Alkan: Grand Sonata "Les quatre âges"; Symphonie for piano solo; Le Festin d'Esope; Miniatures

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Uncle Dave Lewis
Better known as a teacher, pianist Alan Weiss records only infrequently; Martha Argerich is among Weiss' friends and admirers. Brilliant Classics' Alkan: Grande Sonate Les Quatre Ages is a budget-priced two-disc set featuring Weiss in works of a composer he dearly admires and plays with considerable expertise, Charles-Valentin Alkan. The first disc in this set was made for Channel Classics in 1989, whereas the second is newer, not made until 2007. In its original Channel Classics incarnation, the first disc obtained near legendary status among Alkan enthusiasts, as it was so obscure. Channel kept it in print such a short time and pressed it in such a small run that ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Uncle Dave Lewis
Better known as a teacher, pianist Alan Weiss records only infrequently; Martha Argerich is among Weiss' friends and admirers. Brilliant Classics' Alkan: Grande Sonate Les Quatre Ages is a budget-priced two-disc set featuring Weiss in works of a composer he dearly admires and plays with considerable expertise, Charles-Valentin Alkan. The first disc in this set was made for Channel Classics in 1989, whereas the second is newer, not made until 2007. In its original Channel Classics incarnation, the first disc obtained near legendary status among Alkan enthusiasts, as it was so obscure. Channel kept it in print such a short time and pressed it in such a small run that hardly anyone was able to find it, and indeed, it's difficult to confirm that Channel released it at all, though they did. The Channel-derived disc is a little quieter the later one made specifically for Brilliant, but otherwise the sonic differences are few. Weiss' interpretations of Alkan are significantly different from that of every other pianist that has handled this most enigmatic of romantics, as he favors a more classical approach in terms of tempo and articulation. Where there is obvious need for more warmth, such as in Alkan's "First Nocturne" and "Les Soupirs," Weiss slackens the tempo a bit for the sake of expression. Historical accounts of Alkan's own playing describes him as a player of the classical school, even in his own works, which he rarely played in public. Given the complex and dense textures of Alkan's music and his heavily marked scores, it is difficult to imagine how such an approach would work. Nevertheless, Weiss makes it so and presents particularly compelling alternatives of expression in the big Alkan works like the "Grande Sonate Les Quatre Ages" and the "Symphonie for piano." Brilliant Classics' Grande Sonate Les Quatre Ages is definitely a great deal if you want to get cozy with Alkan but don't know where to start. For listeners already familiar with the composer, this will afford an opportunity to plug a hole in their collections that stood long agape and to provide a fresh perspective on the work of this ever-intriguing composer.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 2/5/2008
  • Label: Brilliant Classics
  • UPC: 842977035681
  • Catalog Number: 93568

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Nocturne, for piano in B major No. 1, Op. 22 - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (6:25)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
  2. 2 La staccatissimo, for piano in F minor (Motifs 1/2), Op. 63/1/2 - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (1:08)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
  3. 3 La legatissimo, for piano in D minor (Motifs 1/3), Op. 63/1/3 - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (1:44)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
  4. 4 Morituri te salutant, for piano in G sharp minor (Motifs 2/21), Op. 63/2/21 - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (1:31)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
  5. 5 Increpatio, for piano in C sharp minor (Motifs 1/10), Op. 63/1/10 - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (1:34)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
  6. 6 Les soupirs, for piano in B flat major (Motifs 1/11), Op. 63/1/11 - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (1:40)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
  7. 7 Le premier billet doux, for piano in E flat major (Motifs 4/46), Op. 63/4/46 - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (0:59)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
  8. 8 Scherzetto, for piano in B flat minor (Motifs 4/47), Op. 63/4/47 - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (1:51)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
  9. 9 Le festin d'Esope, variations for piano in E minor (Études dans tous les tons mineurs No. 12), Op. 39/12 - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (10:15)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
  10. 10 Le temps qui n'est plus, prelude for piano in B flat minor (Préludes tous les tons No. 12), Op. 31/12 - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (1:35)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
  11. 11 Fa, for piano in A minor (Recueil de Chants 2/2), Op. 38b/2 - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (3:12)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
  12. 12–15 Grande Sonate "Les Quatre Ages", for piano in D major, Op. 33 - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (41:41)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
    1. 1220 ans, Scherzo (Tres vite, décidément); Trio (Timidement-amoureusement)
    2. 1330 ans, Quasi-Faust (assez vite, sataniquement)
    3. 1440 ans, Un heureux ménage (Lentement, avec tendresse et quiétitude)
    4. 1550 ans, Prométhée enchainé (Extremement lent)
  13. 16 Toccatina, for piano in C minor, Op. 75 - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (1:50)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
Disc 2
  1. 1 Promenade sur l'eau, morceau for piano in A major (Les Mois No. 6), Op. 74/6 - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (2:30)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
  2. 2 Gros temps, morceau for piano in F major (Les Mois No. 10), Op. 74/10 - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (3:23)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
  3. 3 Petites Fantaisies (3), for piano, Op. 41: No. 2 - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (6:22)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
  4. 4 Petit conte, for piano in E flat major - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (4:24)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
  5. 5 Le tambour bat aux champs, "esquisse" (piece) for piano in B minor, Op. 50bis - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (4:40)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
  6. 6 Recueil de Chants Book 1 (6), for piano, Op. 38: No. 1, Assez vivement - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (4:35)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
  7. 7 Recueil de Chants Book 1 (6), for piano, Op. 38: No. 5, Agitatissimo - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (3:56)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
  8. 8 Recueil de Chants Book 1 (6), for piano, Op. 38: No. 6, Barcarolle - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (3:51)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
  9. 9–12 Symphonie, for solo piano in C minor, Op. 39/4-7 - Charles-Valentin Alkan & Alan Weiss (29:30)
    Composed byCharles-Valentin Alkan
    1. 9No. 4, Allegro
    2. 10No. 5, Marche funèbre, andantino
    3. 11No. 6, Menuet
    4. 12No. 7, Finale, presto
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Alan Weiss Primary Artist
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