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Tchaikovsky: Complete Music For Piano And Orchestra, Etc / Donohoe

Release Date: 10/02/2007 
Label:  Emi Classics   Catalog #: 00962   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Peter DonohoePaul TortelierNigel Kennedy
Conductor:  Rudolf BarshaiYan Pascal TortelierOkko Kamu
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bournemouth Symphony OrchestraNorthern SinfoniaLondon Philharmonic Orchestra
Number of Discs: 3 
Recorded in: Stereo 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Review of some of the recordings that make up this set:

Peter Donohoe's recording of Tchaikovsky's Second Piano Concerto deservedly won the GRAMOPHONE Concerto Award in 1988. The work had been most often heard in a truncated version provided by its earliest advocate, Siloti, but Donohoe and Barshai between them transformed the reputation of the much longer original version, with its concertante sections in the Andante— helped by fine contributions from Nigel Kennedy and Steven Isserlis. Barshai, also, by setting a sparkling pace for the first movement, counteracted the earlier view that this movement was inflated. With the lovely extended Andante at the heart of an inspirational reading, and the final glittering with
Read more bravura, this became one of the most desirable recent records for Tchaikovskians, and the recording, made in the Poole Arts Centre was worthy of it, with a firm, bold piano image realistically balanced against an orchestral sound that satisfyingly combined brilliance with body and warmth.

Donohoe and Barshai returned to Poole to record Tchaikovsky's other two concertos, and most recently the Concert Fantasia, which is here issued for the first time. The performance of the First Concerto is spacious and strong, yet does not match the Second in natural spontaneity. Much thought had obviously gone into the first movement, which has weight and poetry and considerable structural strength, but lacks the thrilling sense of forward momentum (and indeed the high voltage) that characterizes the famous 1943 Horowitz/Toscanini `live' Carnegie Hall performance on mid-price RCA (CD GD87992, 12/89). The Andantino is charmingly done and the finale has all the feeling of a Russian dance. In the coda there are stormy octaves from the soloist, and a broad, strongly moulded representation of the main lyrical tune to match the breadth of the opening movement. The Third Concerto is in a single movement, lasting just over a quarter of an hour. There is no lack of spontaneity here, and soloist and conductor successfully hold together a work that needs cohesion, with a nicely judged balance between lyricism and drama. Again the sound is very good.

The Concert Fantasia is laid out in two substantial movements, together lasting very nearly half an hour. It has a big, rumbustious cadenza at the centre of the first movement, which begins chirpily in the orchestra, sounding very like ballet music. Donohoe plays the cadenza very much in the grand manner. Here the hall resonance brings a degree of muddiness to the climax, and the pedal ling contributes to this, so that one feels he is going over the top a bit. But the effect is powerfully commanding. The second movement is called "Contrasts" and is a series of chimerical episodes: Andante can tabile—Molto vivaceVivacis.simo—Allegro moderato—VivacissimoMolto pii tranquillo—Vivace. The performers take the composer's markings very literally, and the fast music is raced through with exhilarating zest. This certainly provides plenty of contrast with the lyrical interludes (which have an engaging flavour of Russian folk-music) but is at times a little breathless. The music's rhetorical element is emphasized, so that when the penultimate Molto piq tranquillo arrives, after that dash, one is almost relieved.

– Gramophone [2/1991], reviewing an earlier issue of the works for piano and orchestra
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Works on This Recording

Concerto for Piano no 1 in B flat minor, Op. 23 by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Peter Donohoe (Piano)
Conductor:  Rudolf Barshai
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: Russia 
Length: 36 Minutes 3 Secs. 
Notes: Composition written: Russia (1874 - 1875). 
Concerto for Piano no 2 in G major, Op. 44 by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Peter Donohoe (Piano)
Conductor:  Rudolf Barshai
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1879-1880; Russia 
Length: 46 Minutes 45 Secs. 
Concerto for Piano no 3 in E flat major, Op. 75 by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Peter Donohoe (Piano)
Conductor:  Rudolf Barshai
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1893; Russia 
Length: 16 Minutes 7 Secs. 
Variations for Cello and Orchestra on a Rococo theme, Op. 33 by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Paul Tortelier (Cello)
Conductor:  Yan Pascal Tortelier
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Northern Sinfonia
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1876; Russia 
Length: 17 Minutes 26 Secs. 
Concert Fantasia for Piano and Orchestra in G major, Op. 56 by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Nigel Kennedy (Violin), Peter Donohoe (Piano)
Conductor:  Rudolf Barshai,  Okko Kamu
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra,  Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1884; Russia 
Length: 27 Minutes 49 Secs. 
Concerto for Violin in D major, Op. 35 by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Performer:  Nigel Kennedy (Violin)
Conductor:  Okko Kamu
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1878; Russia 
Length: 37 Minutes 54 Secs. 

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 A different Tchaikovsky February 19, 2013 By Patricia W. (Big Arm, MT) See All My Reviews "This music introduces you to a different side of Tchaikovsky. Much lighter than most of his music, with hints of Chopin and Schumann's touch for the piano. A great recital that you will most certainly enjoy." Report Abuse
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