Sergei Rachmaninov

Biography

Born: Apr 1, 1873; Russia   Died: Mar 28, 1943; USA   Period: 20th Century
Sergei Vasilyevich Rachmaninov, born in Semyonovo, Russia, on April 1, 1873, is today remembered as one of the most formidable pianists of all time and the last truly great composer in the Russian Romantic tradition. Rachmaninov came from a music-loving, land-owning family; young Sergey's mother fostered the boy's innate talent by giving him his first piano lessons. After a decline in the family fortunes, the Rachmaninovs moved to St. Petersburg, Read more where Sergei studied with Vladimir Delyansky at the Conservatory. As his star continued to rise, Sergei went to the Moscow Conservatory, where he received a sound musical training: piano lessons from the strict disciplinarian Nikolay Zverev and Alexander Siloti (Rachmaninov's cousin), counterpoint with Taneyev, and harmony with Arensky. During his time at the Conservatory, Rachmaninov boarded with Zverev, whose weekly musical Sundays provided the young musician the valuable opportunity to make important contacts and to hear a wide variety of music.

As Rachmaninov's conservatory studies continued, his burgeoning talent came into full flower; he received the personal encouragement of Tchaikovsky, and, a year after earning a degree in piano, took the Conservatory's gold medal in composition for his opera Aleko (1892). Early setbacks in his compositional career -- particularly, the dismal reception of his Symphony No. 1 (1895) -- led to an extended period of depression and self-doubt, which he overcame with the aid of hypnosis. With the resounding success of his Piano Concerto No. 2 (1900-1901), however, his lasting fame as a composer was assured. The first decade of the twentieth century proved a productive and happy one for Rachmaninov, who during that time produced such masterpieces as the Symphony No. 2 (1907), the tone poem Isle of the Dead (1907), and the Piano Concerto No. 3 (1909). On May 12, 1902, the composer married his cousin, Natalya Satina.

By the end of the decade, Rachmaninov had embarked on his first American tour, which cemented his fame and popularity in the United States. He continued to make his home in Russia but left permanently following the Revolution in 1917; he thereafter lived in Switzerland and the United States between extensive European and American tours. While his tours included conducting engagements (he was twice offered, and twice refused, leadership of the Boston Symphony Orchestra), it was his astounding pianistic abilities which won him his greatest glory. Rachmaninov was possessed of a keyboard technique marked by precision, clarity, and a singular legato sense. Indeed, the pianist's hands became the stuff of legend. He had an enormous span -- he could, with his left hand, play the chord C-E flat-G-C-G -- and his playing had a characteristic power, which pianists have described as "cosmic" and "overwhelming." He is, for example, credited with the uncanny ability to discern, and articulate profound, mysterious movements in a musical composition which usually remain undetected by the superficial perception of rhythmic structures.

Fortunately for posterity, Rachmaninov recorded much of his own music, including the four piano concerti and what is perhaps his most beloved work, the Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini (1934). He became an American citizen a few weeks before his death in Beverly Hills, CA, on March 28, 1943. Read less

Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No 2; Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade / Matsuev, Temirkanov
Release Date: 08/26/2014   Label: Euroarts  
Catalog: 75068   Number of Discs: 1
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Emil Gilels Legacy Vol 7 - Rachmaninov
Release Date: 09/02/2003   Label: Doremi Records  
Catalog: 7815   Number of Discs: 1
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Rachmaninov: Etudes-tableaux / Nicholas Angelich
Release Date: 08/12/2014   Label: Harmonia Mundi  
Catalog: 951547   Number of Discs: 1
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Rachmaninov: Symphony No 2, Vocalise / Shui, Singapore Symphony
Release Date: 03/31/2009   Label: Bis  
Catalog: 1712   Number of Discs: 1
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Rachmaninov: Symphony No  3, Rhapsody On A Theme Of Paganini / Sudbin, Shui, Singapore Symphony
Release Date: 02/28/2012   Label: Bis  
Catalog: 1988   Number of Discs: 1
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Work: Concerto for Piano no 3 in D minor, Op. 30

