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Wagner: Piano Transcriptions / Zoltán Kocsis

Release Date: 12/10/2007 
Label:  Philips   Catalog #: 416457   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Franz LisztRichard Wagner
Performer:  Zoltán Kocsis
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 0 Hours 45 Mins. 

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This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.

Notes and Editorial Reviews

Kocsis's performance is excellent, with enviable control of the tremolos as well as the rapid ebb and flow of the music's emotions.

Kocsis adds some Wagner transcriptions of his own to those of Liszt. These are quite good, yet the undertaking seems gratuitous in view of the many Liszt transcriptions, including those of Wagner, that remain unrecorded. His sleeve-note makes it clear, however, that he has no very high opinion of some of Liszt's works in this field. I disagree, and find "Elsas Brautzug" highly effective, in fact amazingly so considering how essentially orchestral a composer Wagner obviously is. Indeed, to have been able to portray the torrential passions of the "Liebestod' from Tristan with
Read more only two hands seems incredible even when one knows the piece in Liszt's version thoroughly. What Kocsis has done here is to add his own transcription of the Tristan Prelude to Liszt's of the "Liebestod", joining them with the octave passage heard on cellos and basses when these two extracts are performed together at concerts.

Except at the climax, where he calls on his virtuoso technique, the result Kocsis obtains is not so very different from what one finds in the piano reduction of the vocal score. He graduates the ascent to the Prelude's climax beautifully, however, while still leaving something in reserve for the climax of the "Liebestod". In the latter Kocsis demonstrates enviable control of the demisemiquaver tremolos and responds well to the rapid ebb and flow of the music's emotions. There is perhaps most point to his transcription of the Meistersinger Overture, and he has done a telling job here. It pales beside the "Feierlicher Marsch" from Parsifal, though, for this grim, sombre piece has always seemed to me one of the most notable of Liszt's Wagner transcriptions. Kocsis's performance is excellent. The digital recording is at once lifelike and unobtrusive.

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Works on This Recording

Isolde's "Liebestod" from Wagner's "Tristan", S 447 by Franz Liszt
Performer:  Zoltán Kocsis (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1867; Weimar, Germany 
Tristan und Isolde: Act 1 Prelude by Richard Wagner
Performer:  Zoltán Kocsis (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1858; Germany 
Notes: Transcribed: Zoltán Kocsis 
Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg: Act 1 Prelude by Richard Wagner
Performer:  Zoltán Kocsis (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1867; Germany 
Notes: Transcribed: Zoltán Kocsis 
March to the Grail from Wagner's "Parsifal", S 450 by Franz Liszt
Performer:  Zoltán Kocsis (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1882; Weimar, Germany 
Lohengrin: Excerpt(s) by Richard Wagner
Performer:  Zoltán Kocsis (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1847; Germany 
Notes: Transcribed: Franz Liszt 

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