Author Topic: Late Brahms Piano Works -- that's Ops 116 - 119 mainly.  (Read 26066 times)

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Offline Mandryka

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Re: Late Brahms Piano Works -- that's Ops 116 - 119 mainly.
« Reply #120 on: February 25, 2016, 08:11:08 AM »

 Rittner, whose Brahms (in general) is vigourous and youthful, passionate, but maybe too fireworksy for some. Their instruments sound very different as well.



Yes that ties in with my impression of Rittner in op 76/79. How did you get to hear his op 116 - 119 - is it up for streaming somewhere?
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Offline amw

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Re: Late Brahms Piano Works -- that's Ops 116 - 119 mainly.
« Reply #121 on: February 25, 2016, 02:39:46 PM »
Yes that ties in with my impression of Rittner in op 76/79. How did you get to hear his op 116 - 119 - is it up for streaming somewhere?
No, I paid for it some time ago (probably whenever Qobuz had an offer on MDG). It probably can be acquired through free channels of questionable legality as well; the label doesn't grant any permissions for streaming that I know of, and they seem to get pirated a lot. Correlation/causation >.>

It was worth the €9 or whatever, though.
« Last Edit: February 25, 2016, 02:45:30 PM by amw »

Online George

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Re: Late Brahms Piano Works -- that's Ops 116 - 119 mainly.
« Reply #122 on: March 14, 2016, 09:17:36 AM »
What do folks think of Angelich's late Brahms?
"I can't live without music, because music is life." - Yvonne Lefébure

Offline Mandryka

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Re: Late Brahms Piano Works -- that's Ops 116 - 119 mainly.
« Reply #123 on: March 14, 2016, 09:32:40 AM »
What do folks think of Angelich's late Brahms?

Not so special.
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Online George

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Re: Late Brahms Piano Works -- that's Ops 116 - 119 mainly.
« Reply #124 on: October 25, 2017, 03:54:52 PM »


Today I decided to compare the first movement of some of my recordings of Op. 116, specifically Kovacevich, Angelich and the above Rudy set. The Kovacevich was powerful and impressive, he played the first movement like a panther, but I wasn't in the mood tonight for that kind of playing. Also, he sounded a little young for late Brahms. The Angelich was played in a similar manner, so I then tried Rudy and found it much more to my taste, as the playing was somewhat more laid back. I listened to Rudy's entire Op. 116 and really enjoyed it. The piano sound sparkled, the slow movements were played with great tenderness and intimacy. I suppose I shouldn't have been surprised, as I has originally bought this set because I have admired a number of Rudy's other recordings. I rate Rudy's Rachmaninoff Piano Concertos with Jansons quite highly, in fact, I feel his EMI set is the best complete set, for performance and sound. So now I plan to listen to more of the above set in the coming days and hope to enjoy his Op. 117-119 as much as his Op. 116.
"I can't live without music, because music is life." - Yvonne Lefébure

Online George

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Re: Late Brahms Piano Works -- that's Ops 116 - 119 mainly.
« Reply #125 on: October 27, 2017, 04:09:36 PM »
Just to follow up, although I have certainly heard better, I enjoyed Rudy's Op. 117 somewhat, but the more extroverted works in Op. 118 were played too over the top for me. He plays them like a virtuoso in a large concert hall, and for me, that style doesn't fit here.

I think I will revisit Gieseking's 1951 recordings, Angelich's Virgin recordings and Lupu's Decca Brahms (along with his Schubert) recordings next.
"I can't live without music, because music is life." - Yvonne Lefébure

Offline Todd

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Re: Late Brahms Piano Works -- that's Ops 116 - 119 mainly.
« Reply #126 on: October 27, 2017, 04:25:39 PM »
Just to follow up, although I have certainly heard better, I enjoyed Rudy's Op. 117 somewhat, but the more extroverted works in Op. 118 were played too over the top for me. He plays them like a virtuoso in a large concert hall, and for me, that style doesn't fit here.


Rudy generally doesn't get enough love.  I'm hoping Warner does a big box at some point.
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Offline Oldnslow

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Re: Late Brahms Piano Works -- that's Ops 116 - 119 mainly.
« Reply #127 on: October 30, 2017, 12:10:11 PM »
Rudy's Janacek and Liszt are also very fine. An excellent pianist, and still active in Europe I believe

Offline San Antone

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Re: Late Brahms Piano Works -- that's Ops 116 - 119 mainly.
« Reply #128 on: October 30, 2017, 12:43:45 PM »
Rudy's Janacek and Liszt are also very fine. An excellent pianist, and still active in Europe I believe

Yes, I was going to mention his excellent recording of the Liszt Sonata in B Minor.

Offline Elk

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Re: Late Brahms Piano Works -- that's Ops 116 - 119 mainly.
« Reply #129 on: November 05, 2017, 04:40:16 AM »
This may be my 1st post. I do not have the extensive collections that many of you have, but these pieces, as well as other late Brahms'works, are among my favourites (I'm Canadian; hence, the British spelling).

