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 / Bruffy
Release Date: 03/10/2015   Label: Chandos  
Catalog: 5148   Number of Discs: 1
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Yevgeny Sudbin plays Medtner & Rachmaninov
Release Date: 02/12/2016   Label: Bis  
Catalog: 1848   Number of Discs: 1
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Tchaikovsky: The Nutcracker Suite;  Rachmaninov / Argerich
Release Date: 11/04/2008   Label: Deutsche Grammophon  
Catalog: 410616   Number of Discs: 1
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Rachmaninov: Songs / Sergei Leiferkus, Howard Shelley
Release Date: 08/22/1995   Label: Chandos  
Catalog: 9374   Number of Discs: 1
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Rachmaninov: The Piano Trios / Borodin Trio
Release Date: 09/30/1992   Label: Chandos  
Catalog: 8341   Number of Discs: 1
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Work: Prelude in C sharp minor, Op. 3 no 2

Browse 26-50 of 129 Available Recordings
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  • 26.
    Wilhelm Backhaus - The Virtuoso
    Label: Profil   Catalog: 12052 Release Date: 09/25/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Richard Strauss,  Riccardo Pick-Mangiagalli,  Frédéric Chopin  ... 
    Performer:  Wilhelm Backhaus
    CD: $34.99
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  • 27.
    Russian Piano Marathon / Ilya Itin
    Label: Video Artists International   Catalog: 4561 Release Date: 09/11/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Prokofiev,  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Ilya Itin
    DVD: $28.99
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  • 28.
    Jimmy - James Rhodes Live In Brighton
    Label: Signum U.k.   Catalog: 308 Release Date: 06/19/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Moritz Moszkowski,  Sergei Rachmaninov  ... 
    Performer:  James Rhodes
    CD: $25.49
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  • 29.
    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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  • 30.
    Icon - Alexis Weissenberg: The Champagne Pianist
    Label: Warner 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  ... 
    CD: $68.99
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  • 31.
    Rachmaninov: Complete Solo Piano Works
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 9192 Release Date: 02/28/2012   Number of Discs: 9
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Santiago Rodriguez,  Alexander Ghindin,  Nils Franke,  Garrick Ohlsson  ... 
    CD: $44.49
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  • 32.
    The 50 Darkest Pieces Of Classical Music
    Label: X5 Music Group   Catalog: 108 Release Date: 10/25/2011   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Franz Liszt,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Edvard Grieg,  Camille Saint-Saëns  ... 
    Performer:  Michael Ponti,  Finghin Collins,  Roland Pöntinen,  Emmy Berhey  ... 
    Conductor:  Volke Schmidt-Gertenbach,  Heribert Beissel,  David Parry,  James DePreist  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Moyzes String Quartet,  Camerata Antonio Lucio,  Capella Istropolitana  ... 
    CD: $24.99
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  • 33.
    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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  • 34.
    Russian Piano Music Vol 6 - Rachmaninov / Sergei Dukachev
    Label: Divine Art   Catalog: 25095 Release Date: 06/14/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Sergei Dukachev
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  • 35.
    Rachmaninoff Recital / Vassily Primakov
    Label: Bridge   Catalog: 9348 Release Date: 05/10/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Vassily Primakov
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  • 36.
    Rachmaninoff: Complete Piano Music / Michael Ponti
    Label: Musical Concepts   Catalog: 198 Release Date: 04/05/2011   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Sergei Taneyev
    Performer:  Michael Ponti,  Robert Leonardy
    On sale! $29.98
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  • 37.
    Rachmaninov: Music For Piano / Jeremy Filsell
    Label: Signum U.k.   Catalog: 230 Release Date: 03/29/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Jeremy Filsell
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  • 38.
    Idil Biret Plays Myakovsky, Liszt & Scriabin
    Label: Iba [idil Biret Archives]   Catalog: 8571281 Release Date: 10/26/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Nikolay Myaskovsky,  Franz Liszt,  Alexander Scriabin,  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Idil Biret
    CD: $9.99
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  • 39.
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 776616 Release Date: 10/19/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Ingryd Thorson,  Julien Thurber,  David Gardiner
    DVD: $11.99
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  • 40.
    Rachmaninov: 24 Preludes / Steven Osborne
    Label: Hyperion   Catalog: 30015 Release Date: 10/12/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Steven Osborne
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  • 41.
    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
    CD: $39.99
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  • 42.
    Dance! - The World's Favorite Ice-Skating Music
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 58906 Release Date: 02/09/2010   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Jerry Herman,  Frédéric Chopin,  Vittorio Monti,  Dmitri Shostakovich  ... 
    Performer:  John Ogdon,  Vag Papian,  Maxim Vengerov,  Tasmin Little  ... 
    Conductor:  Julian Kelly,  Yuri Temirkanov,  Wolfgang Sawallisch,  Matt Dunkley  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Piccadilly Theatre Orchestra,  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra,  Philadelphia Orchestra  ... 
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  • 43.
    Rachmaninov: Rhapsody On A Theme / Jean Philippe Collard
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 97170 Release Date: 10/20/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Jean-Philippe Collard
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  • 44.
    Rachmaninov Goes To Hollywood
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 457132 Release Date: 06/19/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Lazar Berman,  Tamás Vásáry
    Conductor:  Lorin Maazel,  Yuri Ahronovitch
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra
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  • 45.
    Legendary Russian Pianists
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 9014 Release Date: 06/02/2009   Number of Discs: 25
    Composer:  Sergei Prokofiev,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Dmitri Kabalevsky,  Franz Liszt  ... 
    Performer:  Rudolf Kerer,  Konstantin Igumnov,  Yakov Flier,  Vladimir Horowitz  ... 
    Conductor:  Alexander Gauk,  Gennadi Rozhdestvensky,  David Oistrakh,  Gennadi Rozhdestvensky  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestra,  USSR Radio/TV Symphony Orchestra,  Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $98.99
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  • 46.
    Rachmaninov: 24 Preludes / Osborne
    Label: Hyperion   Catalog: 67700 Release Date: 05/12/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Steven Osborne
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  • 47.
    Reference Gold - Mozart, Rachmaninov / Anna & Ines Walachowski
    Label: Berlin Classics   Catalog: 115092 Release Date: 04/14/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Sergei Rachmaninov
    Performer:  Anna Walachowski,  Ines Walachowski
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  • 48.
    Best Encores 100
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 64752 Release Date: 02/24/2009   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  Alexander Goedicke,  Giuseppe Verdi,  Teodor Grigoriu,  Ernesto De Curtis  ... 
    Performer:  Ole Edvard Antonsen,  Wolfgang Sawallisch,  Placido Domingo,  Cheryl Studer  ... 
    Conductor:  John Barker,  Asher Fisch,  Sir Andrew Davis,  Franz Welser-Möst  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Opera House Covent Garden Orchestra,  London Philharmonic Orchestra,  National Theater Opera Orchestra of Paris  ... 
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  • 49.
    Emil Gilels - Live In Moscow Vol 3
    Label: Video Artists International   Catalog: 4468 Release Date: 07/22/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Sergei Prokofiev,  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Emil Gilels
    DVD: $34.99
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  • 50.
    Romantic Music For Two Pianos / Pierce, Jonas
    Label: Msr   Catalog: 1260 Release Date: 06/17/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Arthur Benjamin,  Benjamin Britten,  Witold Lutoslawski  ... 
    Performer:  Dorothy Jonas,  Joshua Pierce
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