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Piano Concerto no.2 in C minor op.18
Sviatoslav Richter Warsaw National Philharmonic Orchestra Stanislaw Wislocki Vocalise op.34 no.14
Berlin Philharmonic Lorin Maazel
The Bells op.35
Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra Vladimir Ashkenazy
Rhapsody for Piano and Orchestra op.43
Vladimir Ashkenazy London Symphony Orchestra André Previn
Symphony no.2 in E minor op.27
Berlin Philharmonic Lorin Maazel
DG Panorama 469-178-2 157m

Panorama appears to be another melting pot for several labels as this compilation includes recordings from Philips, Decca and DG. Richter's legendary recording of the Second Piano Concerto is indeed a bargain at this price and it is really a wonderful version of this oft recorded work that should sail to the top of the pile of recommendations. The same goes for Ashkenazy's brooding recording of 'The Bells', probably the best available at present, this is indeed vintage Concertegebouw. The second disc is slightly disappointing. I felt that Kovachevich's version of the Rhapsody does not take off in the way other memorable ones such as Katchen and Rubinstein do. And Maazel's cut mid 80's Second Symphony is certainly not the right proposition here, indeed Previn's superbly structured EMI recording remains the benchmark recording for this sadly abused symphony. A mixed bag then, but worth investigating especially for the Richter 2nd Concerto.

Gerald Fenech

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