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The Transcendental Tradition / Ronald Stevenson


Release Date: 01/10/2006 
Label:  Apr (Appian) Catalog #: 5630   Spars Code: ADD 
Composer:  Franz LisztLeopold GodowskyChristoph W. GluckPercy Aldridge Grainger,   ... 
Performer:  Ronald Stevenson
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 16 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Ronald Stevenson has been a unique presence in the musical world for the last fifty years. He is both virtuoso pianist and composer and thus is that almost extinct species, once so dominant in the era of Romanticism - the pianist/composer. As a composer he has ploughed his own furrow through the post-war decades of Modernism, writing in a style which remains tonal without being reactionary. To some extent his language could be seen as taking up where Busoni left off, and indeed this composer is one of Stevenson's greatest interests, though his frequent use of folksong points also to his interest in Grainger. His most famous work is his 80' Passacaglia on DSCH, one of the greatest piano compositions of the latter half of the 20th century. Read more />
This programme, issued on disc for the first time, was originally a lecture recital given in Vancouver and recorded by CBC in 1976. The works chosen are typically wide ranging, the common theme being that they are all transcriptions. They give us ample opportunity to hear that not only has Stevenson a virtuoso technique, but that he is also one of music's great communicators; colour and the singing line being always paramount. Undoubtedly the career of Stevenson the pianist has been limited by his own desire to work as a composer, evidently the life of a travelling virtuoso was not for him, but there can be no doubt that had he so wished he could have become a major figure on the concert stage. Those who have heard him can only hope that the many recitals he recorded for the BBC in the 1960’s & 70’s, they include almost complete cycles of Busoni and Szymanowski, might one day also see the light of day.

- Appian Recordings
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Works on This Recording

1.
Du bist die Ruh' (Schubert) for Piano, S 558 no 3 by Franz Liszt
Performer:  Ronald Stevenson (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1837-1838; France 
Date of Recording: 04/21/1976 
Venue:  Live  University of Victoria, British Columbia 
2.
Studies (53) on Chopin Etudes: no 18 in F minor (after Op. 10 no 9) by Leopold Godowsky
Performer:  Ronald Stevenson (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1894-1914; Berlin, Germany 
Date of Recording: 04/21/1976 
Venue:  Live  University of Victoria, British Columbia 
3.
Orfeo ed Euridice: Dance of the Furies by Christoph W. Gluck
Performer:  Ronald Stevenson (Piano)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1762/1774; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 04/21/1976 
Venue:  Live  University of Victoria, British Columbia 
Notes: Arranger: Charles Valentin Alkan. 
4.
Ramble on R Strauss's love duet from "Der Rosenkavalier" by Percy Aldridge Grainger
Performer:  Ronald Stevenson (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: USA 
Date of Recording: 04/21/1976 
Venue:  Live  University of Victoria, British Columbia 
5.
Goldwyn Follies: Love walked in by George Gershwin
Performer:  Ronald Stevenson (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1937; USA 
Date of Recording: 04/21/1976 
Venue:  Live  University of Victoria, British Columbia 
Notes: Arranger: Percy Aldridge Grainger. 
6.
Fantasy on Britten's "Peter Grimes" by Ronald Stevenson
Performer:  Ronald Stevenson (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: Scotland 
Date of Recording: 04/21/1976 
Venue:  Live  University of Victoria, British Columbia 
7.
Partita for Violin solo no 2 in D minor, BWV 1004: 5th movement, Chaconne by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Ronald Stevenson (Piano)
Period: Baroque 
Written: circa 1720; Cöthen, Germany 
Date of Recording: 04/21/1976 
Venue:  Live  University of Victoria, British Columbia 
Notes: Arranger: Ferruccio Busoni. 
8.
Prelude, Fugue and Fantasy on Themes from Busoni's "Faust" by Ronald Stevenson
Performer:  Ronald Stevenson (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1949-1959; Scotland 
Date of Recording: 04/21/1976 
Venue:  Live  University of Victoria, British Columbia 

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