Piano Concerto No 2
- Is Discontinued By Manufacturer : いいえ
- 製品サイズ : 14.27 x 12.5 x 0.84 cm; 108.86 g
- メーカー : RCA
- EAN : 0828766086027
- 商品モデル番号 : 2194569
- SPARSコード : ADD
- レーベル : RCA
- ASIN : B0002DD5U2
- ディスク枚数 : 1
- Amazon 売れ筋ランキング: - 463,284位ミュージック (の売れ筋ランキングを見るミュージック)
Two supreme masterpieces of the piano literature played by a supreme master of the instrument--could there be a more felicitous combination? Brahms wrote his first sonata in 1853, his second concerto almost 30 years later; Richter recorded the concerto in 1960 on his first American tour, the sonata almost 30 years later live at a barn in Germany. The sonata is so formidable technically and musically that it is performed very rarely; the concerto, one of Brahms's greatest mature works, has become a beloved staple of the repertoire. Richter, a well-hidden Soviet treasure until the end of the Cold War, became an instant sensation in the West, and this recording proves again that his playing was unique. It combined seemingly incompatible qualities: his tone had the transparent lucidity of fine lace, with impeccably articulated passage-work and perfectly balanced voicing both in contrapuntal lines and chords, yet it also had an infinite range of colors and inflections; sonorous and sustained, as if he were caressing rather than striking the keys, it was never harsh and could go from massive power to an elfin, gossamer delicacy. His mental and emotional concentration were riveting: he could spin long, arching phrases, build up tension and intensity, and maintain a sense of structure and coherence; his transitions and mood changes were poised and organic. His Brahms interpretation is monumental: classically austere, yet romantically free and ardent, it enters into the youthful, heroic tempestuousness of the sonata and the wistful, dreamy melancholy and profound inwardness of the concerto; the slow movements are pure magic. From the first notes of the very expansive, other-worldly opening of the concerto we know that we are about to embark on an extraordinary experience. The orchestra matches the pianist's every mood and expression and sounds rich and glorious; the prominent horn and cello solos are wonderful. --Edith Eisler
The opening piano peroration is not overdone but immediately captures one's attention with its classical eloquence. Richter does not linger and milk passages for individual spotlit effects but moves with the overall music argument forward. Richter's way is not to throw a giant spotlight on individual passages but to integrate all those details into a powerful and convincing whole. He does make use of ebb and flow and rubato when it fits the dialogue between hands or between piano and orchestra, but it never seems artificially contrived. This is not say that all is control or that Richter does not sometimes get carried away by emotions. In building some passages he can push the tempo, apparently caught up in the excitement (but Leinsdorf is ready), but it does not seem excessive. The second movement Allegro Appassionato, a scherzo (like Mahler in his sixth symphony, there is a relentless, breathtaking quality in urgent forward motion achieved here by following an all encompassing opening Allegro with a passionate scherzo), keeps the listener enthralled. The third movement Andante is poetic with beautiful surfaces, and relieves the turbulence of the preceding 26 minutes. The finale, an Allegretto grazioso, is the one part of the concerto that half-heartedly lives up to Brahms' advance billing of this composition, when he called the scherzo a "tiny wisp of a scherzo". It is played with tenderness and exuberant joy.
The Chicago Symphony Orchestra under Erich Leinsdorf provides Richter a resplendent, magnificent canvas on which to portray the genius of Brahms. The sound is early RCA Victor stereo, which set very high standards and was rarely matched subsequently by RCA and the industry in later decades, especially in the concerto repertoire.
RCA fills out the disc with the Beethoven influenced Brahms Piano Sonata no.1, Op 1, a nice idea, as this work is rarely heard or performed. (The usual fillers are shorter solo works from mid or late Brahms, or else the Tragic or Academic Festival Overtures.)
Richter's performance of the concerto definitely sounds fleeter than what I'm used to; this seemed like it was over in no time! I had to check his timing of the first movement against that of the other two recordings I have: Richter/Leinsdorf 16:43, Gilels/Jochum 18:22, Cliburn/Reiner 17:49. Total time: Richter/Leinsdorf 46:46, Gilels/Jochum 51:44, Cliburn/Reiner 48:21. In any case, Richter's pianism is alternatingly brawny and delicate with fine phrasing and judgement of shifting dynamics. The meltingly beautiful andante third movement is also played somewhat swiftly, but Richter's quiet, introspective probing in conjunction with the cello solo from the orchestra is a paragon of pianistic poetry, though it didn't make my dry eyes well up as Gilels' did. The recorded sound is just fine, but could never be mistaken for a modern recording.
The weakness of this recording is two-fold. The recorded sound is a bit brittle and thin (now coniserably improved in RCA's current remastering). Richter isn't given the gorgeous sonority one hears from Pollini on DG with Abbado (particulary their 1995 remake in digital sound). And Leinsdorf, if better than his usual literal self, at times seems to impede what Richter wants to do. They open the first movement in different worlds, but after that, Leinsdorf manages to gather enough momentum to keep up with his soloist. One wonders how unleashed Richter would have been if the shceduled conductor (I think it was Reiner) hadn't bowed out.
Those two drawbacks aside, this superb CD will never go out of print. As you listen to Richter so totally dominate the closing pages, you feel glad about that--every future improvement in sound will make the performance more alive. The coupling is his equally acclaimed performance of Brahms's youthful First Sonata, in all its rambling glory. The pianist was much older, in his early seventies, when this live account from 1988 was captured. The piano sound is a bit too clangy and brittle, but in this repertoire Richter was competing only with himself.