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Recent Sony Classical signing Khatia Buniatishvili is a phenomenal and acclaimed young artist, and regarded as one of the great pianists of the future. Her debut album for Sony Classical is devoted to Franz Liszt, with a focus on the Faust theme: Liszt’s third Liebestraum is characterised by the line from Goethe’s Faust: ”O stay! Thou art so fair!” and the Mephisto Waltz was inspired by an episode in Nikolaus Lenau’s Faust poem. Moreover Khatia Buniatishvili reads Faust, Marguerite and Mephisto into the themes of the centrepiece of the recording, the Sonata in B Minor – technically one of the most demanding works ever written for piano.
Liebestraum - Notturno No. 3, S 541/3
Sonata B minor, S 178: I. Lento assai - Allegro energico
Sonata B minor, S 178: II. Andante sostenuto
Sonata B minor, S 178: III. Allegro energico
Mephisto Waltz No. 1, The Dance in the Village Inn, S 514
La lugubre gondola No. 2, S 200/2
Bach/Liszt Prelude and Fugue in A minor / after BWV 543, S 462/1: Prelude
Bach/Liszt Prelude and Fugue in A minor / after BWV 543, S 462/1: Fugue
2nd June 2011
“she certainly shows a startling affinity with [Liszt's] very particular musical world. The B minor Sonata is the centrepiece of Buniatishvili's programme, and she goes at it with real ferocity...Her floating of the melody of the Liebestraum, and her elegant weaving through the mysterious harmonies of La Lugubre Gondola, though, show there is much more to her artistry than just full-frontal musical assaults.”
“This debut disc looks like a safe 'Best of Liszt' selection but, thrillingly, is much more than that. Buniatishvili is a young artist with a huge temperament and technique that puts one in mind of the young Martha Argerich.”
“as a result of the focused intensity and sumptuous beauty of tone that Buniatishvili brings to the Liebestraum No. 3 we seem to be hearing this hoary old standard afresh. That mesmeric sense of inwardness is here, too, in the transcription of the Bach A minor Prelude and Fugue - which at first feels like a hallucinatory extension of her eloquently desolate account of the near-atonal Lugubre gondola No. 2.”
“Buniatishvili is at her best in the Bach A minor BWV543 Prelude and Fugue transcription, where her playing becomes far more poised and controlled, without sacrificing one iota of imagination. The latter selection alone is worth the price of admission.”
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