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Francesco Libetta In Lecce (2002)

Libetta / Beethoven / Delibes / Brahms / Chopin
Release Date: 01/28/2003 
Label:  Video Artists International   Catalog #: 4225  
Composer:  Ludwig van BeethovenLéo DelibesCécile Louise ChaminadeFranz Schubert,   ... 
Performer:  Francesco LibettaFrancesco G. Libetta
Number of Discs: 1 
In Stock: Usually ships in 24 hours.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews

Francesco Libetta, piano Live Recital, March 22, 2002, Paisiello Theatre Lecce, Italy Part 1 1. Opening Credits 2. Commentary - Giuseppe Pastore, musicologist Beethoven (17701827): Sonata No. 18 in E-flat, Op. 31, No. 3 3. I Allegro 4. II Scherzo Allegretto vivace 5. III Menuetto Moderato e grazioso 6. IV Presto con fuoco 7. Commentary - Fredy Franzutti, choreographer 8. Delibes (18361891): Passepied 9. Chaminade (1857-1944): Les Sylvains 10. Schubert (1797-1828): Ballet Music from Rosamunde (transcription by Godowsky) 1 Ravel (18751937): La Valse (transcription by the composer) 12. Commentary - Pasquale Romano, count Part 2 13. Chopin (1810-1849): Souvenir de Paganini 14. Chopin: Read more Tarantelle 15. Chopin: Mazurka in A minor (1841) 16. Commentary - Elvira Romano, teacher 17. Commentary - Anna Palmieri, bookseller Brahms (1833-1897): Variations on a Theme by Paganini in A minor, Op. 35 18. Book I 19. Book II Encores 20. Debussy (1862-1918): Claire de lune 21. Saint-Saëns (1835-1921): Le Cygne (The Swan) (transcription by Godowsky) 22. Chopin: Polonaise in A-flat, Op. 53 23. Closing Credits Of all virtuosi of the present day, Francesco Libetta is the most natural, and yet the most theatrical: conscious, always, of the degree to which every successful musician interprets a role—or even, in the course of a concert, several roles. Libetta is as subtle as Vladimir de Pachmann (whom he admires, and to whom, in performances of the so-called "Minute" and C-sharp minor waltzes of Chopin, he has paid homage); as technically adroit as Moriz Rosenthal; now audacious (his harmonic explorations of Mozart's concerto K. 467, in the third movement of which he once did a glissando); now earthy (Edouard Risler's transcription of Richard Strauss's Til Eulenspiegel, which he plays much as Clemens Kraus conducted it); now bardic. One thing he is not, however, is decadent. For example, if he is master of the world of Godowsky—a world of the most rarefied, almost hothouse type—it is precisely because he is not of it. In essence, Libetta is a plein-air pianist, which may be why he is one of the few musicians before the public today who has chosen not to make his home in a great capital, but rather among the rock and pine and sea and baroque of his native Lecce. This recording documents the pianist's one-hundredth recital. (His performances of the thirty-two Beethoven sonatas and his private concerts belong to a separate account.) The program is vintage Libetta—a sophisticated assembly of works that, one way or another, dance: Beethoven's sonata opus 31, number 3 (the second movement anticipates Delibes, the finale is a tarantella); a passepied of Delibes; Chaminade's Les Sylvains; the Schubert/Godowsky Rosamunde ballet music; Ravel's La Valse; Chopin's Souvenir de Paganini, Tarantelle, and the mazurka dedicated "à son ami Emile Gaillard"; and both books of Brahms's Paganini variations (based on the caprice that also inspired Liszt, Lutoslawski, and Rachmaninov, among others). What is most compelling about this program is the way in which Important Music (for instance, Beethoven) illumines and is illumined by music that is not usually thought to be Important (for instance, Delibes). Beethoven's sonata opus 31, no. 3, like its companions nos. 1 and 2, was written in 1802; a pivotal year in the composer's life. The year before, according to Carl Czerny, Beethoven had pronounced himself "only a little satisfied" with his works through opus 28 (the "Pastorale" sonata) and determined to set off on a "new path." Maynard Solomon nonetheless has rightly asked whether the opus 31 sonatas "opened an era or closed one." For instance, no. 3 has a scherzo and a minuet, but no "slow" movement—interesting, though hardly revolutionary. (It was not until after he had gone through the crisis he articulated in the "Heiligenstadt Testament," in October 1802, that Beethoven was really able to begin following a "new path.") This sonata has nonetheless been a favorite of virtuosi from Josef Hofmann to Artur Rubinstein, who played it in his last public recital (Wigmore Hall, London, 31 May 1976). Saint-Saëns, another committed Beethoven player, wrote a set of variations on the theme of the trio in the work's third movement. The next four works on the program declare Libetta's passion for the dance. The passepied of Delibes is one of the airs and dances he composed for Victor Hugo's stage play Le Roi s'amuse (the basis of Verdi's opera Rigoletto), while Chaminade's Les Sylvains fits into the French pastoral tradition exemplified by grander works such as Debussy's Afternoon of a Faun and Ravel's Daphnis and Chloe. Schubert composed his incidental music to Rosamunde: Princess of Cypress, a play by Helmina von Chézy, in 1823, and made use of some of the same material in both the string quartet opus 29 and the impromptu opus 142, no. 3. Godowsky, one of whose most astonishing responses to the work of another composer. Read less

Works on This Recording

1. Sonata for Piano no 18 in E flat major, Op. 31 no 3 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Francesco Libetta (Piano)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1802; Vienna, Austria 
2. Passepied by Léo Delibes
Performer:  Francesco G. Libetta (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: France 
3. The Fauns, Op. 60 by Cécile Louise Chaminade
Performer:  Francesco G. Libetta (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: by 1892; France 
4. Rosamunde, D 797/Op. 26: Ballet music by Franz Schubert
Performer:  Francesco G. Libetta (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1823; Vienna, Austria 
5. La valse by Maurice Ravel
Performer:  Francesco G. Libetta (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1920; France 
6. Variations for Piano in A major, B 37 "Souvenir de Paganini" by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Francesco G. Libetta (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1829; Poland 
7. Tarantella for Piano in A flat major, B 139/Op. 43 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Francesco Libetta (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1841; Paris, France 
8. Mazurka for Piano in A minor, B 134 "Notre temps" by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Francesco G. Libetta (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1840; Paris, France 
9. Variations (28) for Piano on a theme by Paganini, Op. 35 by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Francesco G. Libetta (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1862-1863; Austria 
10. Suite bergamasque: 3. Clair de lune by Claude Debussy
Performer:  Francesco G. Libetta (Piano)
Period: Modern 
Written: 1890; France 
11. Carnival of the animals: no 13, The swan by Camille Saint-Saëns
Performer:  Francesco G. Libetta (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1886; France 
12. Polonaise for Piano in A flat major, B 147/Op. 53 "Heroic" by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Francesco G. Libetta (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1842; Paris, France 

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