Browse 26-50 of 165 Available Recordings
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  • 26.
    Eugene Ormandy Conducts 20th Century Classics
    Label: Sony (Nax615)   Catalog: 417202 Release Date: 11/06/2012   Number of Discs: 12
    Composer:  Gustav Holst,  Claude Debussy,  Maurice Ravel,  Modest Mussorgsky  ... 
    Performer:  John Williams,  Vladimir Ashkenazy,  Van Cliburn,  Isaac Stern  ... 
    Conductor:  Eugene Ormandy
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philadelphia Orchestra,  Mendelssohn Club Chorus Philadelphia,  Rutgers University Chorus
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  • 27.
    Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto Nos. 1 & 3
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001742702 Release Date: 10/09/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Jean-Yves Thibaudet
    Conductor:  Vladimir Ashkenazy
    CD: $8.99
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  • 28.
    Rachmaninov: Complete Piano Concertos / Andsnes, Pappano, Berlin Philharmonic, London Symphony
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 19385 Release Date: 09/18/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Leif Ove Andsnes
    Conductor:  Antonio Pappano
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra
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  • 29.
    Van Cliburn: Great Piano Concertos
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 7742852 Release Date: 08/07/2012   Number of Discs: 7
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Frédéric Chopin,  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Robert Schumann  ... 
    Performer:  Van Cliburn
    Conductor:  Erich Leinsdorf,  Eugene Ormandy,  Fritz Reiner,  Walter Hendl  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Boston Symphony Orchestra,  Philadelphia Orchestra,  Chicago Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 30.
    Lang Lang - Complete Recordings On Deutsche Grammophon
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 001697972 Release Date: 07/24/2012   Number of Discs: 12
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Felix Mendelssohn,  Robert Schumann,  Franz Joseph Haydn  ... 
    Performer:  Lang Lang,  Guo-Ren Lang,  Wu Yuxia,  Chen Shasha  ... 
    Conductor:  Daniel Barenboim,  Valery Gergiev,  Long Yu,  Christoph Eschenbach  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony Orchestra,  St. Petersburg Mariinsky Theater Orchestra,  Central Philharmonic Orchestra of China  ... 
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  • 31.
    Nikolai Lugansky Plays Chopin, Rachmaninov, Beethoven & Prokofiev
    Label: Erato   Catalog: 666189 Release Date: 05/29/2012   Number of Discs: 9
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Frédéric Chopin,  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Sergei Prokofiev
    Performer:  Nikolai Lugansky,  Alexander Kniazev
    Conductor:  Sakari Oramo
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra
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    CD: $44.49
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  • 32.
    Icon - Alexis Weissenberg: The Champagne Pianist
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 6790862 Release Date: 03/13/2012   Number of Discs: 10
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Frédéric Chopin,  Johannes Brahms,  César Franck  ... 
    Performer:  Alexis Weissenberg
    Conductor:  Carlo Maria Giulini,  Herbert von Karajan,  Stanislaw Skrowaczewski,  Leonard Bernstein  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Orchestre de Paris,  Orchestre de la Société du Conservatoire Paris  ... 
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  • 33.
    Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No  3; Rubinstein: Piano Concerto No  4 / Joseph Moog
    Label: Onyx   Catalog: 4089 Release Date: 03/13/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Anton Rubinstein
    Performer:  Joseph Moog
    Conductor:  Nicholas Milton
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rheinland-Pfalz State Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 34.
    Boris Berezovsky - The Teldec Recordings
    Label: Teldec   Catalog: 2564664684 Release Date: 02/28/2012   Number of Discs: 10
    Composer:  Frédéric Chopin,  Leopold Godowsky,  Robert Schumann,  Franz Liszt  ... 
    Performer:  Boris Berezovsky
    Conductor:  Hugh Wolff,  Kurt Masur,  Dmitry Liss,  Eliahu Inbal
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  New York Philharmonic,  Ural State Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 35.
    Rachmaninov, Tchaikovsky: Piano Concertos / Rudy, Jansons, Leningrad Philharmonic
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 85198 Release Date: 01/24/2012   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Mikhail Rudy
    Conductor:  Mariss Jansons
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra,  Leningrad Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 36.
    Label: Archipel   Catalog: ARPCD0104 Release Date: 01/01/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Walter Gieseking
    Conductor:  Willem Mengelberg
    CD: $9.99
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  • 37.
    Label: Archipel   Catalog: ARPCD0343 Release Date: 01/01/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Emil Gilels
    Conductor:  Fritz Reiner,  Kiril Kondrashin
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  • 38.
    The Decca Sound [50-CD Set]
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001619902 Release Date: 11/15/2011   Number of Discs: 50
    Composer:  Manuel de Falla,  Claude Debussy,  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov,  Enrique Granados  ... 
    Performer:  Teresa Berganza,  Alfredo Campoli,  Vladimir Ashkenazy,  Cecilia Bartoli  ... 
