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Ravel: Gaspard De La Nuit, Etc / Vladimir Ashkenazy

Release Date: 12/18/2008 
Label:  Decca   Catalog #: 410255   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Maurice Ravel
Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 0 Hours 42 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Remembering his first recording of Gaspard de la nuit (Decca SXL6215, 1/66), a new Ravel programme by Ashkenazy is an event. Of his rivals in this particular work, Pogorelich (on DG) is the more immaculate technically, and he begins with a most individual reading of ''Ondine'', noticeably cooler than Ashkenazy's new interpretation. On Nimbus, Perlemuter is considerably more direct and literal, by no means attending to all of the composer's p and pp marks; and Ashkenazy's opening left-hand melody, for example, has more shape and expression. Pogorelich is the most still and remote in ''Le gibet'', displaying amazing control. Perlemuter again paints in fuller, if not more varied colours, and Ashkenazy achieves a balance between these divergent Read more approaches. In ''Scarbo'' it is noticeable that Pogorelich makes a real distinction between pp and ppp; there is sharp characterization of this movement's luxuriant detail, all his playing clearly having much thought behind it.

That he is so impressive in this scarifying piece says much for Perlemuter, but Ashkenazy, whose virtuosity is as extraordinary as Pogorelich's, is the most dramatic, and the most unified—not least because of the seemingly limitless, yet precisely directed, energy with which he performs this movement. There is not much to choose between Perlemuter and Ashkenazy in the Pavane, but the latter's Valses are, again, as fine a piece of Ravel-playing as I have heard: highly poetic, shaded by a remarkable diversity of nuances and with a sensitive regard for contrasts in tempo. The surface of this new Decca LP is extremely quiet, but in switching between the CD and LP versions of these various recordings one notices that the piano tone has greater lustre on the former.

-- Gramophone [6/1985]
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Works on This Recording

Gaspard de la nuit by Maurice Ravel
Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1908; France 
Date of Recording: 04/1982 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London 
Length: 21 Minutes 25 Secs. 
Pavane pour une infante défunte by Maurice Ravel
Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1899; France 
Date of Recording: 06/1983 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London 
Length: 6 Minutes 0 Secs. 
Valses nobles et sentimentales by Maurice Ravel
Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1911; France 
Date of Recording: 06/1983 
Venue:  Kingsway Hall, London 
Length: 14 Minutes 24 Secs. 

Featured Sound Samples

Gaspard de la nuit: I. Ondine

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