Russian Piano Concertos Trailer [OUT NOW]

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This fascinating survey of the Russian (and Polish!) piano concerto in 15 CDs includes the masterworks of Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninov – beloved examples at the pinnacle of both Russian music and the piano concerto genre – along with more- and lesser-known yet all eminently worthy works by composers from both Imperial and Soviet Russia and those by Paderewski, Scharwenka and Moszkowski, who were born in what today is Poland.

Though the piano concerto is now inextricably linked in modern minds to the Russian repertoire, the area’s isolation meant that it would take some time for the genre to take hold there, but that it would grow into a unique, characteristic and varied expression. The accompanying essay by David Moncur leads interested readers logically along the timeline of the genre’s development in the east of Europe, exploring the generational and stylistic interconnections between fellow-composers and musician colleagues who were teachers, mentors, supporters and dedicatees.

There is a special quality to Russian Piano Concertos: apart from their jaw-dropping virtuosity and orchestral brilliance they share that common Slavonic flavor, an undefinable mixture of melancholy and passion, whether smouldering or blazing.
This set contains the famous concertos by Tchaikovsky, Rachmaninoff, Shostakovich and Prokofiev, but also lesser known composers: Anton Rubinstein, Medtner, Glazunov, Kabalevsky, Scriabin, Khatchaturian, Arensky, Balakirev, Lyapunov, Bortkiewicz and Khrennikov. Adding extra spice to the set are the concertos by Scharwenka and Moszkowski, Polish by birth but Slavic in spirit.
Excellent performances by Michael Ponti, Boris Giltburg, Yevgeny Kissin, Stefan Doniga and others.

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