Georges Enescu

Started by david johnson, February 15, 2008, 03:16:05 PM

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Karl Henning

Quote from: Spotted Horses on July 24, 2021, 02:41:25 PM
I read in the linear notes of some CD or another that Enescu assigned numbers to works he never wrote down, but had in his mind.

Thanks.
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Mirror Image

Enescu's opus numbering is kind of confusing like, for example, he numbers the Cello Sonatas Nos. 1 & 2 both as Op. 26, but designated like this: Op. 26/1 and Op. 26/2 and these works are roughly 40 yrs. apart. :-\ Anyway, I prefer late Enescu to early, but there's still some good stuff in the earlier part of his compositional career.

bhodges

Coming up, this interesting-looking concert with Ensemble Raro, in a celebration of Romania, with two Enescu items that look intriguing. I don't know the Sérénade lointaine at all, and the arrangement of the Rhapsody looks worth hearing (along with the rest of the program). And yes, the violinist is the founder of the Sitkovetsky Trio.

2 December 2021
Weill Recital Hall
Ensemble Raro

ENESCU Sérénade lointaine
FAURÉ Piano Quartet No. 1 in C Minor, Op. 15
ENESCU Romanian Rhapsody No. 1 in A Major, Op. 11 (arr. for piano quartet by Thomas Wally)
DVOŘÁK Piano Quartet in E-flat Major, Op. 87

Ensemble Raro
··Alexander Sitkovetsky, Violin
··Razvan Popovici, Viola
··Justus Grimm, Cello
··Diana Ketler, Piano

https://www.carnegiehall.org/Calendar/2021/12/02/15-Years-of-SONORO-Festival-On-the-Occasion-of-the-National-Day-of-Romania-0800PM

--Bruce

SonicMan46

Well, a NEW Enescu recording to contemplate -  8)

Violin Concerto w/ Carolin Widmann, and Phantasy for Piano & Orchestra w/ Luiza Borac; NDR Radiophilharmonie, Peter Ruzicka - being offered at PrestoMusic and JPC - looking forward to comments and reviews - have not added a CD to my collection in a while -  ;D  Dave

SonicMan46

Piano Works - Luiza Borac vs. Raluca Stirbat - last two days I've been listening to George's piano music - I own the 3 discs w/ Borac (probably a dozen years+ now) - a newer 3-disc set w/ Raluca Stirbat, both Romanian pianists, is one of the main competitors, who I've been streaming on Spotify - left several posts in the 'listening thread' w/ a reviews attachment that might be worth putting here.  Dave :)

QuoteEnescu, George - Piano Music w/ Raluca Stirbat on Spotify - in my collection are the 3 discs w/ Luiza Borac - comparisons from a post quoted below yesterday - have been streaming Stirbat's recordings and also enjoying - she offers 30 more minutes - believe that I like Borac better (because of some of the comments in the attached reviews), but a CLOSE call for me - don't believe I need both recordings so will stay w/ Borac; however, for those interested in one or more, look at the reviews and try to sample some of the works, like the suites and/or sonatas.  Dave :)

Quote from: SonicMan46 on January 23, 2022, 10:13:33 AM
Enescu, George (1881-1955) - Piano Works w/ Luiza Borac on 3 CDs coming in at 172+ minutes and not including some of the earlier pieces - her main competition is the 3-disc box with Raluca Stirbat (last image below), which indeed is 'complete' at 201+ mins of music - both are Romanian pianists steeped in Enescu's national sound world - attached are multiple reviews of both recordings; I've not heard Stirbat so cannot make comparisons, but the commentators have done so - after reading the reviews, both pianists seem to be 'neck to neck' and a purchase decision may be based more on availability, pricing, wanting all the piano music, and the subtleties of interpretation between the performers. Stirbat is available on Spotify, so I'll take a listen soon.  Dave :)

     

Mirror Image

Quote from: SonicMan46 on January 24, 2022, 07:27:58 AM
Piano Works - Luiza Borac vs. Raluca Stirbat - last two days I've been listening to George's piano music - I own the 3 discs w/ Borac (probably a dozen years+ now) - a newer 3-disc set w/ Raluca Stirbat, both Romanian pianists, is one of the main competitors, who I've been streaming on Spotify - left several posts in the 'listening thread' w/ a reviews attachment that might be worth putting here.  Dave :)

In the Enescu solo piano sweepstakes, Borac came out ahead for me, Dave. Her recordings were the ones I decided to rip to my HDD hard drive. Stirbat is excellent, too, of course but Borac has little special magic in her fingers for me.

