Author Topic: The Italian Invasion  (Read 13751 times)

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Offline zamyrabyrd

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Re: The Italian Invasion
« Reply #80 on: February 12, 2017, 12:48:19 AM »
Beatrice Rana is surely a force to be reckoned with. She was 18 in 2011:

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Offline Todd

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Re: The Italian Invasion
« Reply #81 on: February 12, 2017, 06:27:20 AM »
Have you heard the Beethoven violin sonatas he recorded for DG in Japan? I enjoyed those much more, and I'm not normally much interested in middle period Beethoven.


Not yet, but it's in the queue after I first listen to Oistrakh/Oborin.
« Last Edit: February 12, 2017, 06:31:05 AM by Todd »
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Offline Dancing Divertimentian

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Re: The Italian Invasion
« Reply #82 on: February 19, 2017, 08:07:41 PM »
Beatrice Rana is surely a force to be reckoned with.

A force to be reckoned with for sure. See my post here.

Below is another Rana disc worth mentioning. Here she's partnered with more Italians: the orchestra Santa Cecilia. 

In some quarters Tchaik 1 may be derided as an overexposed warhorse but to me it's just great music. I purposely don't gorge myself on the piece so whenever I do listen to it it always sounds fresh. And here Rana and crew give this piece exactly that: a fresh take.

There's nary a hint - anywhere - of a blasé attitude toward the piece, nothing which spells "why us Lord??". Rather, the concentration and intensity are of the highest order. Obviously everybody involved went in to this project with 100% commitment, including the recording engineers. This is a stunner of a recording.

As far as pianist, for those familiar with Rana's playing there are no surprises here: her big, full sound is complemented by a keen dexterity, overlaying every big phrase with one delicate sub-phrase after another. It's remarkable how few pianists can play with this well-balanced mixture of "big" and "miniature". Of pianists of old the ones that come to mind are Fiorentino and Agustin Anievas, neither of whom recorded much (Anievas far less). (Latterly Cynthia Raim fits the bill but she records even less, still!).

Obviously, though, this is a collaborative affair. Pappano and orchestra walk the tightrope with Rana and hone the give-and-take to the tightest of tolerances. The Santa Cecilia orchestra has a full, rich sound yet it never swallows Rana, not that that would be an easy task anyway with her big sound. But the orchestra, too, is right in league with Rana in that they play "big" yet they don't shut out the finer details, with warmth, color, etc, at the ready. Everybody sounds well rehearsed and energetic with an eagerness which is infectious.

Next up: the Prokofiev.

 


« Last Edit: February 20, 2017, 04:53:22 AM by Dancing Divertimentian »
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Offline Brian

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Re: The Italian Invasion
« Reply #83 on: February 19, 2017, 08:15:34 PM »
Hey Don

APRIL 12-15 | 2018
NICHOLAS MCGEGAN CONDUCTS
BEATRICE RANA PIANO
HAYDN Symphony No. 83, “The Hen”
PROKOFIEV Piano Concerto No. 3
BEETHOVEN Symphony No. 2

Dallas Symphony!

Offline Wanderer

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Re: The Italian Invasion
« Reply #84 on: February 20, 2017, 12:46:48 AM »
Next up: the Prokofiev.

 




That's sensational, too.

Offline Dancing Divertimentian

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Re: The Italian Invasion
« Reply #85 on: February 20, 2017, 04:58:56 AM »
Hey Don

APRIL 12-15 | 2018
NICHOLAS MCGEGAN CONDUCTS
BEATRICE RANA PIANO
HAYDN Symphony No. 83, “The Hen”
PROKOFIEV Piano Concerto No. 3
BEETHOVEN Symphony No. 2

Dallas Symphony!

!!

Hey, Brian. Will send PM tonight!
"I've grown used to this country and I love it. But there's one thing it doesn't have - quiet". Rachmaninoff musing on his hectic schedule in the USA.

Offline Dancing Divertimentian

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Re: The Italian Invasion
« Reply #86 on: February 20, 2017, 04:59:44 AM »
That's sensational, too.

Thanks, good to hear!
"I've grown used to this country and I love it. But there's one thing it doesn't have - quiet". Rachmaninoff musing on his hectic schedule in the USA.

Offline Todd

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Re: The Italian Invasion
« Reply #87 on: February 20, 2017, 08:07:20 AM »



Alessandra Ammara playing Chopin.  The disc opens with a loud left hand note announcing the open of the first Ballade.  (Proper volume took a little bit to arrive at on first listen.)  Ammara's approach is generally big and bold, and she adopts a generally brisk tempo, and throws in rubato that might be considered mannered.  Her dynamic range is good, but none of the playing really sounds gentle, and at times one may long for a bit more lyricism.  There are a few moments where Ammara seems to lack ideal composure, but these moments are rare.  Too, she seems too studied in her approach, and she lacks the tonal and technical flexibility of Seong-Jin Cho to pull it off as successfully.  The Fantasie retains the big, bold approach overall, though it sounds a bit hard and inflexible as a result.  Better is the Barcarolle, which finds Ammara playing with more sensitivity and lyricism, and her rubato works well.  The Op 30 Mazurkas close the disc, and they are a bit overdone from a dynamics and accents standpoint and a bit lacking in rhythmic flexibility, though they are enjoyable enough.  So good, occasionally very good, Chopin, but not a disc to rival established favorites.

