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Tchaikovsky, Rachmaninov: Piano Trios / Lang Lang, Repin, Maisky

Release Date: 10/20/2009 
Label:  Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog #: 001350402   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Sergei RachmaninovPeter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Vadim RepinLang LangMischa Maisky
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

These three star musicians bring brilliance, bravura, and highly persuasive playing to the Tchaikovsky Piano Trio. It's also highly individualized, as you can often sense the distinct personalities of Lang Lang, Vadim Repin, and Mischa Maisky. This is exciting for fans of the artists, but it can distract from the work itself. Maybe this is why this performance has less of a sense of cohesiveness than the Beaux Arts Trio's less "exciting" rendition. Of course, there's excitement aplenty in the Naxos recording featuring Vova Ashkenazy, Christine Jackson, and Richard Stamper, who don't operate under a single ensemble name but play as if of one mind, providing one of the most compelling renditions on disc.

Still, Lang
Read more Lang, Repin, and Maisky offer consummate musicianship and requisite emotion, particularly in the first movement (even if they hold back that last ounce of intensity). The players really shine in the variations and finale, music that provides many opportunities for virtuoso display while demanding less heart-felt expression.

Lang Lang, Repin, and Maisky have their minds and hearts perfectly aligned in Rachmaninov's Élégiaque Trio No. 1, conveying Rachmaninov's sadness at the the death of Tchaikovsky without swooning. The Rachmaninov makes an excellent foil for the Tchaikovsky, as it is of similar mood, modality, and even melody (Rachmaninov's four-note theme clearly was modeled after Tchaikovsky's). DG's up-close, bright recording offers considerable detail but is somewhat lacking in perspective. Overall there's much to like on this disc, even if connoisseurs of the Tchaikovsky might want to investigate the listed alternatives.

--Victor Carr Jr, ClassicsToday.com
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Works on This Recording

Trio for Piano and Strings no 1 in G minor "Trio élégiaque" by Sergei Rachmaninov
Performer:  Vadim Repin (Violin), Lang Lang (Piano), Mischa Maisky (Cello)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1892; Russia 
Trio for Piano and Strings in A minor, Op. 50 by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Vadim Repin (Violin), Lang Lang (Piano), Mischa Maisky (Cello)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1881-1882; Russia 

Featured Sound Samples

Piano Trio (Tchaikovsky): I. Pezzo elegiaco

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