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Four years after his last solo recital disc of piano sonatas by Haydn (V5070), this is the much-awaited new project for Naïve by the celebrated pianist Fazil Say. The three pieces featured here, Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition, Janacek’s Sonata “1.X.1905” , and Prokofiev’s Piano Sonata No. 7, are powerful and intense works composed between 1874 and 1942, frequently performed by Fazil Say in concert. Also included is a bonus DVD which features a concert performance of “Pictures” and some behind the scene footage.
The Turkish pianist and composer Fazil Say was born in Ankara and studied piano and composition at the State Conservatory of his home city. At seventeen he was awarded a scholarship enabling him to work for five years with David Levine at the Robert Schumann Institute in Düsseldorf. Fazil Say’s discography includes a recording of Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue with the New York Philharmonic and Kurt Masur, a Bach recital, and Stravinsky’s four-hand arrangement of The Rite of Spring, in which Say plays both parts himself. This recording brought him several international awards, including the 2001 Echo Preis Klassik and the German Music Critics’ Best Recording of the Year. His first recording with Naïve was entirely devoted to his own music, while the second featured three Mozart concertos performed with the Zurich Chamber Orchestra conducted by Howard Griffiths. A CD of Beethoven piano sonatas was released in 2005, and a selection of Haydn sonatas in 2007. Fazil Say is not only a solo pianist, but also a composer, improviser, and regular collaborator with award winning violinist Patricia Kopatchinskaja (V5246). His most recent release is a recital with Kopatchinskaja of music by Beethoven, Ravel, Bartók, and his own violin sonata.
Disc Two (DVD):
1. Concert recorded in February 2011, MC2: Grenoble (Filmed by Jean-Pierre Loisil)
2. Bonus: “Behind the scenes of the recording” “Hinter den Kulissen”
Region: 0 (All Regions) / Rating: Exempt from Certification
Duration: 80 minutes / Picture Format: NTSC
Modest Petrovich Mussorgsky: Pictures at an Exhibition
I. Gnomus - Promenade
II. Old Castle - Promenade
IV. Bydlo - Promenade
V. Ballet of the Chickens in their Shells
VI. Samuel Goldenberg and Schmuyle
VII. The Market-Place at Limoges
VIII. Catacombae (Sepulcrum romanum) - Con mortuis in lingua mortua
IX. The Hut on Fowl's Legs (Baba-Yaga)
X. The Great Gate at Kiev
Leos Janacek: 1.X.1905 (Z ulice dne 1. rijna 1905) (From the Street, 1 October 1905), JW VIII/19, "Sonata"
I. Predtucha (Foreboding): Con moto
II. Smrt (Death)
Sergey Prokofiev: Piano Sonata No. 7 in B flat major, Op. 83
I. Allegro inquieto - Poco meno - Andantino
II. Andante caloroso - Poco piu animato - Piu largamente - Un poco agitato
“You get a lot for your money in this set beyond the superb studio recording...The open discussion between the pianist and his producer is a breath of fresh air; it really does capture the pleasures and stresses of the recording event...This is what I would call a true 'pianist's performance': absolutely centred playing with virtually no need for pedal and a controlled tempo even in the more strenuous bars. Overall, this emerges as the best piano playing I have heard in some time.”
Click on any of the works listed above for alternative recordings.