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Schumann's op. 54 Piano Concerto

Discussion in 'Repertoire' started by sarah, Jun 3, 2009.

  1. sarah

    sarah New Member

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    So, I haven't decided whether this topic fits better in the "Pianists" section or in the "Repertoire" section, so I'm putting it in the latter. Admins, feel free to move it wherever it belongs. :D

    I'm looking for a very good recording of Schumann's a min. Piano Concerto (op. 54) - something that's very expressive, taking a more dramatic approach over an overly serious one. For some reason I haven't been able to track down a recording I really like. Right now I've got Fleisher's recording made with the Cincinnati Orchestra, but I miss the dramatic exchanges between piano and orchestra that I really think ought to be in that concerto. The whole outlook seems rather solemn. Does anyone have any suggestions? :D
     
  2. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist

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    I have Kissin playing this on a CD with the London Symphony Orchestra. I think it is very good, but I am a little partial to Kissin, so not sure you are a fan of his or not.
     
  3. 88man

    88man Member Piano Society Artist

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    You can't go wrong with Pianolady's recommendation with Kissin/LSO. You might also want to hear Murray Perahia with Sir Colin Davis and the Bavaria Radio Symphony Orchestra (Sony). Perahia brings both muscle and a golden tone to the Schumann Concerto. Good balance between the orchestra and piano.
     
  4. sarah

    sarah New Member

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    Thank you very much for your help! I'll get that. I haven't really heard too many recordings of Kissin :oops:, but the few I did I really liked. So I'll definitely find that recording. :D

    Thanks alot...I'll probably get this one too. That "muscle and golden tone" idea sounds really good. :D
     
  5. kawaiDoodler

    kawaiDoodler New Member

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    Leif Ove Andsnes has an album containing both Grieg and Schumann's A minor concerti. I honestly have not heard another version of op. 54 (only excerpts in Vitus - the movie about a 12-year old prodigy) but I can tell you that this album is one of the most frequently played albums in my collection!
     
  6. sarah

    sarah New Member

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    Thank you! I had looked at that recording a couple of days ago and was wondering about it. I'll have to get it now. :D Last week I bought Andsnes' recording of some of Beethoven's late sonatas, and really liked his rendition. He seems very good!

    Last week I also got a hold of Van Cliburn's Schumann concerto recording with conductor Fritz Reiner, and I was very impressed with that one too. It seems that there are a lot of good recordings out there... the more, the merrier! :D
     
  7. amelialw

    amelialw New Member

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    take a look at Zimmerman's recording as well as Clara Haskil's
     
  8. arensky

    arensky New Member

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    I was going to reccomend that one, and Gieseking's (postwar I think) with von Karajan also. The Schumann Concerto is an odd duck, there isn't really another Concerto quite like it, and most of the interpretations I've heard are somehow lacking in some way, somehow. I've always wished there was a Horowitz recording, that would have been extraordinary!
     
  9. sarah

    sarah New Member

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    Yeah, the Cliburn recording is one of my favorites so far. I'll have to look at the Gieseking recording. And I do agree about the fact that there always seems to be something not quite right with any recording of that Schumann concerto. And, almost always, there seems to be something to admire, too. Rather odd.

    I'm with you on the Horowitz idea... no matter what critics have had to say about him, there hasn't been anyone of his stature ever since he passed, and I bet there won't be. He had a very unique flair.
     
  10. arensky

    arensky New Member

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    Yes, I didn't mean the recordings were bad, many are wonderful. I have Gieseking on an old LP, it must have been rereleased on CD though.

    Horowitz' Schumann was always brilliant, I've never heard another pianist achieve quite the identification with Schumann that he did, although Lupu and Richter are also masters of his unique style. But Horowitz really tapped into and perhaps identified with the "split personality" aspect of Schumann, and I miss that in most recordings of the Concerto.

    Here's a great one, albeit with a few slips and inaccuracies...


    http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=CB2F949D4502D30B&search_query=schumann+piano+concerto+cortot
     
  11. sarah

    sarah New Member

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    Oh, I understand what you mean about the recordings. :D

    Thanks for the Cortot recording! I hadn't heard a rendition of the concerto by one of the pianists of the "French school," and his take is so interesting. It seems to me he views the music from a different angle than some of the other pianists.

    Perchance, have you run across the Horowitz Schumann CD that was put out by RCA Victor? I borrowed a copy recently and it was just fascinating (I have to get one for myself now :wink:). It seems to me like a lot of college students play the Toccata, but they can't get the schizophrenic feel of the music, as you mentioned - it sounds like a whole bunch of alternately pianissimo/fortissimo banging - but with Horowitz the music comes together perfectly. When I listened to him play the Toccata on that CD I thought, "Well, this is how it's supposed to sound!" I hadn't cared for the piece until then.
     
  12. Rami Bar-Niv

    Rami Bar-Niv Rami Bar-Niv, Pianist, Composer, Author, Teacher Piano Society Artist

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    Sarah and all,
    I am surprised that no one heard my recording of the concerto which is available right here on Piano Society.
    The first movement is offered free for download over here:
    http://server3.pianosociety.com/protect ... ar-niv.mp3
    Enjoy and judge for yourself...
     
  13. hyenal

    hyenal New Member Piano Society Artist

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    Sarah, I found this thread too late... . Do you know Dinu Lipatti's recording with Karajan and Philharmonia Orchestra London (1948) (I guess so... but I'd like to mention this great recording here :wink:)? Within my humble experiences with this concerto that was really the best. The critics say this recording shows how the solo piano and the orchestra can be integrated in this special concerto, which doesn't allow another choice of the cadence.
     
  14. sarah

    sarah New Member

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    Thank you so much for this suggestion, Hye-Jin! No, I don't think I have that recording; I'll get it when I make a CD order here in the near future.
     
  15. avguste

    avguste Member Piano Society Artist

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  16. hyenal

    hyenal New Member Piano Society Artist

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  17. sarah

    sarah New Member

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    Thank you very much for the link, Hye-Jin! I really appreciate it. I just listened to the first movement of the concerto- Limpatti makes it come alive! He plays it so sensitively, and I love how the interactions between the orchestra and soloist are seamless. I'm off to listen to the other two movements. :wink:

    Thanks, Avguste, for Katz's rendition of the Schumann concerto. I listened to it today. He is an amazing young talent!
     
  18. hyenal

    hyenal New Member Piano Society Artist

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    It's my great pleasure, Sarah! I really LOVE that recording. Some people mention the Michelangeli's as the best recording of that concerto, too (I mean, among the "historical" or "legendary" recordings :wink: ). I came by that CD, too, but already forgotten how it was, because I already fell in love with Lipatti's :)
     
  19. robert

    robert New Member Piano Society Artist

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    I am surprised that nobody noticed Rami's reply earlier in this thread. His version is honestly one of the best renditions I have ever heard, and I have heard quite a few!
    Rami is a world famous pianist who I am happy to have aboard and we could probably have a very interesting discussion of this piece with him as he knows it inside out. I promise, he does not bite ;). Have you listened to it?
     
  20. sarah

    sarah New Member

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    I don't think that I had listened to it before, so I listened to it this morning. Really beautiful performance, from a slightly different perspective than I've heard before - very vigorous. It would be interesting and informative to hear what he has to say about the concerto.
    Whew, I'm glad. :wink:
     

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