    Conductor:  Ernest Ansermet,  Ataulfo Argenta,  Anatole Fistoulari,  Vladimir Ashkenazy  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Suisse Romande Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra,  Philharmonia Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $175.49
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  • 39.
    Ultimate Piano Concerto Collection (W/Cdrom) (Box)
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 9098 Release Date: 11/15/2011   Number of Discs: 30
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Felix Mendelssohn,  Frédéric Chopin,  Edvard Grieg  ... 
    Performer:  Derek Han,  Evgeni Kissin,  Karin Lechner,  Klára Würtz  ... 
    Conductor:  Paul Freeman,  Stephen Gunzenhauser,  Dmitri Kitayenko,  Eduardo Marturet  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Israel Chamber Orchestra,  Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $88.99
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  • 40.
    Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No. 3, Symphonic Dances / Spano, Ohlsson, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra
    Label: Aso Media (Label)   Catalog: 1003 Release Date: 10/25/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Garrick Ohlsson
    Conductor:  Robert Spano
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Atlanta Symphony Orchestra
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  • 41.
    Rakhmaninov: The Piano Concertos / John Lill, Tadaaki Otaka
    Label: Nimbus   Catalog: 1720 Release Date: 10/11/2011   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  John Lill
    Conductor:  Tadaaki Otaka
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC National Orchestra of Wales
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  • 42.
    Rachmaninov Edition: Complete Works
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 9071 Release Date: 09/27/2011   Number of Discs: 28
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Felix Mendelssohn,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Fritz Kreisler  ... 
    Performer:  Earl Wild,  Olga Lutsiv-Ternovskaya,  Leonid Bomstein,  Viacheslav Pochapsky  ... 
    Conductor:  Jascha Horenstein,  Gennadi Rozhdestvensky,  Leonard Slatkin,  Valeri Polyanskii  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra,  USSR Ministry of Culture Symphony Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 43.
    A Tribute To Rachmaninoff / Feltsman, Pletnev, Russian National Symphony Orchestra
    Label: Nimbus   Catalog: 6148 Release Date: 08/09/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Vladimir Feltsman
    Conductor:  Mikhail Pletnev
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Russian National Orchestra
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  • 44.
    The Martha Argerich Collection 4  [6-CD Set]
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001566002 Release Date: 06/14/2011   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Camille Saint-Saëns,  Alan Ridout  ... 
    Performer:  Martha Argerich,  Mischa Maisky,  Isabelle van Keulen,  Nelson Freire  ... 
    Conductor:  Riccardo Chailly,  Kiril Kondrashin,  David Zinman
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
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  • 45.
    Rachmaninov: Piano Concertos 3 & 4 / Andsnes
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 40516 Release Date: 10/26/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Leif Ove Andsnes
    Conductor:  Antonio Pappano
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
    CD: $17.99
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  • 46.
    Jorge Bolet - The Romantic Virtuoso
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001479502 Release Date: 10/05/2010   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Franz Liszt,  Paul de Schlözer,  Isaac Albeniz,  Claude Debussy  ... 
    Performer:  Jorge Bolet
    Conductor:  Sir Georg Solti,  Iván Fischer
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra
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  • 47.
    Icon - Emil Gilels
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 29511 Release Date: 09/14/2010   Number of Discs: 9
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Camille Saint-Saëns  ... 
    Performer:  Emil Gilels
    Conductor:  George Szell,  Leopold Ludwig,  André Vandernoot,  André Cluytens  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra,  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Society of the Conservatory Concerts Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $62.49
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  • 48.
    Waldbuhne In Berlin 2009 / Rattle, Berlin Philharmonic [Blu-ray]
    Label: Euroarts   Catalog: 2057754 Release Date: 06/29/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Igor Stravinsky
    Performer:  Yefim Bronfman
    Conductor:  Simon Rattle
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
    Blu-ray Video: $39.99
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  • 49.
    Byron Janis: The Legendary Concerto Recordings
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 6591822 Release Date: 06/01/2010   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Sergei Prokofiev,  Robert Schumann,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky  ... 
    Performer:  Byron Janis
    Conductor:  Antal Doráti,  Kiril Kondrashin,  Stanislaw Skrowaczewski,  Herbert Menges
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra,  Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 50.
    Rachmaninov: Piano Concertos 2 & 3 / Trpceski, Petrenko
    Label: Avie   Catalog: 2192 Release Date: 03/09/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Simon Trpceski
    Conductor:  Vasily Petrenko
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
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