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Philips 50 - Beethoven: Piano Concertos 4 & 5 / Arrau


Release Date: 03/13/2001 
Label:  Philips   Catalog #: 464681   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Claudio Arrau
Conductor:  Sir Colin Davis
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Dresden Staatskapelle
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 18 Mins. 

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This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.

Notes and Editorial Reviews



Unforgettably grand -- words can't do justice to the slow movement of the Fourth, nor can they capture the finale's wonderful sense of vigor within repose.

Certainly one of the more intelligent releases so far in the "Philips 50", this single disc combines the contents of two earlier single CDs, and most importantly offers the Fourth Piano Concerto without that annoying disc change you have to deal with in the complete set of five. Claudio Arrau's earlier versions of this coupling for the same label, with Haitink conducting, are available on Eloquence. However, not only is Davis more in sympathy with Arrau's majestic approach, he's got the incomparable
Read more Staatskapelle Dresden backing him up (not that the Concertgebouw in the earlier version is bad, but Haitink's no thrill). The result is a Fourth Concerto for the ages: just listen to Arrau's silky-toned opening, the soft hush of the violin section's entrance leading up to the thrilling subsequent crescendo. And the slow movement! Words can't do it justice, nor can they capture the finale's wonderful sense of vigor within repose.


Arrau's "Emperor" reveals more angst in the first movement development than most other performances, giving the whole work an added depth of feeling. Some listeners may prefer greater general liveliness, especially in the finale, but I find the approach wholly convincing in scale and so beautifully executed as to silence criticism. Technically speaking, these performances always sounded marvelous, and they still do. Unforgettably grand. [3/6/2001]
--David Hurwitz, ClassicsToday.com Read less

Works on This Recording

1. Concerto for Piano no 4 in G major, Op. 58 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Claudio Arrau (Piano)
Conductor:  Sir Colin Davis
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Dresden Staatskapelle
Period: Classical 
Written: 1806; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 11/1984 
Venue:  Lukas Church, Dresden, Germany 
Length: 37 Minutes 39 Secs. 
2. Concerto for Piano no 5 in E flat major, Op. 73 "Emperor" by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Claudio Arrau (Piano)
Conductor:  Sir Colin Davis
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Dresden Staatskapelle
Period: Classical 
Written: 1809; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 11/1984 
Venue:  Lukas Church, Dresden, Germany 
Length: 40 Minutes 35 Secs. 

Sound Samples

Piano Concerto No.4 in G, Op.58: 1. Allegro moderato
Piano Concerto No.4 in G, Op.58: 2. Andante con moto
Piano Concerto No.4 in G, Op.58: 3. Rondo (Vivace)
Piano Concerto No.5 in E flat major Op.73 -"Emperor": 1. Allegro
Piano Concerto No.5 in E flat major Op.73 -"Emperor": 2. Adagio un poco mosso
Piano Concerto No.5 in E flat major Op.73 -"Emperor": 3. Rondo (Allegro)

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