Felix Mendelssohn Piano Concerto #3 In E Minor
Robert | Newark, DE United States | 02/17/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a must-have for any serious Mendelssohn lover. This 2-movement concerto pulsates with vigor, verve and passion. It is quite unlike Mendelssohn's 1st and 2nd (1831 and 1837 respectively), which are brilliant bravura pieces. This final concerto is altogether more somber, more wistful, and more satisfying.
The two themes, in and of themselves are squarish and not some of Mendelssohn's happier inspirations. But, his treatment of them is masterful. The orchestration has fewer unique moments, which I attribute to the incomplete nature of the manuscripts. But, there are lovely uses of pizzicato strings, and also very lush portions that sound more of the later Romantics. And finally, the last 90 seconds of the first movement are ravishing. For those who have found Felix heartless, or then again, too cloying, listen. It is gorgeous, heartfelt, heartbreaking music of the highest order.
The second movement is a swaying, wistful, conclusion to this concerto. It seems less overtly sentimental than the first two concerti and more nostalgic. It is likewise delightful to hear.
Robert Schumann's Konzertsatz is lively if somewhat shapeless, but it features a bold, energetic conclusion.
Clara Schumann's Sonate in G minor derives straight from Beethoven in its first two movements. Her final two movements are much better. The scherzo is engaging and harmonically interesting; the rondo is strong and compelling as was this noble artiste.
'Das Jahr' of Felix Mendelssohn's older sister Fanny Hensel is a wonderful gem of solo piano work-arguably better than much of Felix's solo output. There are vigorous rhythms, beautiful harmonies, and interesting themes throughout. 'September' is an especially lovely selection."