Aureole etc.

Golden Age singers

Nimbus on-line

Faure songs
Charlotte de Rothschild (soprano);

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett


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Charles Villiers STANFORD (1852-1924)
Piano Concerto No. 2 in C minor Op. 126 (1911) [38.55]
Robert SCHUMANN (1810-1856)

Introduction and Allegro Appassionato (Konzertstück) Op. 92 (1849) [14.54]
Andreas Jetter (piano)
Rostov Philharmonic Orchestra/Dmitri Vassiliev (Stanford)
Russian Federation Symphony Orchestra Moscow/Dietrich Schöller-Manno
rec. 27-28 April 2002, Rostov State Philharmonic Hall (Stanford); 19-20 May 2001, Moscow Broadcast Station Studio 5 (Schumann)
ANTES EDITION BM-CD 31.9186 [54.11]


Bella Musica Edition
D-77815 Bühl, Baden, Germany

If Antes Edition keep this up we are going to have to watch this German company even more closely than usual. Who would have thought that they would have given us the third commercial recording of Stanford's ambitious Second Piano Concerto … and this with a young South German pianist and a Rostov orchestra?

The Stanford stands between Brahms and Rachmaninov - closer to Johannes than Sergei. The writing is memorable and the defiant ‘call to arms’ at the start of the work threads its way through the big allegro moderato first movement. Jetter has delicacy as well as fireworks at his beck and call. His playing of the andante musing at 12.18 (tr.1) amply demonstrates this. The concerto is certainly not a work that lacks substance. Ambition is one thing but Stanford consummates his aims here as well and does so with unwavering confidence. Orchestral execution is respectable though the brass sounds rather tentative right at the start. The strings in the finale also tend to sound wiry (tr.3 2.03). Jetter is well matched to the challenge of this grand concerto which deserves at least to stand in the company of the Tchaikovsky Second Concerto. The Schumann is given a poetic reading bringing out the work's Mendelssohnian qualities but the centre of interest is bound to be the Stanford.

There is competition for the Stanford. The Lyrita recording from 1982 is splendidly emphatic and sonically affluent without slurring detail. Binns, reprising his 1970s BBC Northern broadcast (then with Raymond Leppard) is more deliberate although his timings are not far away from Jetter's. If you want a marginally more headstrong and exciting approach then Jetter is for you though if you like this work you will want both versions as well as the Fingerhut recording on Chandos. I have not heard the Fingerhut but it is likely to be well worth hearing going by her Chandos recordings of the Bax Winter Legends and Symphonic Variations. The Lyrita (SRCD 219), which is usefully coupled with all the Stanford items from the Lyrita shelves (Irish Rhapsody No. 4 and Funeral March from Becket), can be had from Harold Moores in London.

Rob Barnett

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