…Dedova is an artist of the highest caliber and she takes the listener on this journey through Debussy’s landscape as a knowledgeable and confident guide…
"…Stefan Irmer has clearly studied and truly learned this music. So often on a disc of rarely performed music one gets the feeling that the pianist is sight-reading the notes in order to make a recording of previously unrecorded music. Not so here. Irmer performs with wonderful clarity, variety of tone, panache, and commitment. He truly sells the music.
Natural recorded sound, capturing very well the 1901 Steinway used for the recording, rounds out a delightful disc." ~Fanfare
Howard Shelley is acclaimed as the living master of early Romantic piano music. So much of this music was ignored throughout the twentieth century that there is still a sense of discovery at each new recording. Shelley here presents the first instalment of a six-volume set of Mendelssohn’s complete solo piano music—perhaps the least well-known part of the composer’s repertoire.
This second volume begins with the Three Études. These are among Glazunov's most important works for the piano and stand at the pinnacle of Russian virtuoso piano writing. The main work represented is the Theme and Variations, Op 72, which uses as the theme for fifteen variations the same folk-song as Glazunov's later Finnish Fantasy for orchestra. The work was written in the same year as the first piano sonata and is undoubtedly one of Glazunov's most successful forays into the piano medium. The others pieces ………
Jean-Yves Thibaudet has undertaken the complete solo piano works of another late nineteenth/early twentieth century French composer: Erik Satie. This even includes a sample of Vexations, that theme and two variations that Satie instructs to be played slowly, 840 times. It's interesting to compare Thibaudet's interpretations of these works with those of Aldo Ciccolini, who was one of Thibaudet's teachers. Overall, Thibaudet gives a less-Romantic interpretation, with less overt emotion and more introverted abstraction, but it is not overly academic.
The Italian composer Riccardo Malipiero (1914–2003), nephew of the better-known Gian Francesco Malipiero, was one of the pioneers of twelve-tone technique in Italy. His six published piano works – recorded here for the first time – encapsulate half-a-century of development, from the post-Respighian 14 variazioni of 1938, via the Bachian Invenzioni and the virtuosic Costellazioni, to the classicism of the Diario second of 1985. But Malipiero’s concern was more with individuality of expression than with modernist dogma, and he was happy to break the rules in pursuit of colour and variety.