In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.
The Piano Quintet Op.44 and Piano Quartet Op.47 date from a brief period during which Schumann focused his attention intensively on chamber music (between June 1842 and January 1843). These works underline his wish to escape from the solo piano, now ‘too restricted’ for his overflowing imagination, as he told Clara. The Quintet, which made a powerful impression on Wagner, is probably one of his most sophisticated works, into which Schumann poured all the creative energy he derived from meticulous examination of similar works by his predecessors, especially Beethoven, Mendelssohn and Schubert.
Alexander Melnikov joins the Jerusalem Quartet, nominated for a 3rd BBC Music Magazine Award in 2012.
Schumann: Piano Quartet in E Flat Major, Op.47
I. Sostenuto assai - Allegro ma non troppo
II. Scherzo. Molto vivace
III. Andante cantabile
IV. Finale. Vivace
Schumann: Piano Quintet in E Flat Major, Op.44
I. Allegro brillante
II. In modo d'una Marcia. Un poco largamente
III. Scherzo. Molto vivace
IV. Finale. Allegro, ma non troppo
29th April 2012
“While the piano quartet has great vitality and charm, the quintet is on a different level of achievement: a fiendish pianistic challenge as well as a masterpiece of the genre... In the Russian pianist Alexander Melnikov they have a collaborator of rare musical intelligence as well as virtuosity. Another award contender? I guess so.”
“What makes [Melnikov's] playing so remarkable is an ability to achieve an ideal balance...Melnikov blends his tone to match exactly that of the strings...Naturally the Jerusalem Quartet is a hugely responsive partner in this process...With a recording that offers depth of sound and admirable clarity, Schumann's two chamber masterpieces are brilliantly served.”
“these performances are marked by great sensitivity and freshness as well as having a natural rhythmic flow that is by no means always the case in recordings of these two masterpieces...an immensely satisfying addition to the catalogue. A combination of ardour and control characterizes the supremly musical approach here, with extremely well-judged balance between piano and strings and a strong sense of direction.”
Click on any of the works listed above for alternative recordings.