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Schumann: Piano Quintet, Fantasiestücke, etc.
     

Schumann: Piano Quintet, Fantasiestücke, etc.

by Martha Argerich
 
This 1994 concert of Schumann chamber music, a reissue of portions of a discontinued EMI two-disc set, finds pianist Martha Argerich complemented by several musical friends (including violist Nobuko Imai, cellist Natalia Gutman, and longtime collaborator

Overview

This 1994 concert of Schumann chamber music, a reissue of portions of a discontinued EMI two-disc set, finds pianist Martha Argerich complemented by several musical friends (including violist Nobuko Imai, cellist Natalia Gutman, and longtime collaborator Mischa Maisky, among others) playing, as the liner notes have it, with "the enthusiasm and intimate inspiration of a family house party." Certainly, the performance of Schumann's Piano Quintet, Op. 44, the main attraction, is as explosive and hot-tempered as one would expect from Argerich and company. The forte chords at the outset, for instance, sound less like an opening salvo than a barrage of exclamation points -- this is the gutsy Argerich we all know and love. Still, the players unfold Schumann's familiar Quintet with extraordinary eloquence and transparency. The Andante and Variations, Op. 46, follows -- a rarity of considerable charm for the unconventional combination of two pianos, two cellos, and horn. We're back on familiar ground with the three "Fantasiestücke," Op. 73, which Gutman and Argerich play in the alternate cello and piano version in a beautifully airy and sensitive reading. The "Märchenbilder," Op. 113, comes in the original instrumentation, however, with violist Imai joining Argerich. The sound is clear and generally well balanced, with the enthusiastic applause serving to remind us (along with the marvelous spontaneity of the performances) that this was no cut-and-splice studio session.

Editorial Reviews

Gramophone - Bryce Morrison
Argerich...rejoices in every facet of Schumann's tireless fantasy and inventiveness. Greatest of all living pianists and a figure unique in the history of piano playing, Argerich has rarely sounded more radiant and less fraught, inspiring her partners to an ultimate eloquence and vivacity.

Product Details

Release Date:
06/04/2002
Label:
Warner Classics
UPC:
0724355730824
catalogNumber:
57308

Related Subjects

Tracks

  1. Piano Quintet in E flat major, Op. 44
  2. Andante & Variations for 2 pianos, 2 cellos & horn in B flat major, WoO 10 (original version of Op. 46)
  3. Phantasiestücke (3 Fantasy Pieces) for clarinet (or cello or violin) & piano, Op. 73
  4. Märchenbilder for viola (or violin) & piano, Op. 113

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