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Schumann & The Sonata Vol 1 / Florian Uhlig

Schumann / Uhlig
Release Date: 07/27/2010 
Label:  Hänssler Classic   Catalog #: 98603   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Robert Schumann
Performer:  Florian Uhlig
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Pianist Florian Uhlig launches what he hopes to be a truly comprehensive Schumann piano music cycle, complete with divergent versions of the same works and alternate readings. Volume 1 offers the C major Fantasy in its commonly performed Urtext edition, plus the composer's Third piano sonata (aka the "Concerto without Orchestra") in its 1836 three-movement incarnation, followed by an appendix consisting of two previously unpublished fragments edited by Uhlig and Joachim Draheim, the rejected Scherzo I (Vivacissimo) plus two variations Schumann deleted from the central "Clara Wieck Variations" movement.

Uhlig may not bring out the music's fullest dynamic scope and volatile passion, yet his extraordinary
Read more contrapuntal acumen and ear for textural diversity often sheds new and fresh light on familiar patterns. He articulates the aforementioned Op. 14 variation movement theme's legato and detached distinctions to three-dimensional effect, and integrates the outer movements' sprawling tendencies through insidious tempo relationships and subtle dynamic shadings. Similarly, the Fantasy's swirling patterns and intricate hidden counterlines emerge in more active and purposeful light than in more generalized interpretations.

A vividly characterized dialogue emerges from the second-movement March's imitative passages between the right and left hands, which helps make the obsessive dotted rhythms seem less relentless and repetitious than is often the case. Surprisingly, Uhlig holds back in the coda's notorious skips, and he disappoints with a relatively matter-of-fact closing slow movement that would benefit from more lyrical breadth and tonal ripeness. The sonics are a bit bright and close-up, yet never strident. Small reservations aside, Uhlig's serious musicianship and strong individual profile command respect and admiration, and bode well for future volumes.

--Jed Distler
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Works on This Recording

1. Studies for Sonata for Piano no 3 in F minor, Op. 14 "Concert sans orchestre" by Robert Schumann
Performer:  Florian Uhlig (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
2. Studies for Sonata for Piano no 3 in F minor, Op. 14 "Concert sans orchestre" by Robert Schumann
Performer:  Florian Uhlig (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
3. Phantasie for Piano in C major, Op. 17 by Robert Schumann
Performer:  Florian Uhlig (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1836-1838; Germany 

Sound Samples

Piano Sonata No. 3 in F minor, Op. 14: I. Allegro
Piano Sonata No. 3 in F minor, Op. 14: II. Quasi variazioni: Andantino de Clara Wieck
Piano Sonata No. 3 in F minor, Op. 14: III. Prestissimo possibile
Romanze in F minor
Scherzo
2 Variations: Variation 1
2 Variations: Variation 2: Scherzo: Prestissimo
Fantasie in C major, Op. 17: I. Durchaus phantastisch und leidenschaftlich vorzutragen - Im Legendenton - Erstes tempo
Fantasie in C major, Op. 17: II. Massig
Fantasie in C major, Op. 17: III. Langsam getragen

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