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Brahms: Piano Works / Wilhelm Backhaus


Release Date: 08/12/2010 
Label:  Decca   Catalog #: 433895   Spars Code: ADD 
Composer:  Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Wilhelm BackhausEmanuel Brabec
Conductor:  Karl Böhm
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Number of Discs: 2 
Recorded in: Mixed 
Length: 2 Hours 16 Mins. 

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This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.

Notes and Editorial Reviews

Backhaus was already in his eighties when he recorded this rugged, often heavyweight reading of one of the most formidable concertos in the repertory. At times there are signs in uneven rhythm that he was being strained almost to the limit, but hearing this richly enjoyable performance again has brought it home how remarkably few the flaws are, and the occasional moments of untidiness are a small price to pay. Böhm makes an excellently matched partner, obviously most sympathetic to the Backhaus approach, and the recording is of first-rate Decca vintage, produced by Ray Minshull. In the first movement it was not the measured tempo that struck me, but the litheness and urgency with Backhaus showing extraordinary agility in the opening Read more cadenza. Nor did the unusually slow tempo for the finale strike me as ineffective, when the clarity of articulation and the crispness of dotted rhythms are a delight.

-- Edward Greenfield, Gramophone [2/1981, reviewing the Second Piano Concerto]

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Works on This Recording

1.
Concerto for Piano no 1 in D minor, Op. 15 by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Wilhelm Backhaus (Piano)
Conductor:  Karl Böhm
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1854-1858; Germany 
Date of Recording: 06/1953 
Venue:  Großer Musikvereinsaal, Vienna, Austria 
Length: 43 Minutes 2 Secs. 
2.
Pieces (8) for Piano, Op. 76: no 2, Capriccio in B minor by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Wilhelm Backhaus (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1878; Austria 
Length: 2 Minutes 54 Secs. 
3.
Intermezzi (3) for Piano, Op. 117: no 1 in E flat major by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Wilhelm Backhaus (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1892; Austria 
Date of Recording: 1956 
Venue:  Großer Musikvereinsaal, Vienna, Austria 
Length: 4 Minutes 23 Secs. 
4.
Rhapsodies (2) for Piano, Op. 79: no 1 in B minor by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Wilhelm Backhaus (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1879; Austria 
Date of Recording: 1956 
Venue:  Großer Musikvereinsaal, Vienna, Austria 
Length: 7 Minutes 42 Secs. 
5.
Fantasies (7) for Piano, Op. 116: no 6, Intermezzo in E major by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Wilhelm Backhaus (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1892; Austria 
Date of Recording: 1956 
Venue:  Großer Musikvereinsaal, Vienna, Austria 
Length: 2 Minutes 37 Secs. 
6.
Pieces (4) for Piano, Op. 119: no 2, Intermezzo in E minor by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Wilhelm Backhaus (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1892; Austria 
Date of Recording: 1956 
Venue:  Großer Musikvereinsaal, Vienna, Austria 
Length: 4 Minutes 14 Secs. 
7.
Pieces (4) for Piano, Op. 119: no 3, Intermezzo in C major by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Wilhelm Backhaus (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1892; Austria 
Date of Recording: 1956 
Venue:  Großer Musikvereinsaal, Vienna, Austria 
Length: 1 Minutes 27 Secs. 
8.
Concerto for Piano no 2 in B flat major, Op. 83 by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Wilhelm Backhaus (Piano), Emanuel Brabec (Cello)
Conductor:  Karl Böhm
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1878-1881; Austria 
Date of Recording: 04/1967 
Venue:  Sofiensaal, Vienna, Austria 
Length: 47 Minutes 39 Secs. 
9.
Pieces (6) for Piano, Op. 118 by Johannes Brahms
Performer:  Wilhelm Backhaus (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1892; Austria 
Date of Recording: 1956 
Venue:  Großer Musikvereinsaal, Vienna, Austria 
Length: 19 Minutes 38 Secs. 

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