My next door neighbour studied to be a concert pianist and performed at the Warsaw Chopin Competition. I invite her over sometimes to listen blind to different piano interpretations, Like the time we listened to Richter's WTC, the Melodya and RCA releases. She listens blind, not knowing what is coming or who is playing. On this particular occasion, we both preferred the LP, surface noise and all, to the RCA CD because the engineers of the CD had not only reduced the tape hiss, but also the 'air' of the concert venue, but that is another story...

I have Gilels' Op. 116, Grimaud's Erato, both of Kocacevich's forays, Lupu's, Angelich's, and lastly Alexeev's. One night we listened to but one intermezzo. She gave her impressions first, and we both agreed that Alexeev swept the field, not only with his interpretation, which seemed to reach the very heart of the music, but also with the recorded sound, which while analogue, made the piano sound tangibly in the room, with wonderful bass extension (not bloated like the Lupu).

While satisfied with the Alexeev, you all have made me want to expand my collection in the usual search for more perfection. I thank you.

Online George

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Re: Late Brahms Piano Works -- that's Ops 116 - 119 mainly.
« Reply #130 on: November 05, 2017, 07:35:47 AM »
This may be my 1st post. I do not have the extensive collections that many of you have, but these pieces, as well as other late Brahms'works, are among my favourites (I'm Canadian; hence, the British spelling).

My next door neighbour studied to be a concert pianist and performed at the Warsaw Chopin Competition. I invite her over sometimes to listen blind to different piano interpretations, Like the time we listened to Richter's WTC, the Melodya and RCA releases. She listens blind, not knowing what is coming or who is playing. On this particular occasion, we both preferred the LP, surface noise and all, to the RCA CD because the engineers of the CD had not only reduced the tape hiss, but also the 'air' of the concert venue, but that is another story...

I have Gilels' Op. 116, Grimaud's Erato, both of Kocacevich's forays, Lupu's, Angelich's, and lastly Alexeev's. One night we listened to but one intermezzo. She gave her impressions first, and we both agreed that Alexeev swept the field, not only with his interpretation, which seemed to reach the very heart of the music, but also with the recorded sound, which while analogue, made the piano sound tangibly in the room, with wonderful bass extension (not bloated like the Lupu).

While satisfied with the Alexeev, you all have made me want to expand my collection in the usual search for more perfection. I thank you.

Welcome to the forum!

And thanks for the reminder about Alexeev.
"I can't live without music, because music is life." - Yvonne Lefébure

Offline Mandryka

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Re: Late Brahms Piano Works -- that's Ops 116 - 119 mainly.
« Reply #131 on: April 16, 2018, 03:35:47 AM »


Volodos can play piano very well, his control of dynamics especially is impressive. Tempos are slow and the mood is reflective. It's well recorded.

Sometimes Volodos indulges himself and his listeners by letting a note ring out a little longer than expected, so that we can savour just how beautiful it is.   Is he being narcissistic?

In addition to the beautiful purified coherent resounding modern piano sound, there's passion too. So what's not to like?

I'll tell you what's not to like - Volodos plays late Brahms as if it's music for grandad. You can imagine Granma squirming with pleasure at the beauty of it all. There's no youth, no anger, nothing threatening. It's romantic, it's consoling. Like hollandaise sauce without the lemon juice, it's rich.

« Last Edit: April 16, 2018, 03:38:53 AM by Mandryka »
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Offline amw

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Re: Late Brahms Piano Works -- that's Ops 116 - 119 mainly.
« Reply #132 on: April 16, 2018, 04:10:04 AM »
Most of the reason I listen to that recording is for the sheer pleasure of hearing perfect piano technique and a level of tonal command that historic recordings can't reproduce; a bit like listening to Lhevinne in modern sound. I find he has a coherent vision for the Op.117 and Op.118 pieces and treats each opus as a cycle, which is often hard to bring out. Are there interpretations I like better? Probably, but the piano playing always sounds crude and unrefined by comparison, even from the likes of Lupu or Sokolov.

Offline Mandryka

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Re: Late Brahms Piano Works -- that's Ops 116 - 119 mainly.
« Reply #133 on: April 16, 2018, 04:26:01 AM »
Most of the reason I listen to that recording is for the sheer pleasure of hearing perfect piano technique and a level of tonal command that historic recordings can't reproduce; a bit like listening to Lhevinne in modern sound. I find he has a coherent vision for the Op.117 and Op.118 pieces and treats each opus as a cycle, which is often hard to bring out. Are there interpretations I like better? Probably, but the piano playing always sounds crude and unrefined by comparison, even from the likes of Lupu or Sokolov.

Yes, I can imagine you're right about this, and it is really very delicious.
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Offline Mandryka

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Re: Late Brahms Piano Works -- that's Ops 116 - 119 mainly.
« Reply #134 on: April 17, 2018, 08:00:25 PM »


A Handel Variations from Christopher Park, quite transparent piano sound, which is all to the good because part of Park's shtick is to do with voicing - he makes this music sound more like a cheerful study in polyphony than I had recalled. This is a most congenial Handel Variations - Park plays with a twinkle in his eye, a jolly happy smile always. This made me feel that he brings two things  to the music which are nice to hear once in a while: irony and lightness. Or maybe it's just my mood when I listened . . . who knows?
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