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Foerster: Dreams, Memories & Impressions - Complete Solo Piano Music / Goodson

Foerster / Goodson,Patricia
Release Date: 01/28/2014 
Label:  Brilliant Classics   Catalog #: 9283   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
In Stock: Usually ships in 24 hours.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews

Pianist Patricia Goodson has made a systematic study of Josef Bohuslav Foerster’s piano music, and presents it complete for the first time on this inexpensive and very well-recorded four-CD set. Throughout his long life (1859-1951) Foerster wrote a great deal of music. The latest numbered work here, the Two Pieces for the Left Hand, is his opus 142, but he’s best known for his opera Eva, the Fourth Symphony, the tone poem Cyrano de Bergerac, and most of all for being a FOM (Friend of Mahler).

Although Czech, Foerster’s music belongs squarely within the German school; he’s more like Fibich than Dvorák, and his piano works advance from the style of Schumann and Brahms to that of Richard Strauss. There is only one big
Read more work here, the theme and variations entitled The Masks of Eros. The music is quite inventive, but there’s nothing erotic about it if by that we mean “sexy.” Foerster was one of those sincere, religious guys whose artistic and aesthetic makeup was morally upright and decidedly non-sensual, although this of course doesn’t mean that his music is inexpressive any more than it does with Dvorák.

All the rest of these works are short, lyrical pieces often grouped into suites either with evocative titles, “Evening Music,” “Charcoal Sketches,” “Dreaming,” “Roses of Remembrance,” or else named after places, as in the “Osenice” and “Jicín” Suites. The Allegro impetuoso third movement of the former work gives you a good idea of what to expect. After living with this set for a while, the overall impression of the music is very pleasant, but not terribly memorable. Foerster was not a tunesmith, and his chromatic, Straussian later style tends to slide in one ear and out the other. That said, his feeling for harmony was quite personal and he doesn’t sound precisely like anyone else.

Patricia Goodson clearly cares about this music. She took her time recording it–three years–and her thoughtfulness and consideration definitely show in her natural feeling for pace and phrasing, and in her attention to nuance. I am sure that she would be the last person to suggest that you listen to big gobs of this stuff all at once, but taken in measured doses the music does make a distinctive, if somewhat elusive, impression. This set will be welcomed by collectors of late romantic music, and it certainly illuminates the work of this still somewhat mysterious character.

-- David Hurwitz, ClassicsToday.com
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Works on This Recording

1.
Dreaming, Op. 47 by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1898; Bohemia 
2.
Roses of Remembrance, Op. 49 by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
3.
Evening Music, Op. 79 by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
4.
Charcoal Sketches, Op. 136 by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
5.
Impressions, Op. 73 by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
6.
The Masks of Eros, Op. 98 by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
7.
Osenice Suite, Op. 129 by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
8.
Jicín Suite, Op. 124 by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
9.
And the Apple Trees Blossomed, op. 52 by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
10.
The Day, Op. 153b by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
11.
Miniatures for Piano, Op. 17 by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
12.
Pages from My Diary, Op. 18b by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
13.
Greetings to President T. G. Masaryk on his 80th birthday by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
14.
Pieces (2) for Piano left hand, Op. 142 by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
15.
Esquisses de danse, Op. 48 by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
16.
Music for My Young Son, Op. 72 by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
17.
Memories of Youth by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
18.
Petites esquisses by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
19.
Moment musicale by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
20.
Allegretto capriccioso by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
21.
Spring Moods, Op. 4 by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
22.
Allegro and Scherzo, Op. 5 by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
23.
March for the National Youth Front by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
24.
Wiegenlied by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)
25.
Zuckerpuppe tanzt by Josef Bohuslav Foerster
Performer:  Patricia Goodson (Piano)

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