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Chopin: 4 Ballades, 4 Scherzi / Vladimir Ashkenazy


Release Date: 04/11/2000 
Label:  London/Decca Legends Catalog #: 466499   Spars Code: ADD 
Composer:  Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 18 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

These recordings show Ashkenazy at the height of his powers as a pianist. In the four Scherzos he takes Chopin’s ‘presto’ markings at face value, and the virtuosity of his vertiginous performances is dazzling. The Ballades, by way of contrast, are lingering accounts: beautiful playing, in all conscience, though there are times when one might have wished the music to flow just a little more naturally. The piano tone in these pieces is a little hard at times, but don’t let that worry you: this disc is an essential acquisition for anyone who loves Chopin – the more of a bargain in that it contains the essence of what was originally housed on two LPs. For an alternative view of the Ballades (and a particularly compelling view of the continual F Read more major/A minor vacillations of No. 3), Murray Perahia’s beautifully recorded 1994 version is warmly recommended.

Performance: 5 (out of 5), Sound: 3 (out of 5)

-- Misha Donat, BBC Music Magazine
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Works on This Recording

1.
Ballade for Piano no 1 in G minor, B 66/Op. 23 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1831-1835 
2.
Ballade for Piano no 2 in F major/a minor, B 102/Op. 38 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1836-1839; Paris, France 
3.
Ballade for Piano no 3 in A flat major, B 136/Op. 47 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1840-1841; Paris, France 
4.
Ballade for Piano no 4 in F minor, B 146/Op. 52 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1842; Paris, France 
5.
Scherzo for Piano no 1 in B minor, B 65/Op. 20 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1831-1832; Poland 
6.
Scherzo for Piano no 2 in B flat minor/D flat major, B 111/Op. 31 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1837; Paris, France 
7.
Scherzo for Piano no 3 in C sharp minor, B 125/Op. 39 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1839; Mallorca (Majorca),  
8.
Scherzo for Piano no 4 in E major, B 148/Op. 54 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1842; Paris, France 
9.
Prelude for Piano in C sharp minor, B 141/Op. 45 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1841; Paris, France 

Sound Samples

Ballade No.1 in G minor, Op.23
Ballade No.2 in F, Op.38
Ballade No.3 in A flat, Op.47
Ballade No.4 in F minor, Op.52
Prélude No.25 in C sharp minor, Op.45
Scherzo No.1 in B minor, Op.20
Scherzo No.2 in B flat minor, Op.31
Scherzo No.3 in C sharp minor, Op.39
Scherzo No.4 in E, Op.54

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 A Sumptuous Performance February 6, 2013 By albert l. (san francisco, CA) See All My Reviews "Ashkenazy is at his best in the soft, barely audible segments. The notes are like feathers, swirling slowly in the air, coming to rest so lightly. These interpretations are masterful and are bound to become the gold standard by which others are measured." Report Abuse
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