Liszt poured a wealth of ingenuity and an astonishing degree of diversity into works for piano. EMI Classics' exclusive 10-CD set of Liszt's greatest piano works features keyboard virtuosi from generations past and present including Leif Ove Andsnes, Aldo Ciccolini, Georges Cziffra and Lionel Rogg.
This 8CD set bring the listener back to the roots of Minimalism, all works were written in the seventies of the 20th century, a time when the new aesthetics and perception of music, sound, repetition and time experience were creating a new chapter in music history. The longest piece is the 5 hour “November” by Dennis Johnson, a work in which the player is free to build the intervals and chords according to his own timing and spacing. The other composers in this set are Philip Glass, Tom Johnson, Peter Garland, Terry Riley, Harold Budd and La Monte Young.
The intent of this set is pretty clear from the titles of each of the six discs: Meditations; Orchestral Fireworks; Invitation to the Dance; Nocturne; Pomp & Circumstance; Grand Opera. This is mood or 'theme' music designed to provide either a background or a sequence of 'tasters' initiating the person who comes fresh to classical music with a sampling from the 'great and the good'. True the 'great and the good' are all from the core repertoire; not even a scintilla of Janacek, Nielsen, Adams, Reich which is a shame.
A collection with top musicians! This set of 25 CD's offers superb quality piano music equally superbly executed by outstanding musicians such as Alfred Brendel, Sviatoslav Richter, Helene Grimaud, Hakon Austbo, Emil Gilels, Yevgeny Kissin… and the list goes on. Because of its repertoire and the outstanding performers The Piano Collection is an excellent choice for both newly "recruited" music lovers and connoisseurs.
There's perhaps a touch of irony in the title of Dutch pianist and composer Jeroen van Veen's box set Minimal Piano Collection because at nine discs, it's a pretty massive collection. The program booklet notes that he recorded the entire set, which includes more than ten hours of music, in only six days, an astounding feat. In the program notes, van Veen offers a remarkably clear and concise history of minimalism in music. He defines it broadly enough (following the lead of composer and critic Tom Johnson) to include works by Friedrich Nietzsche and Satie. Philip Glass is the composer most widely represented, with three of the set's nine CDs devoted to his music originally for piano, as well as transcriptions from his film scores and operas. Two discs are given to van Veen's mammoth 24 Préludes, organized according to the framework of Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier. Other composers range from the very well known, such as Michael Nyman, John Adams, Terry Riley, Arvo Pärt, and John Cage, to the familiar-to-specialists, like Tom Johnson, Wim Mertens, and Jacob ter Veldhuis, to those little-known to American audiences, like Klaas de Vries, Simeon ten Holt, John Borstlap, Yann Tiersen, and Carlos Micháns.