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Mussorgsky: Pictures At An Exhibition, Etc / Mikhail Pletnev


Release Date: 11/28/2000 
Label:  Virgin Classics Special Import Catalog #: 59611   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Modest MussorgskyPeter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Mikhail Pletnev
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 4 Mins. 

This title is currently unavailable.



This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.

Notes and Editorial Reviews


Purists may raise an eyebrow or two over Mikhail Pletnev's myriad textual changes, including pronounced extremes of dynamics, voicing, and phrasing throughout Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition. Yet his compulsively worked out pianism invariably zeros in on the music's elemental and spiritual core. Who cares about a lone, minuscule finger slip in the opening, rather austerely shaped Promenade when each pitch rings out like a proclamation from on high? If you think that piano notes can't bend, just listen to the creepy trills Pletnev fashions out of Gnomus' plain melodic octaves. His extraordinary melody/accompaniment separation in The Old Castle gives the illusion of two distinct instruments,
Read more while Tuileries and Bydlo share a common, moderate tempo (many interpreters drag the latter's oxcarts into the mud). Likewise, the extra breathing room Pletnev allots to the Ballet of the Unhatched Chicks and the Marketplace at Limoges allows for greater textural interplay between the hands.

Incidentally, Pletnev follows Ravel's orchestral version of Pictures and omits the Promenade before Limoges. During Baba Yaga's final interlocking octave onslaught, Pletnev appears to sustain the sonorities with the middle pedal so that they bleed into the Great Gate at Kiev's opening measures. When the Promenade's theme triumphantly returns, Pletnev delays the tolling left-hand notes just a split second after the beat. I mention these unorthodox details because they convincingly evoke the spatial effect of distant bells and are thoroughly in keeping with the music's grand, uplifting sensibility.

Although many pianists have taken up Pletnev's transcription of excerpts from Tchaikovsky's Sleeping Beauty, few if any can match the transcriber's rich orchestral sonority, virtuosic élan, and natural instinct for balletic timing. Listen to Little Red Riding Hood's deliciously varied accentuations, Danse des Pages' miraculously poised double notes, and notice how the finale's thick chords never sound clotted or muddy. One also must mention Virgin Classics' gorgeous engineering. Now that this remarkable 1989 recital is available once again via Arkivmusic.com's on-demand reissue program, what are you waiting for?

--Jed Distler, ClassicsToday.com
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Works on This Recording

1.
Pictures at an Exhibition for Piano by Modest Mussorgsky
Performer:  Mikhail Pletnev (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1874; Russia 
Date of Recording: 11/1989 
Venue:  St Martin's Church, East Woodhay, UK 
Length: 31 Minutes 16 Secs. 
2.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 1, Prologue - Introduction by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Mikhail Pletnev (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 11/1989 
Venue:  St Martin's Church, East Woodhay, UK 
Length: 6 Minutes 12 Secs. 
Notes: Transcribed: Mikhail Pletnev 
3.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 9b, Act 1 - Dance of the Maids of Honor by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Mikhail Pletnev (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 11/1989 
Venue:  St Martin's Church, East Woodhay, UK 
Length: 1 Minutes 51 Secs. 
Notes: Transcribed: Mikhail Pletnev 
4.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: Vision of Aurora by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Mikhail Pletnev (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 11/1989 
Venue:  St Martin's Church, East Woodhay, UK 
Length: 1 Minutes 14 Secs. 
Notes: Transcribed: Mikhail Pletnev 
5.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 24c, Act 3 - Pas de quatre - Variation 2, La fée-argent by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Mikhail Pletnev (Piano)
Date of Recording: 11/1989 
Venue:  St Martin's Church, East Woodhay, UK 
Length: 1 Minutes 5 Secs. 
Notes: Transcribed: Mikhail Pletnev 
6.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 25, Act 3 - Pas de caractère, Puss-in-Boots and the White Cat by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Mikhail Pletnev (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 11/1989 
Venue:  St Martin's Church, East Woodhay, UK 
Length: 2 Minutes 21 Secs. 
Notes: Transcribed: Mikhail Pletnev 
7.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: Gavotte by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Mikhail Pletnev (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 11/1989 
Venue:  St Martin's Church, East Woodhay, UK 
Length: 0 Minutes 51 Secs. 
Notes: Transcribed: Mikhail Pletnev 
8.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: Le chaperon by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Mikhail Pletnev (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 11/1989 
Venue:  St Martin's Church, East Woodhay, UK 
Length: 1 Minutes 16 Secs. 
Notes: Transcribed: Mikhail Pletnev 
9.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: Act 3 - Adagio by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Mikhail Pletnev (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 11/1989 
Venue:  St Martin's Church, East Woodhay, UK 
Length: 4 Minutes 19 Secs. 
Notes: Transcribed: Mikhail Pletnev 
10.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: Andante cantabile by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Mikhail Pletnev (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 11/1989 
Venue:  St Martin's Church, East Woodhay, UK 
Length: 4 Minutes 57 Secs. 
Notes: Transcribed: Mikhail Pletnev 
11.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 26c, Act 3 - Variation 2, The Bluebird and the Florine Princess by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Mikhail Pletnev (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 11/1989 
Venue:  St Martin's Church, East Woodhay, UK 
Length: 0 Minutes 33 Secs. 
Notes: Transcribed: Mikhail Pletnev 
12.
Sleeping Beauty, Op. 66: no 5, Prologue - Finale by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Mikhail Pletnev (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888-1889; Russia 
Date of Recording: 11/1989 
Venue:  St Martin's Church, East Woodhay, UK 
Length: 3 Minutes 34 Secs. 
Notes: Transcribed: Mikhail Pletnev 

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