Notes and Editorial Reviews
"Although there are some formidable pianists represented in the catalogue in this repertoire, it’s pretty fair to say that Alicia de Larrocha has reigned supreme in these works for nearly half a century. Indeed, she has recorded the main works, Goyescas and Iberia at least three times, and they have been a mainstay of her concert life from a very early age.
In Los requiebros, the opening piece in Goyescas, de Larrocha displays her flair for the dance-oriented rhythms that underpin so much of this music. But what sets her playing apart from the crowd is the ease and complete naturalness of her rubato, those little pulls and pushes of the rhythmic undercurrent that sound so easy and spontaneous. It’s no surprise to read in
confirmed de Larrocha fan Bryce Morrison’s enthusiastic liner-note, that one of her early idols was Artur Rubinstein, particularly his Chopin. Some of that same conversation-like flexibility of tempo and rubato is evident here. Her pedalling is also very special, so that even the stormiest passages and thorniest textures are never muddied. The bell-like passage in the coda of Goyescas’s longest, darkest piece El amor y la muerte (Love and death) is exquisitely handled, the sheer intensity of the playing almost unbearable. The sense of relief that follows in the lighter El Pelele, another Rubinstein encore favourite, is almost palpable, Larrocha revelling in the musical imagery of the straw man being tossed in the blanket."
-- Tony Haywood, MusicWebInternational
Works on This Recording
Valses poeticos by Enrique Granados
Alicia de Larrocha (Piano)
Written: 1887; Spain
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