Scriabin, Poulenc, Joyful new yr 2023
This Week in Classical Music: January 2, 2023. Sure, 2023! The primary week of the yr is wealthy in pianistic expertise: January 5th alone is the birthday of three tremendously gifted pianists, Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli (born in 1920) Alfred Brendel (1931), and Maurizio Pollini (1942). The Russian composer Alexander Scriabin was additionally born this week, on January 6th of 1872. Scriabin, himself a piano virtuoso, wrote many items for the instrument: quite a few preludes, etudes, impromptus, mazurkas, poèmes, and ten numbered sonatas, not counting two early piano items in that kind. We thought that we might discover some Scriabin recordings by our pianists to rejoice each their artwork and that of the composer, however alas, there have been none. Michelangeli had a relatively restricted repertoire, Brendel’s was a lot broader however despite the fact that he did play some Twentieth-century music, he largely targeting German classics. What stunned us probably the most was the absence of Scriabin’s recordings in Pollini’s discography. Pollini performed so many composers, from Bach to Luigi Nono, that we thought he would’ve recorded some Scriabin alongside the best way, however we have been mistaken: not a single document exists. Whether or not Pollini performed Scriabin in live shows we don’t know, so we needed to flip to an excellent interpreter of Scriabin’s music, Sviatoslav Richter. Right here’s Sonata no. 5 in F sharp main, Op 53, recorded by Richter in Prague on September 24, 1972.
The great French composer Francis Poulenc was additionally born this week, on January 7th of 1899. Soirées de Nazelles (Nazelles evenings) is a set of variations that Poulenc composed between 1930 and 1936 (Nazelles is a small city on the Loire not removed from Excursions). Right here’s the outline on the high of the rating, written by Poulenc himself: “The variations that kind the middle of this work have been improvised at Nazelles throughout lengthy nation evenings whereby the composer performed “portraits” for buddies gathered round his piano. We hope that these variations, each someplace between a primary draft and a completed work, can have the facility to evoke this sport within the spirit of a Touraine area front room – with a window open to the night time.” Right here’s Soirées de Nazelles carried out by the French pianist Pascal Rogé.
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