Pollini & Abbado: The Complete Deutsche Grammophon Recordings
This 2016 box set from Deutsche Grammophon comprises the recordings Maurizio Pollini and Claudio Abbado made together between 1973 and 1997. They began collaborating in the 1960s, and their live concerts and studio work yielded a complete cycle of Ludwig van Beethoven's piano concertos and the "Choral Fantasy," the two piano concertos of Johannes Brahms, Béla Bartók's first and second piano concertos, and piano concertos by Robert Schumann and Arnold Schoenberg, as well as Luigi Nono's "Como una ola de fuerza y luz." For a body of work spanning nearly three decades and involving four orchestras -- the Berlin Philharmonic, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, and the Vienna Philharmonic -- the level of playing and the sound quality are consistently high, though there is some variance due to the different venues, and the mix of ADD and DDD recordings. This set is highly recommended for fans of these distinguished musicians, and it is also a great bargain for anyone starting to build a classical library.