Erik North | San Gabriel, CA USA | 03/30/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Flush with a tradition of bringing the best out of rare works from the best-known composers in the world, the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and its current music director Neeme Jarvi turn to two rarely heard works by Sergei Rachmaninoff, plus the composer's far better-known "Vocalise."The "Concerto Elegiaque" is a tremendously inventive expansion of the composer's 1894 chamber work "Trio Elegiaque" (composed to honor his mentor Tchaikovsky) into a full-blown piano concerto in D Minor. The Australian pianist Alan Kogosowski's brilliant orchestration of the piece (in the tradition of Rachmaninoff's four official piano concertos) is brilliantly performed by the Detroit Symphony under Jarvi's incisive direction; and Kogosowski himself proves to be an excellent pianist--maybe not on the level of great ones like Krystian Zimmerman or Artur Rubinstein, but an excellent one all the same.Written while he was on vacation in France in 1931, the composer's "Variations On A Theme Of Corelli", like Brahms' celebrated "Haydn Variations", has had the authenticity of its theme questioned (no one can really be sure that the theme used, "La Folia", is an actual Corelli piece). Still, this excellent and extremely rare piano piece, thanks to the Rumanian conductor Corneliu Dumbraveanu, has been transcribed brilliantly for orchestra, and is performed brilliantly by the DSO. This CD ends with Rachmaninoff's short but poignant "Vocalise", scored for small orchestra and considered to be a miniature masterpiece.Jarvi has continued the tradition of excellence and diversity that were the hallmarks of the Detroit Symphony under his illustrious predecessors Paul Paray (from 1951 to 1963) and Antal Dorati (from 1977 to 1988). These reconstructions of rare Rachmaninoff pieces and the popular "Vocalise" are proof that this quality has continued to make the Detroit Symphony one of America's finest orchestras."
Rach's 5th Piano Concerto
Arthur L. Hellyer | Oswego, IL United States | 11/16/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Rachmaninov's Opus 9 "Eligiac Trio" is stunningly gorgeous in the hands of even just an average piano trio, but it is exquisite as a concerto. If you have ever wished that old Sergei had written another piano concerto, this one is for you."