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Re: Great pianists of the 20th century rarely discussed on PW [Re: pianoloverus] #2878789 08/12/19 06:19 AM
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Valery Kastelsky made some wonderful Scriabin recordings in the 70's.

Also among my favorites among the little less known pianists of the last century are Aldo Ciccolini and Alexis Weissenberg.

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Re: Great pianists of the 20th century rarely discussed on PW [Re: pianoloverus] #2878792 08/12/19 06:24 AM
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I was fortunate to attend a recital by Alicia de Larrocha in 1971 at Hunter College, New York. I don't remember every piece on the program and, unfortunately, I didn't save the program. But I do remember her magnificent performance of the Bach/Busoni "Chaconne." This was my first exposure to this piece and it made a powerful impression.

Re: Great pianists of the 20th century rarely discussed on PW [Re: pianoloverus] #2878820 08/12/19 08:25 AM
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My favorite Scriabin Fantasy played live in 1950 by Lazar Berman. Extraordinary technique and beauty in this rarely played piece. He's also my benchmark for the Liszt's transcendental etudes. Here's the marvelous Scriabin:

https://youtu.be/3fIRsesUXws

Re: Great pianists of the 20th century rarely discussed on PW [Re: kbrod1] #2878841 08/12/19 09:53 AM
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Originally Posted by kbrod1
My favorite Scriabin Fantasy played live in 1950 by Lazar Berman. Extraordinary technique and beauty in this rarely played piece. He's also my benchmark for the Liszt's transcendental etudes. Here's the marvelous Scriabin:

https://youtu.be/3fIRsesUXws


I was just thinking of Lazar Berman and this album from the 70s:

https://www.discogs.com/Lazar-Berman-Encores/release/6064256

Also, Walter Klein, who did a lot of recording. His complete Mozart Sonatas is one of the best recordings of those works.


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Re: Great pianists of the 20th century rarely discussed on PW [Re: WhoDwaldi] #2878848 08/12/19 10:03 AM
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^^ Klien^^ !

(very often misspelled)

Re: Great pianists of the 20th century rarely discussed on PW [Re: Mark_C] #2878855 08/12/19 10:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
^^ Klien^^ !

(very often misspelled)


Heard him live. I remember that he paired the Mozart C-minor Fantasy with the Beethoven C-minor Sonata.


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Re: Great pianists of the 20th century rarely discussed on PW [Re: WhoDwaldi] #2878877 08/12/19 11:21 AM
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Originally Posted by WhoDwaldi


I was just thinking of Lazar Berman and this album from the 70s:

https://www.discogs.com/Lazar-Berman-Encores/release/6064256



Lazar Berman also recorded a fabulous version of the 2 piano concertos by Liszt with Giulini.

Re: Great pianists of the 20th century rarely discussed on PW [Re: pianoloverus] #2878894 08/12/19 12:19 PM
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I'd add Simon Barere to the mix. His recording of Liszt's arrangement of Gounod's "Faust" is what got me hooked on his playing. The coda (from 8:30 onwards) is absolutely stupendous:


Last edited by PianoYos; 08/12/19 12:21 PM.
Re: Great pianists of the 20th century rarely discussed on PW [Re: Mark_C] #2878901 08/12/19 12:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
^^ Klien^^ !

(very often misspelled)


Ooops. 😆


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Re: Great pianists of the 20th century rarely discussed on PW [Re: pianoloverus] #2878916 08/12/19 02:26 PM
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I'm an admirer of the recordings of Vera Gornostaeva. She is much more known as a teacher than a performer, largely because she was considered politically "unreliable" in the old Soviet Union and not allowed to travel on a broad scale. Most of her recordings are from live recitals, usually on bad pianos and bad recording equipment. But she seems to have been a force.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S-OeOp0chK4&list=PLLPZtW7qo59gc0iIHbNB8lwX2nnq4iVGe


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Re: Great pianists of the 20th century rarely discussed on PW [Re: pianoloverus] #2878993 08/12/19 07:21 PM
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I heard Lazar Berman several times and was at his Carnegie Hall debut. He played the complete Liszt Transcendental etudes just like on his recording as if child's play. His repertoire was small compared to other pianists of his stature though. He made a very fine recording of Rachmaninoff's moment musical. Simon Barere was a super virtuoso and the harder the music the faster he would play it. With that said, he could play quite beautifully as well. He recorded an unparalleled Blumenthal etude for the left hand. I believed he died on stage at Carnegie while playing the Grieg Concerto.

Re: Great pianists of the 20th century rarely discussed on PW [Re: pianoloverus] #2879105 08/13/19 07:26 AM
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I heard Lazar Berman live at the Victoria Concert Hall in Singapore (i believe in 1999) playing Chopin's 6 Polonaises and Rachmaninoff's Moment Musicaux. It was one of the most memorable recitals i have attended to date. Despite Berman's reputation as barnstorming virthoso, on this ocassion what moved me was his unhurried, aristocratic sense of timing and an incredibly enveloping, deep dark sonority that i have never heard equalled in this hall.

