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Great Pianists 9
Daniel Barenboim, Mozart, Beethoven
Great Pianists 9
Genre: Classical
 
  •  Track Listings (6) - Disc #1
  •  Track Listings (7) - Disc #2


      
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CD Details

All Artists: Daniel Barenboim, Mozart, Beethoven, Liszt
Title: Great Pianists 9
Members Wishing: 1
Total Copies: 0
Label: Decca
Release Date: 9/14/1999
Genre: Classical
Styles: Chamber Music, Forms & Genres, Concertos, Short Forms, Historical Periods, Classical (c.1770-1830), Modern, 20th, & 21st Century
Number of Discs: 2
SwapaCD Credits: 2
UPC: 028945672120
 

CD Reviews

A Great Pianist Before He Became a Major Conductor
Stephen Cera | Toronto, Ontario Canada | 09/19/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)

"So commanding is Daniel Barenboim's fame as a conductor these days, it is easy to forget that he was acclaimed as one of the leading pianist-musicians of his generation almost forty years ago! Certainly his inclusion in the Philips Classics "Great Pianists of the 20th Century" series is justified, but for some reason the producer chose to emphasize Barenboim as a concerto player rather than a solo artist (or chamber musician or Lieder pianist). Yet all these categories have equal claims on our attention, because Barenboim is not simply a superb concerto soloist, he is a consummate ensemble player -- his recordings of Lieder (with artists of the calibre of Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, Dame Janet Baker, Jessye Norman) are some of the finest ever produced. Most of his chamber music recordings with the likes of Jacqueline du Pre (his late wife), Itzhak Perlman, Pinchas Zukerman, Maxim Vengerov, Myron Bloom, Dale Clevenger, et al, are equally distinguished.
This two-disc collection leans heavily on Barenboim's early days as an EMI artist, including one full CD of collaborations with the late Otto Klemperer. Both the Mozart Concerto in C, K. 503, and Beethoven Concerto No. 1, are very fine performances, but there could have been even better choices. Barenboim's later, better-integrated recording of K. 503, in which he conducted the English Chamber Orchestra while playing the solo part, is an improvement on the somewhat elephantine Klemperer performance, while the glories of his Beethoven concerto cycle with Klemperer are a truly galvanic "Emperor" and a magnificent "Choral Fantasy" (arguably the best ever recorded) -- not the Concerto No. 1.
Meanwhile, what of Barenboim the solo player? Surely a sample from one of his two complete Beethoven Sonata sets would have been appropriate, and I would nominate the Sonata in G, Opus 31, No. 1, whose teasing wit, rhythmic dislocations and harmonic "double-entendres" are realized to perfection by Barenboim, with breathtaking naturalness and understanding. It was a good idea to enshrine some of Barenboim's solo Liszt from the early-1980s, but why not more of the Wagner/Liszt transcriptions? Today Barenboim is acclaimed as perhaps the most important living Wagner conductor, so it would have been salutary to include more of his renditions of Liszt's transcriptions of selections from Wagner in addition to "Isoldes Liebestod" -- particularly since his Deutsche Grammophon release of Wagner/Liszt has long been out of the catalogue. It is good to have the Brahms D-minor Concerto with Barbirolli restored to circulation, but as mentioned, the musical balance in this set tips too far in favor of concerto material.
Given that predilection, for something really enterprising Philips might have tried to track down a pirate recording made in Los Angeles in 1971. I was at that performance of Wilhelm Furtwaengler's massive Piano Concerto, in which Barenboim played the titanic solo part with Zubin Mehta conducting the Los Angeles Philharmonic. It was an extraordinary experience -- hopefully, Barenboim will re-record it with the Berlin Philharmonic. And speaking of pirates, there is a live recording (on an Italian label) of Beethoven's Grosse Fuge, played in the composer's own four-hand transcription by Barenboim with Alfred Brendel. That too, would have been a gem for inclusion here (if rights issues could have been resolved).
All cavils aside, this set remains a rewarding and engrossing window into the deepest and most phenomenal musical talent of our time -- an artist whom Radu Lupu has called "a miracle"."
Heavy on Concertos
Stephen Cera | Toronto, Ontario Canada | 10/08/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)

"So central is his position as a major conductor on the global stage today, it is easy to forget that Daniel Barenboim was hailed as one of the leading pianist-musicians of his generation almost forty years ago. Certainly his inclusion in the Philips Classics "Great Pianists of the 20th Century" series is justified, but for some reason the producer chose to emphasize Barenboim as a concerto player rather than a solo artist (let alone chamber musician or Lieder pianist). Yet all these categories have equal claims on our attention, because Barenboim is not simply a great concerto soloist, he is a consummate ensemble player -- his recordings of Lieder (with artists of the calibre of Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, Dame Janet Baker, Jessye Norman) are some of the finest ever produced. Most of his chamber music recordings with the likes of Jacqueline du Pre (his late wife), Itzhak Perlman, Pinchas Zukerman, Maxim Vengerov et al, are equally distinguished.
This two-disc compilation leans heavily on Barenboim's early days as an EMI artist, including one full CD of collaborations with the late Otto Klemperer. Both the Mozart Concerto in C,
K. 503, and Beethoven Concerto No. 1, are very fine performances, but there could have been even better choices. Barenboim's later, more uniformly-integrated recording of
K. 503, in which he conducted the English Chamber Orchestra while playing the solo part, is an improvement on the somewhat elephantine Klemperer performance, while the glories of his Beethoven concerto cycle with Klemperer are a truly galvanic "Emperor" and a magnificent "Choral Fantasy" (arguably the finest ever recorded) -- not the Concerto No. 1.
Meanwhile, what of Barenboim the solo player? Surely a sample from one of his two complete Beethoven Sonata sets would have been appropriate, and I would nominate the Sonata in G, Opus 31, No. 1, whose teasing wit, rhythmic dislocations and harmonic "double-entendres" are realized to perfection by Barenboim, with utter naturalness and understanding. It was a good idea to enshrine some of Barenboim's solo Liszt from the early 1980s, but why not more of the Wagner/Liszt transcriptions? Today Barenboim is acclaimed as perhaps the most important living Wagner conductor, so it would have been salutary to include more of his renditions of Liszt's transcriptions of selections from Wagner in addition to "Isoldes Liebestod" -- particularly since his Deutsche Grammophon release of Wagner/Liszt has long been out of the catalogue. It is good to have the Brahms D-minor Concerto with Barbirolli restored to circulation, but as mentioned, the musical balance in this set tips too far in favor of concerto material.
Those cavils aside, this collection remains a rewarding and engrossing window into the richest musical performing talent of our time, an artist whose abundant gifts have been called "a miracle"."
2 piano concertos on C major
Juan Olvera | Orlando, Florida United States | 03/19/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"On this cd the Beethoven first piano concerto in C major is done excellent. I liked the way it hhas also Mozart's C major concerto. Wagner's List's piece is also good. This is a 5 star cd."