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Evgeny Kissin plays Chopin: The Verbier Festival Recital
     

Evgeny Kissin plays Chopin: The Verbier Festival Recital

by Evgeny Kissin
 
Chopin has long been one of Evgeny Kissin's specialties, and no one who's heard the pianist's recordings of the Préludes or Ballades, among other works, is likely to be surprised by the mastery he shows in this live recital from the 2004 Verbier Festival in Switzerland. Kissin devoted his program on this occasion to Polonaises and Impromptus, but the sequence

Overview

Chopin has long been one of Evgeny Kissin's specialties, and no one who's heard the pianist's recordings of the Préludes or Ballades, among other works, is likely to be surprised by the mastery he shows in this live recital from the 2004 Verbier Festival in Switzerland. Kissin devoted his program on this occasion to Polonaises and Impromptus, but the sequence of works effectively encloses the dreamy Impromptus (all four of them) between opening and closing sets of the more heroic Polonaises. It's a satisfying approach in many respects, showcasing the diversity both of Chopin's inspiration and of Kissin's talents at the keyboard. The transition from the rainbow-chasing Fantasie-Impromptu to the dark opening elegy of the Polonaise in C Minor (Op. 40, No. 2) makes for an especially dramatic gesture, as if landing back on earth after the previous flight of fancy. Nowhere, however, does Kissin neglect the music's lyrical qualities -- even the funereal song of the C Minor Polonaise is very clearly a song -- and Kissin's technical perfection is channeled directly into poetic expression throughout. Virtuosity is most clearly on display in the closing "Heroic" Polonaise in A-flat (Op. 53), a Chopin favorite that Kissin has recorded before in the studio. But it's the less overtly demonstrative works, especially the Impromptus in F-sharp (Op. 36) and G-flat (Op. 51), in which he takes pains to find exactly the right ebb and flow of rubato, that really reveal this indispensable pianist at his thoughtful best.

Editorial Reviews

Philadelphia Inquirer - David Patrick Stearns
If a perfect Chopin album has been made since the heyday of Artur Rubinstein, it's this recital by Evgeny Kissin.
The Guardian - Tim Ashley
[Kissin's] Chopin is big-boned, monumental and percussive.

Product Details

Release Date:
01/09/2007
Label:
Sony Classics
UPC:
0828766866827
catalogNumber:
68668

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