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Artur Rubinstein in Concert

Rubinstein,Arthur / Cbo / Haitink
Release Date: 06/10/2008 
Label:  Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog #: 001121809  
Composer:  Ludwig van BeethovenJohannes BrahmsFranz SchubertFrédéric Chopin
Performer:  Artur Rubinstein
Conductor:  Bernard Haitink
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Low Stock: Currently 3 or fewer in stock. Usually ships in 24 hours, unless stock becomes depleted.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews

Picture Format: 4:3
A production of UNITEL, Munich

* Artur Rubinstein´s great performance from 1973 from Amsterdam of the well known piano concertos by Beethoven and Brahms accompanied by the Concertgebouw Orchestra under Bernard Haitink.
* splendid bonus: “Rubinstein at 90”: Robert MacNeil’s revealing interview with Rubinstein at his Paris home.

R E V I E W S:

“Rubinstein’s superb form is matched by the incredible musical sensitivity of Haitink and the orchestra.” -- New York Times

“Sounds and images are expertly cued to the split second…Rubinstein’s face, body and hands are captured in a
Read more smooth flow of shots and reflections…The Beethoven takes on an almost Mozartean delicacy, the Brahms is infused with the all the power it requires.” -- New York Times “[To] Rubinstein’s still magnificently full and supple tone…Haitink provides suitably warm, expansive orchestral support.” -- Washington Post

“Captures the work’s essence.” -- Süddeutsche Zeitung

At 86, Arthur Rubinstein (the pianist always spelled his first name with an "h" in America) still played beautifully, as his 1973 Concertgebouw performances of the Beethoven C minor and Brahms D minor concertos prove. To observe his calm presence and absolutely centered body language constitutes a master-class from which today's keyboard emoters can learn (Olli Mustonen and Lang Lang, take note!).

In the Beethoven first movement Rubinstein's solo turns usually relax Bernard Haitink's faster basic tempos, yet the natural ebb and flow of the pianist's phrasing and his seamless transitions prevent any sense of discontinuity. His ravishing tone and proportioned lyricism come into their own in a brisker than usual yet never hurried slow movement. The Rondo's point and panache belies Rubinstein's advanced years and also inspires particularly incisive podium support from Haitink, looking slim and energized in his mid-40s, sporting those inevitable 1970s sideburns.

Rocky drama and mellow poetry easily coexist in the Brahms concerto's first movement. How exciting it is to watch Rubinstein's huge hands embrace the taxing octaves with hardly any effort, even when he rises from his seat to reinforce a climax! The slow movement is appropriately inward and meditative without losing shape and flow, while the Rondo is full of rhythmic character, singing spirit, and genuine pianist/conductor repartee.

Among the solo selections, the Brahms pieces best back up Gregor Piatigorsky's claim that Rubinstein "had the best cello tone." The Chopin Scherzo's few stumbles don't matter in light of the pianist's perceptions, such as the care he takes to articulate the opening motive's triplets that many pianists merely brush off. Lastly, an insightful bonus interview with Robert MacNeil, "Rubinstein at 90", upholds the pianist's offstage reputation as a charmer and raconteur. For artistic quality, this is the most compelling visual document of Rubinstein's final performing years.

--Jed Distler, ClassicsToday.com
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Works on This Recording

Concerto for Piano no 3 in C minor, Op. 37 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Artur Rubinstein (Piano)
Conductor:  Bernard Haitink
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1800; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 08/1973 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Concerto for Piano no 1 in D minor, Op. 15 by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Artur Rubinstein (Piano)
Conductor:  Bernard Haitink
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1854-1858; Germany 
Date of Recording: 08/1973 
Venue:  Concertgebouw, Amsterdam 
Impromptus (4) for Piano, D 899/Op. 90: no 4 in A flat major by Franz Schubert
Performer:  Artur Rubinstein (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1827; Vienna, Austria 
Pieces (8) for Piano, Op. 76: no 2, Capriccio in B minor by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Artur Rubinstein (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1878; Austria 
Intermezzi (3) for Piano, Op. 117: no 2 in B flat minor by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Artur Rubinstein (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1892; Austria 
Scherzo for Piano no 2 in B flat minor/D flat major, B 111/Op. 31 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Artur Rubinstein (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1837; Paris, France 

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