WGBH Radio WGBH Radio theclassicalstation.org

Solo Piano Works / Shura Cherkassky

Cherkassky,Shura
Release Date: 08/14/2012 
Label:  Nimbus   Catalog #: 17330   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Frédéric ChopinRobert SchumannJohannes BrahmsJosef Hofmann,   ... 
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Low Stock: Currently 3 or fewer in stock. Usually ships in 24 hours, unless stock becomes depleted.  
On sale! $33.98
CD:  $29.99
Low Stock



Notes and Editorial Reviews

"He might be termed the last of the great individualists among the pianist fraternity, an artist whose credo stems from his teacher, the great virtuoso Josef Hofmann. It is a school of personal quirk and technical brilliance that has seemed out of kilter with our era of po-faced accent on authenticity and perfect manners, all tending towards uniformity of execution... Nimbus is to be congratulated for taking charge of Cherkassky during the 1980s and offering him the company's Welsh headquarters to record in at will on his own time scale. As a result of long takes and pleasant surroundings in which Cherkassky thrives, this collection is truly representative of a player who hasn't always had his due." - Daily Telegraph, U.K. "He might be termed the last of the great individualists among the pianist fraternity, an artist whose credo stems from his teacher, the great virtuoso Josef Hofmann. It is a school of personal quirk and technical brilliance that has seemed out of kilter with our era of po-faced accent on authenticity and perfect manners, all tending towards uniformity of execution... Nimbus is to be congratulated for taking charge of Cherkassky during the 1980s and offering him the company's Welsh headquarters to record in at will on his own time scale. As a result of long takes and pleasant surroundings in which Cherkassky thrives, this collection is truly representative of a player who hasn't always had his due." - Daily Telegraph, U.K. Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Variations for Piano and Orchestra in B flat major on Mozart's "Là ci darem", Op. 2 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1827; Poland 
Date of Recording: 02/11/1987 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 17 Minutes 44 Secs. 
2.
Symphonic Etudes for Piano, Op. 13 by Robert Schumann
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1837/1852; Germany 
Date of Recording: 02/11/1987 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 26 Minutes 47 Secs. 
3.
Variations (28) for Piano on a theme by Paganini, Op. 35 by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1862-1863; Austria 
Date of Recording: 02/11/1987 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 25 Minutes 48 Secs. 
4.
Charakterskizzen (4) for Piano: no 4, Kaleidoskop by Josef Hofmann
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: by 1908 
Date of Recording: 02/11/1987 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 4 Minutes 46 Secs. 
5.
Chinese Pieces (3): no 3, Rush Hour in Hong Kong by Abram Chasins
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1925; USA 
Date of Recording: 02/11/1987 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 1 Minutes 37 Secs. 
6.
Chaconne for Piano in D minor (after Bach, BWV 1004), K B24 by Ferruccio Busoni
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: ?1897 
7.
Sonata for Piano, Op. 1 by Alban Berg
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: ?1907-08; Austria 
Date of Recording: 1984 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 9 Minutes 44 Secs. 
8.
Harmonies poétiques et réligieuses, S 173: no 7, Funérailles by Franz Liszt
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1845-1852; Weimar, Germany 
Date of Recording: 1984 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 12 Minutes 47 Secs. 
9.
Sonata for Piano no 13 in E flat major, Op. 27 no 1 "Quasi una fantasia" by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Classical 
Written: 1800-1801; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 1984 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 17 Minutes 13 Secs. 
10.
Impromptus (4) for Piano, D 899/Op. 90: no 2 in E flat major by Franz Schubert
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1827; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 1985 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 4 Minutes 25 Secs. 
11.
Impromptus (4) for Piano, D 899/Op. 90: no 3 in G flat major by Franz Schubert
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1827; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 1985 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 4 Minutes 59 Secs. 
12.
Kreisleriana, Op. 16 by Robert Schumann
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1838; Germany 
Date of Recording: 1985 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 32 Minutes 54 Secs. 
13.
