Britten: Piano Concerto In D, Op. 13 - 3. Impromptu
Britten: Piano Concerto In D, Op. 13 - 4. March
Britten: Violin Concerto In D Minor, Op. 15 - 1. Moderato Con Moto
Britten: Violin Concerto In D Minor, Op. 15 - 2. Vivace
Britten: Violin Concerto In D Minor, Op. 15 - 3. Passacaglia: Andante Lento
“Just after Britten's performances were released on LP in 1971, the composer admitted with some pride that Sviatoslav Richter had learned his Piano Concerto 'entirely off his own bat', and had revealed a Russianness that was in the score. Britten was attracted to Shostakovich during the late 1930s, when it was written, and the bravado, brittleness and flashy virtuosity of the writing, in the march-like finale most of all, at first caused many to be wary of it, even to think it somehow outside the composer's style. Now we know his music better, it's easier to accept, particularly in this sparkling yet sensitive performance. The Violin Concerto dates from the following year, 1939, and it, too, has its self-conscious virtuosity, but it's its rich nostalgic lyricism which strikes to the heart and the quiet elegiac ending is unforgettable. Compared to Richter in the other work, Mark Lubotsky isn't always the master of its hair-raising difficulties, notably in the Scherzo, which has passages of double artificial harmonics that even Heifetz wanted simplified before he would play it (Britten refused), but this is still a lovely account. Fine recordings.”
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