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Sergio Fiorentino - The Early Recordings II - Liszt


Release Date: 01/25/2000 
Label:  Apr (Appian) Catalog #: 5582   Spars Code: ADD 
Composer:  Franz Liszt
Performer:  Sergio Fiorentino
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: n/a 
Length: 1 Hours 10 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Fiorentino’s easy command of Liszt’s many, many notes is matched by his ability to convey the composer’s overt theatricality with poise and panache. As a result, the Hungarian Rhapsodies come across as being more three-dimensional pieces than the virtuoso fluff for which they are wrongly dismissed.

APR has been devoting much effort on behalf of the late pianist Sergio Fiorentino’s recorded legacy, from live concerts taped in his final years to rare studio bounty, like this Liszt recital. With two exceptions, the master tapes for these recordings are lost, but producer Bryan Crimp had access to a reasonably clean copy of the original Concert Artists LP.

Happily, Fiorentino’s easy command of Liszt’s many,
Read more many notes is matched by his ability to convey the composer’s overt theatricality with poise and panache. As a result, the Hungarian Rhapsodies come across as being more three-dimensional pieces than the virtuoso fluff for which they are wrongly dismissed. Ideally, we might want sharper contrasts and a more demonic undercurrent throughout the Octave Etude (No. 2 from Liszt Paganini Etudes) and Gnomenreignen. And the Grand Galop Chromatique’s giddy exhibitionism reaches more demented heights via Georges Cziffra’s interpretation. For these sessions, Fiorentino dusted off a Liszt rarity: the Grande Fantasie de bravoure sur la Clochette de Paganini. Imagine “La Campabella” with an extended introduction, and four times as much music that is 40 times more difficult to play, and you’ll get the picture. Fiorentino dives into this overwrought concocotion as if it were the greatest piano piece ever written, and wipes the floor with Leslie Howard’s dog-sober version on Hyperion. Less specialized buyers might be turned off by overall shallow sound plus piano notes that resonate with residual fuzz.

- Jed Distler, Classics Today
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Works on This Recording

1.
Concert Etudes (2) for Piano, S 145: no 2, Gnomenreigen by Franz Liszt
Performer:  Sergio Fiorentino (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: ?1862-63; Rome, Italy 
Date of Recording: 02/15/1966 
2.
Hungarian Rhapsodies (19) for Piano, S 244: no 2 in C sharp minor by Franz Liszt
Performer:  Sergio Fiorentino (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1847; Hungary 
Date of Recording: 02/15/1966 
3.
Hungarian Rhapsodies (19) for Piano, S 244: no 6 in D flat major by Franz Liszt
Performer:  Sergio Fiorentino (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1846-1885; Weimar, Germany 
Date of Recording: 02/15/1966 
4.
Hungarian Rhapsodies (19) for Piano, S 244: no 7 in D minor by Franz Liszt
Performer:  Sergio Fiorentino (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1846-1885; Weimar, Germany 
Date of Recording: 02/15/1966 
5.
Hungarian Rhapsodies (19) for Piano, S 244: no 10 in E major by Franz Liszt
Performer:  Sergio Fiorentino (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1847; Paris, France 
Date of Recording: 02/15/1966 
6.
Hungarian Rhapsodies (19) for Piano, S 244: no 11 in A minor by Franz Liszt
Performer:  Sergio Fiorentino (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1846-1847; Weimar, Germany 
Date of Recording: 02/15/1966 
7.
Hungarian Rhapsodies (19) for Piano, S 244: no 13 in A minor by Franz Liszt
Performer:  Sergio Fiorentino (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1846-1885; Weimar, Germany 
Date of Recording: 02/15/1966 
8.
Grand galop chromatique for Piano, S 219 by Franz Liszt
Performer:  Sergio Fiorentino (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1838; Switzerland 
Date of Recording: 09/1962 
9.
Grand Bravura Fantasia on Paganini's "La Campanella", S 420 by Franz Liszt
Performer:  Sergio Fiorentino (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1831-1832; Paris, France 
Date of Recording: 09/1962 
10.
Transcendental Etudes (6) after Paganini, S 140: no 2 in E flat major "Octave" by Franz Liszt
Performer:  Sergio Fiorentino (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1838; Switzerland 
Date of Recording: 02/15/1966 

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