Sound is close and weighty and clear, but the piano tone is a bit monochrome and sometimes the upper registers are a bit metallic.
« Last Edit: February 20, 2017, 03:09:31 PM by Todd »
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Online Mandryka

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Re: The Italian Invasion
« Reply #88 on: March 07, 2017, 07:54:18 AM »
Someone recommended a Debussy etudes recording to me yesterday which I've been exploring today - by Mariangela Vacatello.




The vision is totally fresh. Is it immature? I don't know. What I do know is that like Craig Sheppard's recording, it's communicative, and for that reason engrossing.
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Offline Todd

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Re: The Italian Invasion
« Reply #89 on: March 19, 2017, 07:05:36 AM »



I enjoyed Muzio Clementi's symphony set on Sony so much that I felt like trying at least some of his piano music.  As it happens, Pietro De Maria's debut recording was of Clementi's Op 40 sonatas, so picking the right disc was a cinch.  The three somewhat showy sonatas may never plumb the depths of Beethoven's contemporaneous works, but they are eminently entertaining, filled with verve and a sense of fun in the lighter, major key sonatas, and a fine sense of drama in the minor key work.  The young De Maria's playing strikes me as a perfect match.  He glides effortlessly along the keyboard, applying his beautiful touch with great frequency, throwing in some effective rubato, and playing with more than enough energy and strength when needed.  Having heard all but one of his later recordings, he has fulfilled the promise he shows here. 

Sound is near SOTA for the mid-90s, and is notably better than most of Naxos' other offerings from the era that I have heard.  A peach of a disc.

I may explore more of Clementi's piano output.  It sure would be helpful if Warner would reissue Maria Tipo's ten disc set, either on its own or in a big box.
« Last Edit: March 19, 2017, 03:02:29 PM by Todd »
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Offline André

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Re: The Italian Invasion
« Reply #90 on: March 19, 2017, 03:03:00 PM »
My own experience is that I never tire of Clementi. I have the complete sonatas on Arts with Pietro Spada, as well as 2 volumes of Costantino Mastroprimiano's integral set on Brilliant. Both differ in their approach to sound production, style, articulation. I like them both, especially Spada's. I also have a few single discs. Each pianist seems to have a different voice in this repertoire. Possibly because it has not been trudged to death ? They have to find their own technical and interpretive solutions.

Coincidentally, I put this same Pietro di Maria's op 40 in my cart at JPC today ! They sell it for 1.99€, and I love this pianist's Chopin and Bach. That will be my 3rd italian pianist in this repertoire. I guess this is music they relate to.

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Re: The Italian Invasion
« Reply #91 on: March 21, 2017, 10:33:35 PM »
I came across this CD, through my interest in music of the classical era and Cherubini in particular.  Cherubini is best known for his lyric and sacred music output, but he composed also string quartets (see the Cherubini thread) and keyboard music.



Gregorio Nardi plays both the Haydn and the Cherubini beautifully and conveys deep emotions.  I checked his discography.  There are several Liszt CDs, a Schoenberg, a Schumann and more rarely recorded composers.  Well worth checking IMO.
« Last Edit: March 22, 2017, 05:19:26 AM by Spineur »
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Offline Todd

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Re: The Italian Invasion
« Reply #92 on: March 26, 2017, 06:55:32 AM »



This disc marks the first time I can recall that I've heard any of Mendelssohn's Piano Quartets.  The two quartets offered here, plus the world premiere recording of the brief Largo e Allegro in D minor for piano and strings, are the works of the precocious, young Mendelssohn, having been penned when he was between the ages of 11 and 15.  The pieces are not heavy, ponderous, deep explorations of emotion or musical structure or theory.  They are light, quite fun (No 3), and lightly dramatic (No 1) works that flow along nicely, and make for delightful entertainment.  Apparently, the First was even good enough to leave a positive impression on no less a figure than Goethe when he heard it in private performance.  Roberto Prosseda and the string players all do splendid work, and make what sounds like no flubs in this concert recording.  And what a recording.  It was made in a performance size room in Palazzo Chigi, and the room sounds quite sympathetic to chamber ensembles.  There's weight and warmth and a compression effect similar to that audible in Lina Tur Bonet's recording of Biber's Mystery Sonatas.  Good stuff, and sure to lift a listener's, any listener's spirits.

I don't always read liner notes, or pay much attention to them, but I feel compelled to mention the quality and detail of violist Francesco Fiore's writing here.
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