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Lutoslawski: Piano Concerto, Etc / Zimerman, Lutoslawski


Release Date: 03/02/1992 
Label:  Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog #: 431664   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Witold Lutoslawski
Performer:  Krystian Zimerman
Conductor:  Witold Lutoslawski
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 0 Hours 55 Mins. 

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This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.

Notes and Editorial Reviews

The first recording of Lutoslawski's most recent large-scale work, the Piano Concerto of 1988, is an important event, but I find the work itself an enigma. Is it an imaginative, resourceful adaptation of the textural and formal conventions of the romantic and early modern concerto to the very personal features of Lutoslawski's own musical language? Or is it an uneasy compromise between old and new—perhaps even a failed attempt to escape into the new from the old? Undoubtedly there are passages which not only recall Bartok and Prokofiev, but even the kind of music which the unsympathetic might dub "atonal Rachmaninov". Nevertheless, Lutoslawski—the old Lutoslawski—is never wholly absent, not least when one appreciates the skilful Read more proportioning of four fairly extended movements, and the presence of some lively orchestral textures. The performance itself is exemplary, with Krystian Zimerman immaculate in his gradations of touch and tone: he is indeed a commanding soloist, completely at home with the ambiguous idiom.

The two purely orchestral works go well together. Novelette (1979) is rarely heard, but it is one of Lutoslawski's most attractive and original orchestral compositions, worthy to stand alongside Livre and Mi-Parti. It has the lightness of an extended scherzo, beginning and ending with a flourish that seems to invoke the finale of Beethoven's Seventh, but its dancing rhythms and crisply contrasted sonorities don't preclude more sustained materials, especially in the final section. Chain 3 (1986) is more soberly elegant and shapely, with many ravishing instrumental effects and a tendency to focus on cantabile lines that anticipates the Piano Concerto. These performances of Novelette and Chain 3 are expertly played, but perhaps a little too cautious. Certainly, greater interpretative boldness in Novelette might bring out even more of its abundant character. The sound throughout is spacious and wellbalanced.

-- Gramophone [4/1992]
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Works on This Recording

1.
Concerto for Piano "For Krystian Zimerman" by Witold Lutoslawski
Performer:  Krystian Zimerman (Piano)
Conductor:  Witold Lutoslawski
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1988; Poland 
Date of Recording: 11/1989 
Venue:  Henry Wood Hall, London 
Length: 25 Minutes 42 Secs. 
2.
Chain 2 for Violin and Orchestra : Ad libitum by Witold Lutoslawski
Conductor:  Witold Lutoslawski
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1985; Poland 
Date of Recording: 03/1990 
Venue:  Henry Wood Hall, London 
Length: 11 Minutes 50 Secs. 
3.
Novelette by Witold Lutoslawski
Conductor:  Witold Lutoslawski
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1978-1979; Poland 
Date of Recording: 03/1990 
Venue:  Henry Wood Hall, London 
Length: 17 Minutes 31 Secs. 

Sound Samples

Concerto for Piano and Orchestra: 1. ca. 110
Concerto for Piano and Orchestra: 2. Presto - attaca
Concerto for Piano and Orchestra: 3. ca. 85
Concerto for Piano and Orchestra: 4. ca. 84
Chain 3 For Orchestra (1986): 1. Presto
Chain 3 For Orchestra (1986): 2. Presto
Chain 3 For Orchestra (1986): 3. 38
Novelette For Orchestra (1979): 1. Announcement
Novelette For Orchestra (1979): 2. First Event
Novelette For Orchestra (1979): 3. Second Event
Novelette For Orchestra (1979): 4. Third Event
Novelette For Orchestra (1979): 5. Conclusion

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