Ravel - Piano Concertos No.1 and No.2
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Cat No: MELCD1002160
Number of Discs: 1
Release Date: 28th April 2014
Pavane pour une infante defunte
Piano Concerto in D major for the left hand
Piano Concerto in G major
ArtistsYakov Zak (piano)
Alexander Slobodyanik (piano)
USSR State Academic Symphony Orchestra
Firma Melodiya presents an album of piano concertos by Maurice Ravel performed by leading Soviet pianists.
Both of Ravel’s concertos are among the composer’s last works and were finished in the early 1930s. The first and most popular concerto is imbued with light and sunny images, and at the same time full of intonations and dance rhythms of the 20th century (jazz, foxtrot, Boston waltz). Ravel’s first concerto is performed by Yakov Zak, one of the brightest representatives of the domestic pianistic school of the middle of the 20th century, a winner of the Third International Chopin Piano Competition in Warsaw, a pupil of Heinrich Neuhaus and a professor who educated quite a number of now famous pianists.
The second concerto, composed for the left hand, has stern and tragic colouring. The part for one hand is rich in virtuosic devices and is extremely difficult. The concerto was recorded on this release by Alexander Slobodyanik, another representative of the Neuhaus school. "Emotional wealth", "completeness of sensations", "spontaneity of artistic experience" are only some of the epithets that accompanied the concerts and recordings of the pianist who actively performed in this country and abroad for over forty years.
The album also features two symphonic works by Ravel – an early piece, Pavane pour une infante défunte (Pavane for a Dead Princess), and the choreographic poem La Valse - performed by the USSR State Academic Symphony Orchestra conducted by Evgeny Svetlanov (as is the first piano concerto).
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