Notes and Editorial Reviews
Under Würtz's assertive yet sensitive fingers lies a happy medium between Kissin's wild subjectivity and Pollini's more objective, symphonically oriented approach, between Richter's lightness and clarity and Argerich's breakneck terrain.
For excellent performances and rock-bottom prices, you can't beat the best of what Brilliant Classics has to offer, specifically its superb Blomstedt/Beethoven and Barshai/Shostakovich symphony cycles, along with an equally commanding Mozart piano sonata cycle from Klara Würtz. The young Hungarian pianist now turns her attention to Schumann's complete keyboard output. While the six major works encompassing Volume 1 have been well served on disc, Würtz's solo performances
unquestionably hold their turf alongside the reference versions, and then some. In Kreisleriana, for instance, she matches Radu Lupu's poetry and sweep while imparting more shape and meaning to the accompanimental filigree in the first movement's central episode; and she articulates rather than blurs No. 3's basic triplet rhythm as most pianists do. She also proves that No. 7's whirlwind momentum can be conveyed on a steadier course than the rockier road traveled via Martha Argerich's roller coaster.
Under Würtz's assertive yet sensitive fingers the C major Fantasy achieves a happy medium between Kissin's wild, arrestingly detailed subjectivity and Pollini's more objective, symphonically oriented approach. Pollini's similarly terse, Apollonian organization of the F-sharp minor Sonata's rambling tendencies finds a warmer, more colorful counterpart via Würtz. The Second Sonata's dense textures dance with all of Richter's lightness and clarity, adding enough speed to dazzle without venturing into the breakneck terrain over which Argerich and Hamelin stand guard. Würtz also brilliantly projects Faschingsschwank aus Wien's giddy, unbuttoned qualities as well as the work's poignant lyricism. Her tone quality seems gaunter and more trimmed-down in the concerto, not unlike Rudolf Serkin and Leon Fleisher minus their quavering nervous energy.
I would have expected more color and poetic nuance from this soloist (à la Moravec and Perahia), but perhaps the engineering factors into my observation. On the other hand, I really like how conductor Arie van Beck gives prominence to the orchestra's woodwinds and encourages the first-stand clarinet and oboe to put their heart and soul into their respective solo licks. If remaining installments live up to Volume 1's promise, Klára Würtz's will be the finest complete Schumann cycle to have been recorded by one pianist. An astounding bargain.
--Jed Distler, ClassicsToday.com Read less
Works on This Recording
Kreisleriana, Op. 16 by Robert Schumann
Klára Würtz (Piano)
Written: 1838; Germany
Concerto for Piano in A minor, Op. 54 by Robert Schumann
Klára Würtz (Piano)
Arie Van Beek
Northwest German Philharmonic Orchestra
Written: 1841-1845; Germany
Length: 30 Minutes 46 Secs.
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