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24.2.05

New Disc from Hélène Grimaud

Available from Amazon:
Available at Amazon
Chopin, Sonata, op. 35; Berceuse, op. 57; Barcarolle, op. 60; and Rachmaninov, Sonata, op. 36, Hélène Grimaud, piano
Maurizio Pollini is an inspiration at the piano (see how we reacted at Ionarts to his recital this past fall), and nowhere is that inspiration more productive than with fellow pianists. According to an article (Hélène Grimaud rejoue Chopin, February 22) by Marie-Aude Roux for Le Monde, French pianist Hélène Grimaud decided it was time to return to recording Chopin, after more than 15 years, when she heard Pollini playing a recital in Japan: "The urgency with which he performed Chopin's second sonata," she said, "his poignant and singing playing has revived the flame in me." (He played that sonata at his recital here in Washington, too.) Here's an excerpt of what else Mme. Roux had to say (my translation):
That flame is certainly one of ardent rigor, which animates Grimaud's playing throughout the entire first movement, with an equality of touch and an admirable polyphonic clarity, no less than the veiled sunlight way she develops a drama secretly inhabited by shadow and light. We love this intensity without hardness, the elastic and profound playing of the Scherzo with strong bass notes à la Schumann. The famous Marche funèbre advances in half-colors to the ringing of inexorable bells, before the central melody of pure creaminess, before the Finale somewhere between being veiled and a rhapsody exploding like a final panic. Hélène Grimaud says that Rachmaninov's second sonata goes "marvelously well" with Chopin's. In fact, it strikes the listener like a prolongation of the Chopin finale and its development in time.
The CD will be released in the United States on March 8, but it is already available in Europe.

UPDATE:
M. S. Smith, blogging at CultureSpace, has a review of Hélène Grimaud's concert with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and some thoughts on her new album.

1 comment:

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