Scherzo for Piano no 1 in B minor, B 65/Op. 20 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1831-1832; Poland 
Date of Recording: 1985 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 9 Minutes 39 Secs. 
14.
Symphonic metamorphosis of Johann Strauss's "Wein, Weib und Gesang" Waltzes by Leopold Godowsky
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: Berlin, Germany 
Date of Recording: 1985 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 9 Minutes 36 Secs. 
15.
Sonata for Piano no 3 in B minor, B 155/Op. 58 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1844; Paris, France 
Date of Recording: 1985 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 26 Minutes 7 Secs. 
16.
Mazurkas (4) for Piano, B 115/Op. 33: no 4 in B minor by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1837-1838; Paris, France 
Date of Recording: 1985 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 4 Minutes 6 Secs. 
17.
Nocturnes (2) for Piano, Op. 27: no 2 in D flat major, B 96 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1835; Paris, France 
Date of Recording: 1985 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 6 Minutes 25 Secs. 
18.
Mazurkas (3) for Piano, B 162/Op. 63: no 3 in C sharp minor by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1846; Paris, France 
Date of Recording: 1985 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 2 Minutes 2 Secs. 
19.
Nocturnes (2) for Piano, B 161/Op. 62: no 2 in E major by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1846; Paris, France 
Date of Recording: 1985 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 5 Minutes 52 Secs. 
20.
Nocturne for Piano in E minor, B 19/Op. 72 no 1 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1827; Poland 
Date of Recording: 1985 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 4 Minutes 48 Secs. 
21.
Andante spianato et Grand polonaise brillante in E flat major, Op. 22 by Frédéric Chopin
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1830-1831; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 1985 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 15 Minutes 14 Secs. 
22.
Sonata for Piano in B minor, S 178 by Franz Liszt
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1852-1853; Weimar, Germany 
Date of Recording: 1985 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 28 Minutes 14 Secs. 
23.
Pétrouchka: Three movements for Piano by Igor Stravinsky
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1921; France 
Date of Recording: 1985 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 19 Minutes 30 Secs. 
24.
Hungarian Rhapsodies (19) for Piano, S 244: no 2 in C sharp minor by Franz Liszt
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1847; Hungary 
Date of Recording: 1985 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 9 Minutes 25 Secs. 
25.
Prelude, Fugue and Variation for Organ in B minor, Op. 18 by César Franck
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1862; France 
Date of Recording: 1987 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 17 Minutes 48 Secs. 
26.
Sonata for Piano in E minor, Op. 7 by Edvard Grieg
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1865/1887; Norway 
Date of Recording: 1987 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 18 Minutes 52 Secs. 
27.
Quatre études de rhythme: no 1, Ile de Feu I by Olivier Messiaen
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1949; France 
Date of Recording: 1987 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 2 Minutes 11 Secs. 
28.
Quatre études de rhythme: no 2, Ile de Feu II by Olivier Messiaen
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1949; France 
Date of Recording: 1987 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 5 Minutes 15 Secs. 
29.
Variations on a theme of Corelli, Op. 42 by Sergei Rachmaninov
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1931; USA 
Date of Recording: 1987 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 17 Minutes 33 Secs. 
30.
Pictures at an Exhibition for Piano by Modest Mussorgsky
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1874; Russia 
Date of Recording: 1987 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 33 Minutes 51 Secs. 
31.
Sonata for Piano in A major, D 664/Op. 120 by Franz Schubert
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1819/1825; Vienna, Austria 
Date of Recording: 1987 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 21 Minutes 0 Secs. 
32.
Touches by Leonard Bernstein
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1980-1981; USA 
Date of Recording: 1987 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 8 Minutes 56 Secs. 
33.
Concert Paraphrase on Tchaikovsky's "Eugene Onegin" by Paul Pabst
Performer:  Shura Cherkassky (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 19th Century; Russia 
Date of Recording: 1987 
Venue:  Nimbus Records, Monmouthshire, England 
Length: 12 Minutes 50 Secs. 