SonicMan46

Quote from: Mirror Image on January 24, 2022, 07:40:12 AM
In the Enescu solo piano sweepstakes, Borac came out ahead for me, Dave. Her recordings were the ones I decided to rip to my HDD hard drive. Stirbat is excellent, too, of course but Borac has little special magic in her fingers for me.

Hi John - I certainly agree - her touch is gentler and I prefer her 'dynamics' to Stirbat, but either performances are excellent.  Dave :)

Spotted Horses

Quote from: Mirror Image on January 24, 2022, 07:40:12 AM
In the Enescu solo piano sweepstakes, Borac came out ahead for me, Dave. Her recordings were the ones I decided to rip to my HDD hard drive. Stirbat is excellent, too, of course but Borac has little special magic in her fingers for me.

It is truly a mystery. The hard drive space require to store 1 CD costs less than 1 cent. Why don't you get a bigger hard drive so you can rip all of your CDs to disk?
There are simply two kinds of music, good music and the other kind. - Duke Ellington

Mirror Image

#168
Quote from: Spotted Horses on January 24, 2022, 08:00:59 AM
It is truly a mystery. The hard drive space require to store 1 CD costs less than 1 cent. Why don't you get a bigger hard drive so you can rip all of your CDs to disk?

Sorry, I meant to write my SDD external drive. :) Mystery solved. ;)

P.S. I'm definitely not going to rip all of my CD collection. Completely unnecessary. I prefer to cherry pick from my collection, which is more sensible to me.

ritter

#169
Quote from: SonicMan46 on January 24, 2022, 07:27:58 AM
Piano Works - Luiza Borac vs. Raluca Stirbat - last two days I've been listening to George's piano music - I own the 3 discs w/ Borac (probably a dozen years+ now) - a newer 3-disc set w/ Raluca Stirbat, both Romanian pianists, is one of the main competitors, who I've been streaming on Spotify - left several posts in the 'listening thread' w/ a reviews attachment that might be worth putting here.  Dave :)

I've been following your posts on this topic in the WAYLTN with interest, Dave. Thanks!

I do not have the Borac cycle, only Stirbat and the much earlier Christian Petrescu on Accord (OOP now, I think), and am perfectly content with them (complemented by some recordings of single works).

Just one comment: it's true that Stirbat includes more music, but a good chunk of his "extras" is the Sonatensatz in F sharp major, which is nothing more that an original version of the first movement of First Sonata. Interesting for the completist, but hardly essential.

EDIT: I see that the Sonatensatz issue is mentioned in one of the reviews.

SonicMan46

Quote from: ritter on January 24, 2022, 11:44:31 AM
I've been following your posts on this topic in the WAYLTN with interest, Dave. Thanks!

I do not have the Borac cycle, only Stirbat and the much earlier Christian Petrescu on Accord (OOP now, I think), and am perfectly content with them (complemented by some recordings of single works).

Just one comment: it's true that Stirbat includes more music, but a good chunk of his "extras" is the Sonatensatz in F sharp major, which is nothing more that an original version of the first movement of First Sonata. Interesting for the completist, but hardly essential.

EDIT: I see that the Sonatensatz issue is mentioned in one of the reviews.

Hi Rafael - thanks for the additional information!  8)  This morning I listened to all of Stirbat on Spotify (ported via my Apple TV optically to my 2-channel stereo, so good sound) and enjoyed - one set of these performances is fine w/ me and if I had her set then I would be happy - I'll just keep my $$ and wait for that Enescu recording of the piano/violin concertos on CPO to appear soon -  ;D  Dave

Spotted Horses

Quote from: Mirror Image on January 24, 2022, 08:09:55 AM
Sorry, I meant to write my SDD external drive. :) Mystery solved. ;)

P.S. I'm definitely not going to rip all of my CD collection. Completely unnecessary. I prefer to cherry pick from my collection, which is more sensible to me.

To each his own, I've ripped essentially my entire collection (still finishing up a few stragglers in the "why did I buy that" category.). Makes life easier, in that if I am looking or a recording I only have to search my hard disc, and not a bunch of boxes in the garage.
There are simply two kinds of music, good music and the other kind. - Duke Ellington

Mirror Image

Quote from: Spotted Horses on January 24, 2022, 06:03:46 PM
To each his own, I've ripped essentially my entire collection (still finishing up a few stragglers in the "why did I buy that" category.). Makes life easier, in that if I am looking or a recording I only have to search my hard disc, and not a bunch of boxes in the garage.

Well, I'm merely doing it out of convenience, but the reality is I still love my stereo and I love listening through a good pair of speakers, but this simply isn't an option at night-time, which is when I do a bulk of my listening. So this is why I've ripped so much and how I became a headphone listener.

