Wednesday, 8 April 2009

259. Frédéric Chopin - Piano Concertos 1 & 2 (1829,1830)


Title: Piano Concertos Nos. 1&2
Performer: Murray Perahia, Israel Philharmonic Orchestra
Conductor: Zubin Metha
Length: 1 hour 20 minutes


Chopin's piano concertos combine his usual piano brilliance with quite competent orchestration. Frankly Chopin is all about the piano, the orchestral accompaniment does, however, work exceedingly well with the piano solo.

In the orchestral sections of the concerts Chopin is considerably more bold in sound than he often is with his piano compositions, this does serve to contrast with the exceedingly delicate sections on the piano.

It is in these delicate piano sections where the true brilliance of Chopin comes to the top. The orchestral sections are good but not recognisably Chopinesque, while the piano is unmistakably his. Still a pretty amazing pair of concerts, with maybe number 1 being slightly superior to the second one.

Final Grade



From Wikipedia:

About the first concerto:

Classical critics usually fall into one of two schools of thought concerning the piece. The first of these says that given that Chopin was a composer for the piano first and foremost; the orchestral part of this piece acts more as a vehicle for the pianist, with the individual instrumental parts being uninteresting to perform. The second suggests that the orchestral backing is carefully and deliberately written to fit in with the sound of the piano, and that the simplicity of arrangement is in deliberate contrast to the complexity of the harmony.

First movement of first concerto:

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