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Rachmaninov: Piano Concertos Nos. 2 & 3 / Sudbin, Oramo, BBC Symphony Orchestra


Release Date: 01/12/2018 
Label:  Bis   Catalog #: 2338  
Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov
Performer:  Yevgeny Sudbin
Conductor:  Sakari Oramo
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Length: 1 Hours 15 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

There are elegant, intelligent performances from a soloist who’s clearly thought about the music and knows how to get what he wants out of it. In the Second Concerto, Sudbin throws down the gauntlet right at the start with an unusually swift and (as it turns out) in-tempo account of the introductory chords. Unlike so many hot shot virtuosi, he doesn’t try to overwhelm the orchestra when it enters with the first subject–he understands that in this work he accompanies the ensemble as much as the other way around. So the solo emerges naturally from the instrumental texture, and from there on the music moves forward fluently, effortlessly, lyrically in the slow movement, and with plenty of panache in the finale. It’s really one of the better Read more accounts of this piece in many years, assisted in no small degree by Oramo’s alert conducting and BIS’s typically realistic, well-balanced engineering.

The Third Concerto is almost as good, but not quite. Sudbin plays the first movement relatively swiftly and gracefully, with scrupulous attention to dynamics. His choice of the larger, clunkier cadenza might seem odd in this context, but given his slightly understated approach to the rest of the movement the opportunity for some fireworks works rather well. In the Intermezzo, you won’t hear a more cogent handling of its tricky tempo relationships anywhere. As in the Second Concerto, fluency is the name of the game, and not a bar hangs fire. It’s only in the Finale that you wish Sudbin had thrown caution to the breeze and let go just a little bit more. While I appreciate his desire to impose some shape and phrasing on the first subject’s thickets of notes, never mind his ability to really do it, the movement could move a bit more quickly, or at least more freely.

Still, the interpretation is consistently of a piece, smart and very musical, and alongside the magnificent Second Concerto the disc earns a confident recommendation. I suspect it will wear well over time.

– ClassicsToday (David Hurwitz) Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Concerto for Piano no 2 in C minor, Op. 18 by Sergei Rachmaninov
Performer:  Yevgeny Sudbin (Piano)
Conductor:  Sakari Oramo
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: Russia 
Length: 32 Minutes 5 Secs. 
2.
Concerto for Piano no 3 in D minor, Op. 30 by Sergei Rachmaninov
Performer:  Yevgeny Sudbin (Piano)
Conductor:  Sakari Oramo
Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1909; Russia 
Length: 42 Minutes 15 Secs. 

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