist George Enescu becomes apparent. This picture is being completed by numerous premiere and world premiere recordings on CD.

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Hänssler - HAEN98060

(CD - 3 discs)

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Enescu: Complete Works for Violin and Piano

Enescu: Complete Works for Violin and Piano


Enescu:

Impressions d'enfance for violin and piano, Op. 28

Violin Sonata 'Torso'

Violin Sonata No. 2 in F minor, Op. 6

Violin Sonata No. 3 in A minor, Op. 25 'dans le caractère populaire roumain'

Ballade, Op. 4a

Impromptu Concertant in G flat major for violin & piano

Andante malinconico for violin & piano

Tarantelle

Hora Unirei

Violin Sonata No. 1 in D major, Op. 2


Remus Azoitei (violin) & Eduard Stan (piano)

George Enescu was one of the most brilliant musical figures of the 20th Century, and by far the most important artist to emerge from Romania. He was an extraordinary composer, inspiring conductor, and a highly esteemed violinist. The cellist Pablo Casals characterised Enescu as "the greatest musical phenomenon since Mozart“ and Yehudi Menuhin remained a lifelong devotee, saying: “If you ask me who had the most influence and range as a musician, then I say Enescu!”

Of all of Enescu's works for violin and piano, the 3rd Sonata Op. 25 "dans le caractère roumain populaire" ("in Romanian folk character" ) composed in 1926 is the most famous and stands roughly in the center of his work for these instruments. In addition to the two other sonatas, a dramatic sonata „torso“ in A Minor, the "Impressions d' enfance" and some smaller works have survived. The Ballad, composed in Paris in 1895 by the precocious fourteen year old Enescu begins his work for violin and piano, ending with the nostalgic Andante malinconico of 1951.

Two Romanian musicians, violinist Remus Azoitei and pianist Eduard Stan bring this multifaceted music to life with their gorgeous playing- and drawing inspiration - adding a personal touch - with their own intuitive understanding of Romanian culture, just as the master composed them.

“These wonderful two discs underline Enescu's pedigree as a composer, with Azoitei and Stan showing innate understanding not just of the large-scale works, but also the rarely-heard miniatures.” BBC Music Magazine, September 2014 ****

“The studio recording has been well-judged and doesn’t sound cold or distant. The performances...are really first-class, and are alive to all the twists and turns in the music, keenly aware of the folkloric impulse throughout and touchingly tender when required. I want to hear more from this duo.” MusicWeb International, 7th November 2014

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Hänssler - HAEN98035

(CD - 2 discs)

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Enescu: Complete Works For Violin And Piano (Vol. 1)

Enescu: Complete Works For Violin And Piano (Vol. 1)


Enescu:

Impressions d'enfance for violin and piano, Op. 28

Violin Sonata 'Torso'

Violin Sonata No. 2 in F minor, Op. 6


Remus Azoitei (violin), Eduard Stan (piano)

“Like Béla Bartók, Romanian composer-violinist- pianist George Enescu wrote violin music from a fairly early age, even earlier in fact: both the Ballade and Tarantella that feature on the second disc of this admirable survey are the products of a prodigiously gifted 14-year-old.
Both are world premiere recordings, forming part of a sequence of unusual short pieces that includes a racy Hora Unirei from 1917 (like an offbeat waltz), a playful Impromptu concertant (1903) and a brief but harmonically pungent Andante malinconico that Enescu wrote for a sight-reading competition just four years before he died. All five miniatures showcase the refined but vibrant performing style of Remus Azoitei, a distinctive player whose sound world echoes Enescu's own.
Azoitei's pianist Eduard Stan is memorably supple in terms of both rhythm and touch, vital attributes in the last and greatest of the violin works, the Third Sonata, with its tricky transitions, complex but spirited dance sequences and fiery climaxes, especially in the finale. Azoitei and Stan combine temperament, mastery of idiom and executive elegance in a very special way. They shape the music beautifully, so that what in some hands sounds like mere extended improvisation (a desirable attribute admittedly) also parades discernable form.
The five larger works all come off exceptionally well. Regarding the folky and atmospheric Impressions d'enfance Azoitei gives the impression of controlled rhapsodising, and so does his pianist. The earliest larger-scale work here is the First Sonata, another teenage essay, confident and fitfully memorable though predictably derivative, with Schumann coming most often to mind. Carl Flesch described the Second Sonata (1899) as 'one of the most important works of all sonata literature, whose neglect is totally unjustifiable'.
If the repertoire appeals, no need to look any further: this is a first-rate collection, although Lupu is also worth searching out, maybe as a supplementary purchase, especially for that orchestral Caprice roumain.”
Gramophone Classical Music Guide, 2010

