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Beethoven: Piano Concertos Nos. 1-5 / Uchida, Rattle, Berlin Philharmonic


Release Date: 02/01/2019 
Label:  Berlin Philharmonic   Catalog #: 180241  
Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Mitsuko Uchida
Conductor:  Simon Rattle
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Number of Discs: 5 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

There is hardly a better way to approach Ludwig van Beethoven than through his piano concertos. Beethoven’s own instrument was the piano, and in his improvisations – which made him the darling of the Viennese salons – he merged virtuosity and unbridled expression. The piano concertos give a clear idea of these performances. At the same time, they are prime examples of Beethoven’s ability to create large orchestral works with seemingly endless arcs of tension. The complete recording of all five works with Mitsuko Uchida and Sir Simon Rattle was one of the most spectacular projects of the Berliner Philharmoniker during the Rattle era – and at the same time the highlight of the collaboration between the orchestra and the pianist, which began Read more in 1984. The performances were given a rapturous reception in the auditorium and in the press – as one critic wrote, the audience was overwhelmed by a “collective sense of happiness”. With vibrant freshness, the performances brought the whole combative energy of these works to life. At the same time, they revealed Beethoven’s incomparable spirituality, which – according to Mitsuko Uchida – “allows us to see to the end of the universe”. Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Concerto for Piano no 5 in E flat major, Op. 73 "Emperor" by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Mitsuko Uchida (Piano)
Conductor:  Simon Rattle
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1809; Vienna, Austria 
2.
Concerto for Piano no 4 in G major, Op. 58 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Mitsuko Uchida (Piano)
Conductor:  Simon Rattle
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1806; Vienna, Austria 
3.
Concerto for Piano no 3 in C minor, Op. 37 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Mitsuko Uchida (Piano)
Conductor:  Simon Rattle
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1800; Vienna, Austria 
4.
Concerto for Piano no 2 in B flat major, Op. 19 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Mitsuko Uchida (Piano)
Conductor:  Simon Rattle
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1793/1798; Vienna, Austria 
5.
Concerto for Piano no 1 in C major, Op. 15 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Mitsuko Uchida (Piano)
Conductor:  Simon Rattle
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Classical 
Written: 1795; Vienna, Austria 

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 Second Time Around February 13, 2019 By Christopher  Abbot (Chilmark, MA) See All My Reviews "Twenty years ago Sir Simon recorded a set of the piano concertos with the Vienna Philharmonic and the great Alfred Brendel as soloist for EMI (now Warner Classics). Brendel was always my choice for soloist in these pieces, so I was very satisfied with that set. Now we have a chance to hear Sir Simon's later thoughts on these wonderful works with a splendid new partner. One of my only caveats about the earlier cycle was the sound production--the VPO sometimes seemed underwhelming, particularly in the 'Emperor', which needs a heroic sound as well as a majestic interpretation. We get that here. The Berlin Philharmonic has this music in its collective blood, and Mitsuko Uchida plays Beethoven as to the manor born. Rattle follows the same plan as in his later set of the Beethoven symphonies from this source: the orchestra begins in an almost chamber-size capacity and grows as the later pieces demand more weight. And as always with these deluxe sets from the BPO, there are multiple formats from which to audition (and view) the pieces. It is wonderful indeed to watch these consummate musicians produce such spirited and thoughtful performances, especially in sound as full-bodied and spacious as this. Another winner from the BPO, and a reminder of just how matchless a team Sir Simon and the BPO were." Report Abuse
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