Spotted Horses

Quote from: Mirror Image on January 24, 2022, 09:01:17 PM
Well, I'm merely doing it out of convenience, but the reality is I still love my stereo and I love listening through a good pair of speakers, but this simply isn't an option at night-time, which is when I do a bulk of my listening. So this is why I've ripped so much and how I became a headphone listener.

In my case whether I play a CD or stream audio from my computer it goes through the same playback equipment and sounds identical (the CD player has digital inputs which accepts losslessly encoded streaming data from the computer). I use the same amplifier to drive either headphones or speakers. These days it is streaming from the computer 99% of the time and headphones 99% of the time.

Back to Enescu, a shame he didn't write more music.
There are simply two kinds of music, good music and the other kind. - Duke Ellington

Florestan

I think the most complete set of Enescu's piano music is this.



I have it but didn't listen yet.
When I'm creating at the piano, I tend to feel happy; but - the eternal dilemma - how can we be happy amid the unhappiness of others? I'd do everything I could to give everyone a moment of happiness. That's what's at the heart of my music. — Nino Rota

Scion7

that's a whopping big box! NAXOS's subsidiary is getting quite a catalogue now.

On another note, although critically the second is the more praised, I've listened to both piano quintets at least 40 times each over the past few years, and I still find Nr. 1 the more enjoyable.  There seems to be a joy in that work that makes it spring along quite nicely.
When, a few months before his death, Rachmaninov lamented that he no longer had the "strength and fire" to compose, friends reminded him of the Symphonic Dances, so charged with fire and strength. "Yes," he admitted. "I don't know how that happened. That was probably my last flicker."

kyjo

#176
Recently was revisiting the masterful Third Symphony (1916-18) in a magisterial performance by the LPO under V. Jurowski from this wonderfully eclectic set (featuring primarily rare repertoire!):



If there ever was a piece to earn the description "visionary", this would be it! Apparently, some critics have referred to the symphony as a "Dantesque trilogy" with each movement portraying Purgatory (Earth), Inferno, and Paradise, which I find very apt. The harmonic language teeters on the edge of the late-romantic abyss - sometimes sumptuously chromatic in a rather Straussian manner, and at other times quite modern and almost atonal (especially in the central scherzo). That central scherzo is one hell of a movement - it's not often when the scherzo carries the dramatic focal point of the symphony (I'm thinking also of Elgar's 2nd?). Its central climax is absolutely cataclysmic and harrowing, and at one point the xylophone plays this figure which conjures up an image in my mind of lightning streaking across a dark night sky! For maximum contrast, the slow finale is absolutely angelic and mystical, complete with wordless choir and bells chiming into eternity at the end. Despite the fact that Enescu's thematic material is often rather elusive and not properly "memorable", the atmosphere and drama he creates through his kaleidoscopic orchestration truly is, and for that I don't hesitate in calling this work a masterpiece. And it couldn't possibly receieve a more incandescent, gripping performance than it does here!
"Music is enough for a lifetime, but a lifetime is not enough for music" - Sergei Rachmaninoff

SonicMan46

Well has been a couple of years since my last post here - now up to about 16 CDs of Enescu's works (see attachment) - have been perusing Amazon, Prestomusic, & JPC for anything 'new'?  CPO has released 3 recordings (shown below) of the Violin Concerto/Piano Phantasy and separate discs of late Symphonies Nos. 4/5 (unfinished and WoO numbers; see listing) - reviews have been mixed (see other attachment) but all 3 are on sale for half price at JPC - the violin/piano disc interests me - probably not the others?  Anyone familiar with these new recordings/performances?  Dave :)

QuoteSymphonies with opus numbers
Opus 13: Symphony No. 1 in E♭ major (1905)
Opus 17: Symphony No. 2 in A major (1912–1914)
Opus 21: Symphony No. 3 in C major, with chorus (1916–1918)

Works without opus number
Symphonies

Study Symphony No. 1 in D minor (1895)
Study Symphony No. 2 in F major (1895)
Study Symphony No. 3 in F major (1896)
Study Symphony No. 4 in E flat major (1898)
Symphony No. 4 in E minor (unfinished, 1934; completed by Pascal Bentoiu)
Symphony No. 5 in D major, with choir (unfinished, 1941; completed by Pascal Bentoiu) (Source)



Symphonic Addict

This twofer containing all of his works for cello and piano is tremendously stunning. In fact, I've heard [almost] all of his chamber works and most of them are high-quality stuff.

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