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Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No 3; Et Al / Lang Lang


Release Date: 02/26/2002 
Label:  Telarc   Catalog #: 60582   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Sergei RachmaninovTraditionalAlexander Scriabin
Performer:  Lang Lang
Conductor:  Yuri Temirkanov
Orchestra/Ensemble:  St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 12 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

The Rachmaninov Third Piano Concerto has become the archetype virtuoso showpiece pianists use to dazzle us with their technical prowess. Lang Lang however, offers a prowess of a different sort in this beautifully sculpted and supremely musical interpretation. Lang's primary concern is the work's overall structure, with his focus trained on the music's larger plan. Individual moments do not matter so much as the overall dramatic scheme. So, where we've come to expect a cascading rush at the close of the first movement's lyrical second subject, Lang instead floats down the keyboard on gossamer wings, rounding out the phrase beautifully. Likewise Lang's smoothly flowing phrasing in Rachmaninov's reputedly overwrought longer version of the Read more great cadenza makes it sound as fleet and immaculately balanced as the shorter revision.


That's not to say that Lang's playing is unspectacular, for his technique is stunning, primarily because he takes great pains to elucidate Rachmaninov's multi-layered motivic material. Of course, some of this exceptional clarity is due to the piano-dominant recording, which makes some passages sound like the composer's solo works (particularly the Preludes). Also, because of this Yuri Temirkanov's energized performance with the St. Petersburg Philharmonic gets short-changed, as it's barely audible a good deal of the time (but then, this applies to most recordings of the Rachmaninov Third). Lang's precision fingerwork comes to the fore in the challenging finale, where he's certainly not the fastest (Martha Argerich is a prime contender for that title)--but his is one of the most rhythmically acute and melodically aware performances I've heard in some time. The tremendous applause at the end of this live performance only serves to reinforce my view that this piece works best in concert.


As an encore, Lang chooses Liu Yang River, a charming Chinese folk tune based on the pentatonic scale. Lang's studio-recorded selection of Scriabin's Etudes finds him displaying more emotional volatility, although nothing like the passionate fervor of Ruth Laredo in this music. Still, it makes for a novel conclusion to an enjoyable disc, one that stands out in a very crowded field. [5/10/2002]
--Victor Carr Jr, ClassicsToday.com Read less

Works on This Recording

1. Concerto for Piano no 3 in D minor, Op. 30 by Sergei Rachmaninov
Performer:  Lang Lang (Piano)
Conductor:  Yuri Temirkanov
Orchestra/Ensemble:  St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1909; Russia 
Date of Recording: 08/22/2001 
Venue:  Live  Royal Albert Hall, London, England 
Length: 43 Minutes 33 Secs. 
2. Liu Yang River by Traditional
Performer:  Lang Lang (Piano)
Written: China 
Date of Recording: 08/22/2001 
Venue:  Live  Royal Albert Hall, London, England 
Length: 3 Minutes 38 Secs. 
3. Pieces (3) for Piano, Op. 2: no 1, Etude in C sharp minor by Alexander Scriabin
Performer:  Lang Lang (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1887-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 10/20/2001 
Venue:  Warner Hall, Oberlin College, Ohio 
Length: 2 Minutes 46 Secs. 
4. Etudes (12) for Piano, Op. 8: no 2 in F sharp minor by Alexander Scriabin
Performer:  Lang Lang (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1894; Russia 
Date of Recording: 10/20/2001 
Venue:  Warner Hall, Oberlin College, Ohio 
Length: 1 Minutes 42 Secs. 
5. Etudes (12) for Piano, Op. 8: no 3 in B minor by Alexander Scriabin
Performer:  Lang Lang (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1894; Russia 
Date of Recording: 10/20/2001 
Venue:  Warner Hall, Oberlin College, Ohio 
Length: 1 Minutes 50 Secs. 
6. Etudes (12) for Piano, Op. 8: no 8 in A flat major by Alexander Scriabin
Performer:  Lang Lang (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1894; Russia 
Date of Recording: 10/20/2001 
Venue:  Warner Hall, Oberlin College, Ohio 
Length: 3 Minutes 48 Secs. 
7. Etudes (12) for Piano, Op. 8: no 10 in D flat major by Alexander Scriabin
Performer:  Lang Lang (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1894; Russia 
Date of Recording: 10/20/2001 
Venue:  Warner Hall, Oberlin College, Ohio 
Length: 1 Minutes 52 Secs. 
8. Etudes (12) for Piano, Op. 8: no 11 in B flat minor by Alexander Scriabin
Performer:  Lang Lang (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1894; Russia 
Date of Recording: 10/20/2001 
Venue:  Warner Hall, Oberlin College, Ohio 
Length: 4 Minutes 6 Secs. 
9. Etudes (12) for Piano, Op. 8: no 12 in D sharp minor by Alexander Scriabin
Performer:  Lang Lang (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1894; Russia 
Date of Recording: 10/20/2001 
Venue:  Warner Hall, Oberlin College, Ohio 
Length: 2 Minutes 26 Secs. 
10. Etudes (8) for Piano, Op. 42: no 4 in F sharp major by Alexander Scriabin
Performer:  Lang Lang (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1903; Russia 
Date of Recording: 10/20/2001 
Venue:  Warner Hall, Oberlin College, Ohio 
Length: 2 Minutes 43 Secs. 
11. Etudes (8) for Piano, Op. 42: no 3 in F sharp minor "La moustique" by Alexander Scriabin
Performer:  Lang Lang (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1903; Russia 
Date of Recording: 10/20/2001 
Venue:  Warner Hall, Oberlin College, Ohio 
Length: 0 Minutes 50 Secs. 
12. Etudes (3) for Piano, Op. 65: no 3, Molto Vivace by Alexander Scriabin
Performer:  Lang Lang (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1912; Russia 
Date of Recording: 10/20/2001 
Venue:  Warner Hall, Oberlin College, Ohio 
Length: 1 Minutes 54 Secs. 

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