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 Cherkassky on Nimbus: Elegant but low voltage October 8, 2013 By T. Drake (South Euclid, OH) See All My Reviews "This CD set contains Shura Cherkassky's complete recordings for the Nimbus label. They were all made under studio conditions, and while these performances might not have the last ounce of spontaneity and brio that Cherkassky's live performances were known for, they have a beauty all their own. Cherkassky was a pupil of Josef Hofmann, but in many ways his playing reminds me of Benno Moiseiwitsch: a ringing, non-percussive tone; unruffled, relaxed virtuosity; unforced poetry. The Bach-Busoni Chaconne has greater metric flexibility that one usually hears in this work, with each variation building on the previous one. While many pianists tend to heavy-hand Beethoven's Op, 27, No. 2 Sonata (the "Moonlight's" neglected sister), Cherkassky's interpretation is eminently civilized, with impressionistic tone painting in the opening movement, gently bouncing rhythm in 2nd movement, vocally inspired phrasing in the slow movement, and a flowing, unruffled finale. This may not be Serkin's Beethoven, but on its own terms is convincing. Schubert's Impromptu in E-flat whizzes by with Cherkassky effortlessly brushing over the keys, but this approach is less successful in the G-flat Impromptu that follows - the latter is missing the otherworldly quality one longs for. The "little" A major sonata benefits from the pianist's metric flexibility and emphasis on tone - Schubert doesn't deserve the rhythmic straightjacket and ugly tone so many have foisted upon him. The more extroverted of Schumann's Symphonic Etudes are missing the last ounce of drive, and some sound over-pedaled. Cherkassky does not play the five posthumously published variations. The extremes of mood are likewise smoothed over in Kreisleriana - which emerges as more a picture of a mischievous cat than of a mad composer. Cherkassky plays the optional repeat in the Chopin's B minor Scherzo, but his variation of inner voices and tone color prevents the piece from sounding repetitive. The reflective Andante Spianato segues into a suave Grand Polonaise. The three Nocturnes benefit from Cherkassky's astonishing control of lower dynamics - it's a pity he never recorded a complete set. The Mazurkas balance gently bouncing rhythm with tonal painting. The B minor Sonata features an understated 1st movement and a fluent finale. The early Variations on "Là ci darem la mano" from Mozart's Don Giovanni features a lovely liquid tone, with the filigree floating over the left hand part - yet the faster variations are never played for cheap thrills. I heard Cherkassky give a blood on the keys performance of Liszt's B minor Sonata in Boston around 1990. The performance here is not quite on that level, although it remains compelling. One drawback is a startling misreading in a left hand passage, but the beauty of the lyrical passages is rare in a piece usually reserved for virtuoso display. The famous Hungarian Rhapsody starts off rather perfunctorily and fails to catch fire in the friska - the gypsies are drowsy. One feels the eerie presence of Liszt's Hungarian patriot friends in Funérailles - truly a mournful performance in which the left hand octaves are integrated into the piece rather than tossed off as a stunt. Cherkassky plays both books of Brahms' Paganini Variations - each offered on one track. The famous theme is mercurial instead of driven, which sets the tone for the variations; each deliciously voiced, with unhurried tempos affording greater clarity in the faster variations. The pianist plays Franck's Chorale, Prelude & Fugue as more of an extended fantasia than the more formal presentation one hears from Rubinstein or Perahia. Cherkassky evidently sees Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition as pure, rather than programmatic, music. There is little in the way of characterization of the individual pictures, and the Promenade sections are lacking the awkwardness that Mussorgsky wrote into the piece (using alternating 5/4 and 6/4 time signatures). The end result is rather underwhelming. The more virtuosic of Rachmaninoff's Corelli Variations are largely insinuated rather than declaimed, while the slower ones are lacking inner tension. It's a pity that neither the composer nor Horowitz left us recordings of this work. Likewise, Cherkassky's breezy, easy going Grieg Sonata never gets off the ground. Cherkassky's fluid rendition of Berg's Sonata presents the structure clearly while uncovering the emotional content. Cherkassky's performance of Petrouchka reminds me that the work originated as a ballet score, although Rubinstein and Pollini deliver far more thrills. As for the Messiaen, it's a bit more digestible than usual. Cherkassky made a specialty of several now nearly forgotten works: His teacher Hofmann's Kaleidoscope, turning in shimmering colors. Chasins' Rush Hour in Hong Kong gently hustles & bustles - a far cry from the high octane Hong Kong of today! The sound, consistent throughout the set, is nicely balanced between intimacy and ambience - reflecting Nimbus' minimalist approach to recording using one carefully placed stereo microphone. This is one of the finest sounding piano recordings I've ever heard. Sadly, Cherkassky never recorded two of his most famous "party pieces" for Nimbus: his own Prelude Pathetique and Morton Gould's Boogie-Woogie Etude are available elsewhere - collectors should seek these out." Report Abuse
Review This Title
Review This Title Share on Facebook




YOU MUST BE A SUBSCRIBER TO LISTEN - TRY IT FREE!
Listen to all your favorite classical music for only $20/month.
Sign up for your monthly subscription service and get unlimited access to the most comprehensive digital catalog of classical music in the world - new releases. bestsellers, advanced releases and more.
Aleady a subscriber? Sign In