Saint-Saëns: Piano Concertos Nos. 2 & 5

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Leonard
The combination of artist and repertoire represented on this disc seems inevitable in retrospect. Jean-Yves Thibaudet, surely the most coruscating French pianist of his generation, had already proven his worth in numerous recordings of French solo piano music for Decca, and turning to French works for piano and orchestra was only a matter of time. And choosing Charles Dutoit, the most accomplished French conductor of his generation, as his accompanist was likewise inevitable. Having already recorded the orchestral works of Berlioz, Franck, Ravel, Debussy, and Saint-Saëns, he was uniquely qualified to support Thibaudet. Indeed, they get along together like oil and vinegar,...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Leonard
The combination of artist and repertoire represented on this disc seems inevitable in retrospect. Jean-Yves Thibaudet, surely the most coruscating French pianist of his generation, had already proven his worth in numerous recordings of French solo piano music for Decca, and turning to French works for piano and orchestra was only a matter of time. And choosing Charles Dutoit, the most accomplished French conductor of his generation, as his accompanist was likewise inevitable. Having already recorded the orchestral works of Berlioz, Franck, Ravel, Debussy, and Saint-Saëns, he was uniquely qualified to support Thibaudet. Indeed, they get along together like oil and vinegar, joining and separating as best serves to accent the pungent flavors of these savory works. The vivacious tunes of Saint-Saëns' "Second Concerto"'s Presto Finale have rarely sounded so light footed and high spirited, and the antique scales and exotic colors of his "Egyptian Concerto"'s Presto Finale have never sounded so evocative and weirdly compelling. Nor has the blazing virtuosity of Franck's "Variations symphoniques" often been so brilliantly articulated as under Thibaudet's strong but supple hands. Old timers might look back fondly on Rubinstein's aging recordings of the Saint-Saëns, but while contemporary listeners will be impressed by the older performances, they are likely to be blown away by these. Decca's digital sound is crisp, clear, and, as suits the music, vividly colorful.
New York Times - Bernard Holland
Next to Franck’s dark, gothic moods the two concertos here glide by handsomely.... Mr. Thibaudet’s sense and sensibility again make the case for this music.... This is a valuable recording.
Gramophone - Bryce Morrison
This scintillating disc finds Jean-Yves Thibaudet in notably effervescent form, revelling in Saint-Saëns’s pianistic brio and intricacy.
BBC Music Magazine - Roger Nichols
Tremendous performances, technically and artistically.
The Guardian - Andrew Clements
For the Saint-Saëns concertos [Thibaudet] has the knack of conveying clarity and brilliance without seeming over-flashy, and of bringing expressive elegance to the music without ever becoming sentimental.
Daily Telegraph - Matthew Rye
Thibaudet contributes his trademark combination of stylishness and tonal finesse, particularly in the orient-inspired central movement of the Egyptian, and he exploits the Bachian elements in the Second with panache.

This scintillating disc finds Jean-Yves Thibaudet in notably effervescent form, revelling in Saint-Saëns’s pianistic brio and intricacy.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 10/2/2007
  • Label: Decca
  • UPC: 028947587644
  • Catalog Number: 000974402
  • Sales rank: 55,623

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1–3 Piano Concerto No. 5 ("Egyptian"), in F major, Op. 103 - Camille Saint-Saëns & Charles Dutoit (27:12)
    Composed byCamille Saint-Saëns
    Conducted byCharles Dutoit
    Performed byCharles Dutoit, L'Orchestre de la Suisse Romande
    1. 1 Allegro animato
    2. 2 Andante
    3. 3 Molto allegro
  2. 4 Symphonic Variations, for piano & orchestra (also arr. for 2 pianos), M. 46 - César Franck & Charles Dutoit (15:52)
    Composed byCésar Franck
    Conducted byCharles Dutoit
    Performed byCharles Dutoit, L'Orchestre de la Suisse Romande
  3. 5–7 Piano Concerto No. 2 in G minor, Op. 22 - Camille Saint-Saëns & Charles Dutoit (23:17)
    Composed byCamille Saint-Saëns
    Conducted byCharles Dutoit
    Performed byCharles Dutoit, L'Orchestre de la Suisse Romande
    1. 5 Andante sostenuto
    2. 6 Allegro scherzando
    3. 7 Presto
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Jean-Yves Thibaudet Primary Artist
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