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: All-Night Vigil (Vespers) / Halsey, London Symphony Chorus
Release Date: 06/10/2016   Label: Lso Live  
Catalog: 781   Number of Discs: 1
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Rachmaninov: Symphony No. 3; Balakirev: Russia / Gergiev, London Symphony
Release Date: 09/11/2015   Label: Lso Live  
Catalog: 779   Number of Discs: 1
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Rachmaninov: Songs / Julia & Elena Sukmanova
Release Date: 06/10/2016   Label: Hänssler Classic  
Catalog: 16024   Number of Discs: 1
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Rachmaninov: The Isle Of The Dead, Etc / Jurowski, Et Al
Release Date: 10/18/2005   Label: Lpo  
Catalog: 4   Number of Discs: 1
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Rachmaninov: Piano Sonata No 1, Etc / Martin Cousin
Release Date: 05/30/2006   Label: Somm  
Catalog: 48   Number of Discs: 1
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Work: Preludes (10) for Piano, Op. 23: no 5 in G minor, Alla marcia

Browse 1-25 of 99 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    40 Most Beautiful Classical Pieces
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 556099 Release Date: 06/17/2016   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Antonio Vivaldi  ... 
    Performer:  Christian Zacharias,  David Fray,  Fabio Biondi,  Samson François  ... 
    Conductor:  David Zinman,  André Cluytens,  Antonio Pappano,  Tullio Serafin  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Arts Florissants
    CD: $12.99
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  • 2.
    Yevgeny Sudbin Plays Medtner & Rachmaninov
    Label: Bis   Catalog: 1848 Release Date: 02/12/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Nikolai Medtner,  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Yevgeny Sudbin
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  • 3.
    Rhapsody in Blue / Mailley-Smith
    Label: Sleeveless   Catalog: 1010 Release Date: 01/08/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov,  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Louis Moreau Gottschalk,  Ludwig van Beethoven  ... 
    Performer:  Warren Mailley-Smith
    On sale! $21.98
    CD: $17.99
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  • 4.
    111: The Collector's Editions [111 CDs]
    Label: Dg Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 002422702 Release Date: 12/11/2015   Number of Discs: 111
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Maurice Ravel,  Felix Mendelssohn  ... 
    Performer:  David Oistrakh,  Igor Oistrakh,  Sviatoslav Richter,  Martha Argerich  ... 
    Conductor:  Claudio Abbado,  Daniel Barenboim,  Lorin Maazel,  Franz Konwitschny  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Amadeus Quartet,  Orchestre de Paris  ... 
    CD: $325.49
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  • 5.
    Bits And Pieces
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 552365 Release Date: 11/20/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Arcangelo Corelli,  Sir Edward Elgar,  Alex de Taeye,  Fritz Kreisler  ... 
    Performer:  Samuel Sanders,  Itzhak Perlman
    CD: $11.99
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  • 6.
    50 Most Beautiful Classical Pieces
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 553009 Release Date: 11/13/2015   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Antonio Vivaldi  ... 
    Performer:  Christian Zacharias,  Nicolai Gedda,  Kerstin [Mezzo-soprano Vocal] Meyer,  Gré Brouwenstijn  ... 
    Conductor:  David Zinman,  André Cluytens,  David Fray,  Fabio Biondi  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Europa Galante,  Les Arts Florissants,  Concentus Musicus Wien
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  • 7.
    Kathryn Stott: The Complete Solo Recordings
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 88875135622 Release Date: 11/13/2015   Number of Discs: 9
    Composer:  Frédéric Chopin,  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Franz Liszt,  Gabriel Fauré  ... 
    Performer:  Kathryn Stott
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  • 8.
    Vladimir Horowitz: The Unreleased Live Recordings (1966-1983)
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 305458 Release Date: 10/23/2015   Number of Discs: 50
    Composer:  Recorded Sound,  Franz Joseph Haydn,  Robert Schumann,  Frédéric Chopin  ... 
    Performer:  Vladimir Horowitz
    Conductor:  Zubin Mehta
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  • 9.
    Russian Piano Music
    Label: Danacord   Catalog: 753 Release Date: 05/05/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Sergei Prokofiev,  Dmitri Shostakovich
    Performer:  Nina Kavtaradze
    On sale! $22.98
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  • 10.
    Rachmaninov: Complete RCA Recordings
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 88843073922 Release Date: 04/28/2015   Number of Discs: 10
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Franz Schubert,  Edvard Grieg  ... 
    Performer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Fritz Kreisler,  Natalie Rachmaninov,  Nadezhda Plevitskaya
    Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski,  Eugene Ormandy,  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philadelphia Orchestra
    On sale! $29.98
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  • 11.
    Sviatoslav Richter: The Complete Album Collection
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 301470 Release Date: 04/14/2015   Number of Discs: 18
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Franz Schubert,  Robert Schumann  ... 
    Performer:  Robert La Marchina,  Sviatoslav Richter
    Conductor:  Erich Leinsdorf,  Christoph Eschenbach
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  • 12.
