Pierre-Laurent Aimard and his longtime musical partner Pierre Boulez team up to present two of the most significant piano concertos of the French classical canon. A recording highlight of the year!
In joining forces with The Cleveland Orchestra – which Boulez has conducted and recorded with regularly since the 1960s – Aimard and Boulez guarantee a superlative reading of these Ravel blockbusters.
Recorded live in Cleveland in February 2010, the Plain Dealer (Cleveland) states after the concerts: “The other incontrovertible star this weekend is pianist Pierre-Laurent Aimard, soloist in Ravel's two piano concertos. Like Boulez, the peerless nature of his performances, which are being recorded by Deutsche Grammophon, is no surprise”.
This release is Pierre-Laurent Aimard’s first concerto album on Deutsche Grammophon. In the opinion of The Independent, “It is hard to imagine a pianist better qualified to play works by Ravel . . . than Pierre-Laurent Aimard.”
477 8770, B 0014764-1 Ravel: Piano Concerto for the Left Hand in D major (1931)
477 8770, B 0014764-2 Ravel: Concerto in G major - 1. Allegramente
477 8770, B 0014764-3 Ravel: Concerto in G major - 2. Adagio Assai
477 8770, B 0014764-4 Ravel: Concerto in G major - 3. Presto
477 8770, B 0014764-7 Ravel: Miroirs No.3 - Miroirs 3 Une Barque Sur L'ocean
477 8770, B 0014764-8 Ravel: Miroirs No.4 - Miroirs 4 Albroada Del Gracioso
477 8770, B 0014764-9 Ravel: Miroirs No.5 - La Vallee Des Cloches
“There are surely few conductors alive who can bring Ravel's miraculous, deft orchestral colours to life with such lucidity and suppleness as Boulez...Aimard, too, is a pianist completely immersed in the French repertoire of the 20th century and attuned to Ravel's particular sound world.”
“Boulez unravels the dark, intricate introductory orchestral textures [of the Left-Hand Concerto] with a refinement nobody else can touch, and Aimard's percussive tenacity is just what's needed.”
15th October 2010
“These two musicians have worked together ever since their time with the Ensemble Intercontemporain, which helps explain the seamless union of soloist and orchestra on this album of Ravel's two Piano Concertos.”
17th October 2010
“The combination of Aimard and Boulez is a perfect meeting of minds...They achieve such precision, one marvels that both concertos are live performances from Cleveland’s Severance Hall — the great orchestra plays with a range of colour and dynamics to match Aimard’s astonishing palette of sound.”
23rd October 2010
“Aimard brings clarity, delicacy and poise to the G minor concerto...[He] is at his best alone in the studio with Miroirs, in which his judgement of timbre and colour really is unbeatable.”
28th October 2010
“Boulez and Pierre-Laurent Aimard make a combination that's...formidable...especially in the left-handed work, where Boulez conjures up all the serpentine hues of the orchestral writing magnificently and Aimard gives a savage edge to the solo part.”
“in the G major Concerto Aimard and Boulez favour dry rather than sparkling wit...The invaluable coupling is an enthralling account of Miroirs. Aimard crackles with energy in 'Alborada del gracioso', and his poetry in 'La vallée des cloches' is utterly sublime”
“It was only a matter of time before Pierre Laurent Aimard tackled the Ravel concertos. Few such pairs complement each other so perfectly in matters technical and expressive, Aimard alighting on their differences while rendering them equally characteristic of the composer's maturity.”
Click on any of the works listed above for alternative recordings.