“For an (almost) complete survey, Azoitei and Stan are unmatched for their sensitivity and insight...Readers should not hesitate in adding this masterly music to their collection.” International Record Review, March 2011

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Hänssler - HAEN98239

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Enescu: Romanian Music for Cello

Enescu: Romanian Music for Cello


Enescu:

Sonata Movement in F minor - Allegro

Sonata in F minor for cello and piano, Op. 26, No. 1

Sonata in C major for cello and piano, Op. 26, No. 2

Nocturne

Saltarello - Vivace


Valentin Rautiu (cello) & Per Rundberg (piano)

This exceptional duo returns to bring us a memorable 2 CD release.

Valentin Rautiu and Per Rundberg are brilliant artists, the cello tone is emphesized through Radutiu’s soaring cantabile a tone both elastic and wonderfully pure, and his virtuosity is unmatched.

“Rarely can two works that share the one opus number have hailed from such different musical worlds, in the case of Enescu's two cello sonatas as the comfort zone of full-bodied Romanticism and the zestful open-air environment of improvisatory-sounding folk music.” Gramophone Magazine, June 2014

“Both players, throughout show great affinity and understanding.” MusicWeb International, 6th November 2013

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Hänssler - HAEN98021

(CD - 2 discs)

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Enescu - Works for Violin and Piano

Enescu - Works for Violin and Piano


Enescu:

Tarantelle

world premiere recording

Hora Unirei

world premiere recording

Violin Sonata No. 1 in D major, Op. 2

Violin Sonata No. 3 in A minor, Op. 25 'dans le caractère populaire roumain'

Ballade, Op. 4a

Impromptu Concertant in G flat major for violin & piano

Andante malinconico for violin & piano


Remus Azoitei (violin) & Eduard Stan (piano)

Hannsler Classics is proud to present to conclusion to the series of the complete works for violin and piano of George Enescu. This recording contains the 1st and 3rd Violin Sonatas in addition to several shorter works and two world premiere recordings.

“In a hypnotic account of the Third Sonata, Azoitei and Stan demonstrate complete empathy with the quasi-improvisatory nature of the writing. Superb playing also in the Brahmsian First Sonata.” BBC Music Magazine, February 2009 *****

“…Azoitei and Stan combine temperament, mastery of idiom and executive elegance in a very special way. They shape the music beautifully, so that what in some hands sounds like mere extended improvisation (a desirable attribute admittedly) also parades discernable form.” Gramophone Magazine, February 2009

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Hänssler - HAEN98240

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Remembering the Rain – A Jazz View

Remembering the Rain – A Jazz View


Bartók:

Pe loc (No 3 from Romanian Folk Dances)

Der Stampfer (from Romanian Folk Dances)

Coltrane:

Autumn Serenade

Enescu:

Languir me fais

Evans, B:

Interplay

Laurie

Remembering the rain

Kern:

Smoke gets in your eyes

Lewis, John:

Django

Rieck:

Interlude

Schaefer:

Almeria


Valentin Radutiu (cello), Benjamin Schaefer (piano) & Markus Rieck (drums)

Only a few, famous jazz bassists have ever gone beyond the limitations of their instruments and sought new opportunities on the cello. Now, the cellist Valentin Radutiu has turned the tables and shows how well the cello suits jazz – at times taking the role of the traditional string bass, at others, a resonant tenor guitar while at others, he gives its voice wings.

The tendency to experiment with musical material is deep within this cellist - he is constantly exploring new sounds to expand the expressive range of his instrument. The repertoire of this extraordinary album comes mainly from the 'Great American Songbook', supplementing that glorious heritage with standards by Cool Jazz purveyor John Lewis and master improviser Bill Evans, both of whom had their own anchors in classical music as well.

Aiding and abetting this project, this "exceptional cellist" (as the Süddeutsche Zeitung described Valentin Radutiu), are two seasoned jazzmen, Benjamin Schaefer and Markus Rieck, who in their own right are among the most renowned cross-over artists in their field, and bring just the right mixture of risk and reserve. This team exhibits a lot of mutual respect and along with adding dash of wit and a light touch, the fusion works and the centre holds!

'Remembering the Rain' is not about creating a revolution or tearing down imaginary walls. Rather, it moves at a deliberate pace, allows the cello to step out of its classical provenance and stretch its 'legs'. Because this music is not about confrontation - Remembering the Rain' is an exciting opportunity for Valentin Radutius to take his immense skills in a new and different direction, and playfully engage with the music he loves and broaden his audiences’ emotional and aesthetic perspective in the process.

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Hänssler - HAEN93331

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