I also heard Igor Zhukov in the same hall back in 1995. Although he had a minor memory lapse (i believe in Chopin's 3rd Sonata), he too produced a big boned, luminscent tone that has stuck with me all these years.

Two great pianists indeed


Sauter Delta 185, Bosendorfer 225, Ibach F III 215


Re: Great pianists of the 20th century rarely discussed on PW [Re: pianoloverus] #2879408 08/13/19 10:59 PM
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I first heard Alexis Weissenberg’s Scarlatti Sonatas back in the 1980s and spent many hours listening to the CD. I admire his artistry and sparkling clarity. I also admire his Franck Prelude, Fugue and Variations. Unfortunately, I never saw him perform live.

I was fortunate to hear Ivan Moravec perform in the early 1990s. He programmed several works by Debussy and Beethoven - gorgeous.






Re: Great pianists of the 20th century rarely discussed on PW [Re: PianoYos] #2881151 08/18/19 10:37 PM
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Originally Posted by PianoYos
I'd add Simon Barere to the mix. His recording of Liszt's arrangement of Gounod's "Faust" is what got me hooked on his playing. The coda (from 8:30 onwards) is absolutely stupendous:



Barere is a lunatic. His technique was colossal but undignified and he often loses control. This can be highly entertaining for Liszt but it's horrendous for Schumann...take a look.



Missing notes, inconsistent tempo (if he couldn't play all of it that fast then he should've started slower), overall it's just a mess.

His Islamey is supreme, although I don't care so much for the piece itself.

Last edited by achoo42; 08/18/19 10:39 PM.

Schumann is the mann.
Re: Great pianists of the 20th century rarely discussed on PW [Re: achoo42] #2881269 08/19/19 10:38 AM
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Originally Posted by achoo42
[quote=PianoYos]

His Islamey is supreme, although I don't care so much for the piece itself.


Aww, but I love Islamey. It's a huge concoction of pianistic devices that make it more difficult than the musical content would seem to necessitate but I have to give it it's due for not devolving to empty early Liszt note slinging.

On that note, though he seemed to suffer somewhat from the Neuhaus syndrome of being uneven in performance and could often sound flippant and detached my gold medal for best Islamey goes to the young Sergio Fiorentino:



Speaking of Neuhaus:







Definitely my favorite Polonaise Fantasie.

Re: Great pianists of the 20th century rarely discussed on PW [Re: pianoloverus] #2881355 08/19/19 02:05 PM
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That Fiorentino Islamey is great. It's one of the very few I like. My favourite is Gavrilov.

I've always thought Islamey is supposed to conjure up exotic images, with its wonderful use of harmonic colour and rhythm, and its Central Asian thematic material. In its day, it was regarded highly for its originality, and many composers orchestrated it. Over the last 150 years (within a few weeks), it has been hammered out as something of a vulgar showpiece, which I think is a shame.


Re: Great pianists of the 20th century rarely discussed on PW [Re: johnstaf] #2881374 08/19/19 03:17 PM
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Originally Posted by johnstaf
That Fiorentino Islamey is great. It's one of the very few I like. My favourite is Gavrilov.

I've always thought Islamey is supposed to conjure up exotic images, with its wonderful use of harmonic colour and rhythm, and its Central Asian thematic material. In its day, it was regarded highly for its originality, and many composers orchestrated it. Over the last 150 years (within a few weeks), it has been hammered out as something of a vulgar showpiece, which I think is a shame.
I






Yes, the Gavrilov is wonderful too. I remember listening to it during high school study hall and being captivated. grin

I agree. It's a shame the work is treated simply as a vulgar show piece. I consider it a tone poem beyond even the great lisztian ones.

Re: Great pianists of the 20th century rarely discussed on PW [Re: pianoloverus] #2881400 08/19/19 04:53 PM
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I'm half way through the second volume of Notable 29th Century Pianists I mentioned in my OP. I find the book very interesting and my only criticism is that the quotes from reviews for each pianist seem endless. For almost most every pianist the book discusses there are several fascinating tidbits mentioned.

Here's one example. When Josef Lhevinne first played for Busoni which of these pieces do you think he played(you can choose more than one)?

Schumann Toccata, Brahms Paganini Variations, Liszt Feux-Follets, Rubinstein Octave Etude, Chopin Winter Wind and Thirds Etudes

Answer
all of them

Last edited by pianoloverus; 08/19/19 04:57 PM.
Re: Great pianists of the 20th century rarely discussed on PW [Re: pianoloverus] #2881412 08/19/19 05:21 PM
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Originally Posted by pianoloverus


Answer
all of them


Wow! I can only imagine.

Re: Great pianists of the 20th century rarely discussed on PW [Re: MikeN] #2881445 08/19/19 07:13 PM
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Originally Posted by MikeN
Originally Posted by pianoloverus


Answer
all of them


Wow! I can only imagine.



"Show off" grin



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