    The Return / Raffi Besalyan
    Label: Sono Luminus   Catalog: 92187 Release Date: 03/31/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Arno Babadjanyan
    Performer:  Raffi Besalyan
    CD: $24.99
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  • 13.
    Mercury Living Presence - The Collector's Edition Vol 3
    Label: Mercury Living Presence   Catalog: 002275902 Release Date: 03/23/2015   Number of Discs: 53
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Franz Lehár,  Emil Waldteufel,  Johann Strauss Jr.  ... 
    Performer:  Rafael Druian,  Georges Miquelle,  Eugene List,  Alfred Mouledous  ... 
    Conductor:  Antal Doráti,  Stanislaw Skrowaczewski,  Frederick Fennell,  Anatole Fistoulari  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra,  Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra,  Philharmonia Hungarica  ... 
    CD: $213.99
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  • 14.
    Ewa Podles & Garrick Ohlsson - Live At The Fryderyk Chopin University  In Warsaw
    Label: Dux Records   Catalog: 9883 Release Date: 01/13/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Prokofiev,  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Modest Mussorgsky
    Performer:  Garrick Ohlsson,  Ewa Podles
    DVD: $29.99
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  • 15.
    Sviatoslav Richter - Complete Decca, Philips & DG Recordings
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 002236002 Release Date: 01/06/2015   Number of Discs: 51
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Frédéric Chopin,  Franz Joseph Haydn,  Ludwig van Beethoven  ... 
    Performer:  Sviatoslav Richter,  Mikhail Kopelman,  Valentin Berlinsky,  Mstislav Rostropovich  ... 
    Conductor:  Stanislaw Wislocki,  Kurt Sanderling,  Witold Rowicki,  János Ferencsik  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Moragues Woodwind Quintet members,  Borodin String Quartet,  Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
    On sale! $167.98
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  • 16.
    Rachmaninov: Preludes & Etudes-tableaux / Sviatoslav Richter
    Label: Praga   Catalog: 350083 Release Date: 12/09/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Sviatoslav Richter
    SuperAudio CD: $23.99
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  • 17.
    The Complete Rachmaninov Recordings (1937-43)  / Benno Moiseiwitsch
    Label: Apr (Appian)   Catalog: 5505 Release Date: 11/11/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Benno Moiseiwitsch
    Conductor:  Walter Goehr,  Basil Cameron
    CD: $17.99
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  • 18.
    Rachmaninov: The Complete Works
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 002145102 Release Date: 09/23/2014   Number of Discs: 32
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Franz Schubert,  Felix Mendelssohn,  Georges Bizet  ... 
    Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy,  André Previn,  Peter Jablonski,  Mikhail Pletnev  ... 
    Conductor:  André Previn,  Vladimir Ashkenazy,  Kiril Kondrashin,  Stanislaw Wislocki  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra,  Goldner String Quartet,  Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $117.99
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  • 19.
    Lazar Berman Rarities, Vol. 2
    Label: Idi   Catalog: 6686 Release Date: 06/10/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Liszt,  Alexander Scriabin,  Sergei Prokofiev,  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Lazar Berman
    CD: $14.99
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  • 20.
    Rachmaninov: Piano Sonatas / Wang
    Label: Chandos   Catalog: 10816 Release Date: 05/27/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Xiayin Wang
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  • 21.
    Rachmaninov: Complete Works for Piano / Ashkenazy
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 002033002 Release Date: 04/15/2014   Number of Discs: 11
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Franz Schubert,  Felix Mendelssohn,  Georges Bizet  ... 
    Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy,  André Previn,  Vovka Ashkenazy,  Dody Ashkenazy  ... 
    Conductor:  Bernard Haitink
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra,  Philharmonia Orchestra
    CD: $53.99
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  • 22.
    Lang Lang: The Romance of Rachmaninov
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 002003702 Release Date: 03/18/2014   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Lang Lang,  Vadim Repin,  Mischa Maisky
    Conductor:  Valery Gergiev,  Yuri Temirkanov
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  St. Petersburg Mariinsky Theater Orchestra,  St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 23.
    Emotional Vicissitudes / Yaroslav Senyshyn
    Label: Albany Records   Catalog: 1445 Release Date: 10/08/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Atsushi Yoshinaka
    Performer:  Yaroslav Senyshyn
    On sale! $19.98
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  • 24.
    Ingenious Opposites Vol 2 / Roman Zaslavsky
    Label: Euroarts   Catalog: 3003 Release Date: 09/24/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Sergei Prokofiev
    Performer:  Roman Zaslavsky
    CD: $19.99
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  • 25.
    Ingenious Opposites Vol 2 / Roman Zaslavsky [blu-ray audio+CD]
    Label: Euroarts   Catalog: 2003032 Release Date: 09/24/2013   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Sergei Prokofiev
    Performer:  Roman Zaslavsky
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    Blu-ray Audio: $19.99
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