This CD presents Beethoven's immortal Appassionata sonata in three separate performances on different instruments, all played by virtuoso keyboardist, Lambert Orkis. Beethoven himself regarded the f minor sonata to be his finest sonata at the time that he wrote it (1805), and Carl Czerny, a student of Beethoven's points out that whatever considerable powers a pianist needed for Beethoven's sonatas prior to this composition, this work required the doubling of those abilities. When Beethoven composed the Appassionata, a consensus regarding how a piano should sound had not been achieved. Indeed, the instrument was in the throes of a rapid evolutionary development. The three instruments used in this recording are based uponRead more Viennese piano building designs and represent three snapshots in time of Viennese piano evolution, Fortepiano by Thomas and Barbara Wolf, after a Nannette Streicher (ca. 1814-1820),Bosendorfer Imperial Concert Grand, Fortepiano by R.J. Regier, after Viennese instruments ca. 1830. Lambert Orkis has received international recognition as chamber musician, interpreter of contemporary music, and performer on period instruments. He has appeared world-wide in recital with violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter since 1988 and with cellist Mstislav Rostropovich since 1983. A multi-Grammy Award nominee, his large discography comprises works of the Classical, Romantic and Modern eras. Mr. Orkis can be heard on the following Bridge CDs: George Crumb: A Little Suite for Christmas; Richard Wernick: Sonata Reflections of a Dark Light (BRIDGE 9003); Richard Wernick: Piano Concerto (BRIDGE 9082); Richard Wernick: Piano Sonata No. 2; James Primosch: Sonata-Fantasia (BRIDGE 9131). Read less
A passion for the AppassionataMarch 10, 2015By K. Baker (Fairfax, VA)See All My Reviews"This is a fascinating study for the transition from the older fortepianos to the modern grand piano. The CD contains three performances of Beethoven's Appassionata sonata (Op. 57) played on three different instruments. The three pianos are (1) a fortepiano by Thomas and Barbara Wolf based on the designed of Nannette Streicher (ca. 1814-1820), (2) a fortepiano by R.J. Regier based on Viennese instruments from around the 1830s and a modern Boesendorfer Imperial Concert Grand. Lambert Orkis is not someone who would immediately come to mind (at least for me) as an interpreter of the Appassionata. The notes talk about the emotional tension in the work but Orkis never quite achieves the tension that I find (and love) with my favorite recordings of this sonata (e.g. Horowitz or Gilels). So if you are looking for your first recording of the Appassionata you should probably look for a different recording. The real interest in the recording comes from the different sounds of the three instruments. Oddly enough, my least favorite of the three was the modern Boesendorfer. To me the emotional tension really got lost on it. The sound is simply too lush. It's a glorious sound for works from the romantic era but Beethoven's sonata gets lost in the plush, plummy sound. Of the two fortepiano performances I would rate the performance on the Regier as the better of the two. The sound has more bite and tension than what was available from the earlier model. In summary, this is not the recording to get if you are looking for a definitive performance of the Appassionata Sonata, but if you are interested in the sounds of early instruments and how they compare to modern instruments the recording is well worth having."Report Abuse
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