Edition Klavier-Festival Ruhr Vol.35: Brahms, Reger & Busoni | C-AVI AVI8553361

Edition Klavier-Festival Ruhr Vol.35: Brahms, Reger & Busoni

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Label: C-AVI

Cat No: AVI8553361

Format: CD

Number of Discs: 3

Genre: Instrumental

Release Date: 31st March 2017



Johannes Brahms’s piano oeuvre was one of the 2016 Ruhr Piano Festival’s main themes. That emphasis is reflected, naturally, in the choice of works for our annual boxed set of CDs, along with the anniversaries of two further composers, the works of whom are – quite unjustly – seldom performed: Max Reger (marking the 100th anniversary of his death), and Ferruccio Busoni (celebrating the 150th anniversary of his birth).

Brahms’s Variations and Fugue on a Theme by Handel, op.24, can be viewed as an act of artistic liberation, here in a version by young German-Korean pianist Christopher Park, who performed his début recital at the Festival. Finally, Max Reger’s technically and musically challenging Variations and Fugue on a Theme by Georg Philip Telemann, op.134, are heard in a virtuoso rendition by Joseph Moog. Max Reger’s Watercolors (Aquarelles), op.25, pay homage to the Romantic piano tradition, performed by Anna Tsybuleva, whom we invited as the laureate of the 2015 Leeds Competition. Then we hear Reger’s Dreams at the Fireside, op.143, in an interpretation with which Joseph Moog left his audience thoroughly satisfied. This CD also contains several epochal works by one of the most influential composers and musical thinkers of the early 20th century: Ferruccio Busoni. Here Busoni dared to explore uncharted territories and wrote music clearly oriented towards the future.

Our third CD is exclusively devoted to the piano oeuvre of Johannes Brahms. “And he has come: a young man over whose cradle Graces and Heroes have stood watch”: those were the words with which Robert Schumann paid tribute to his young colleague’s artistry. The Vier Balladen, op.10, are an early work which Brahms composed in Düsseldorf in 1854: here 22-year-old Gina Alice displayed her impressive keyboard mastery when she gave her début Ruhr Piano Festival recital this year. Those four poetic gems are followed by the Seven Fantasias, op.116, and the Six Pieces for Piano, op.118: two late cycles that contain some of Brahms’s most well-known miniatures. The third CD closes with the wonderful Rhapsody No.1 in B Minor, op.79, in a multifaceted, congenial interpretation by Louis Schwizgebel – a further début recital at this year’s Festival.

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