Aureole etc.




Golden Age singers

Nimbus on-line




Faure songs
Charlotte de Rothschild (soprano);

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett


CD REVIEW

Some items
to consider

 


Enjoy the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra wherever you are. App available for iOS and Android

Lyrita 4CDs £16 incl.postage

Lyrita 4CDs £16 incl.postage


Decca Phase 4 - 40CDs


Judith Bailey, George Lloyd


BAX Orchestral pieces


CASKEN Violin Concerto

Schumann Symphonies Rattle


Complete Brahms
Bargain price

 

alternatively
Crotchet

 

Anatol LIADOV (1855–1914)

Variations on a Polish folk theme, op.51 (1901) [11:56]

Marionettes, op. 29 (1892) [5:08]

Three Pieces, op.11 (1886) [8:28]

Two Pieces, op.24 (1890) [6:19]

Three Pieces, op.57 (1900/1905) [5:17]

Little Waltz in G, op.26 (1891) [2:27]

Three Preludes, op.36 (1895) [2:55]

A Musical Snuffbox, op.32 [1:58]

Barcarolle in F sharp, op.44 (1898) [4:15]

Four Pieces, op.64 (1909/1910) [5:08]

Variations on a theme by Glinka, op.35 (1894) [16:08]

Stephen Coombs (piano)

rec. 6-7 May 1997, All Saints, East Finchley, London. DDD

reissue of Hyperion CDA 66986
HYPERION HELIOS CDH55309
[70:35] 

 

Experience Classicsonline


Liadov is remembered as the lazy Russian composer – he was given the commission for a ballet but as he never got round to the laboursome task of actually writing it the commission passed to the young Igor Stravinsky, who created The Firebird, and, as they say, the rest is history. I
n 1870 he went to at the St Petersburg Conservatory to study piano and violin but quickly stopped his instrumental studies and moved on to counterpoint and fugue. Despite many, Mussorgsky included, thinking highly of his work as a composer he was expelled from the composition class of Rimsky-Korsakov for absenteeism, but was re-admited in 1878 to help him finish his graduation composition, a setting of the final scene from Schiller's Die Braut von Messina for solo voices, chorus and orchestra, op.28 (1878, published 1891). He subsequently taught at the St Petersburg Conservatory where his students included Prokofiev and the conductor Nikolai Malko, who wrote, "Lyadov's critical comments were always precise, clear, understandable, constructive, and brief .... And it was done indolently, without haste, sometimes seemingly disdainfully. He could suddenly stop in midword, take out a small scissors from his pocket and start doing something with his fingernail, while we all waited". 

As a composer, Liadov is probably best remembered these days as the composer of colourful and entertaining tone poems – Baba–Yaga, op.56 (1904), The Enchanted Lake, op.62 (1909), and Kikimora, op.63 (1909) as well as the orchestral Eight Russian Folk Songs, op.58 (1906) – all available on a very good Chandos CD, coupled with other works, given by the BBC Philharmonic, conducted by Vasily Sinaisky (CHAN 9911). But what of his other work? There’s no large-scale piece – in fact the two sets of variations on this disk are amongst his biggest pieces – no opera, no ballet (though not for want of trying), no concerto or symphony so his reputation rests entirely on a series of miniatures.

Liadov was said to be a fine pianist so it’s not unusual to find a fair amount of music for piano in his output (about 36 pieces) and what we have here is a fine sampling. The music ranges in style from salon music, to sub-Scriabin in the op.64 pieces. 

Marionettes, Little Waltz and the Musical Snuffbox are all real charmers – delicate sweetmeats for the home – and the Three Pieces, op.11 have much charm in their Chopinesque way, but the second, a toccata, might have proved somewhat difficult for the parlour pianists. 

By the time we reach the Two Pieces op.24, the harmonic language has matured, the textures have become slightly thicker, and, amazingly, there’s even an hint of impressionism – surely a piece of serendipity! The melodic material here is much more memorable, and this strain is continued into the Three Pieces, op.57, whereas the Three Preludes, op.36 are a backward step but fine examples of how to make an impression in the shortest possible timescale – the second is also quite a virtuoso piece. 

The Variations on a theme by Glinka, op.35 is the more conventional of the two sets of Variations presented here. It seems to straddle the salon and the concert hall in its language, but the use of the keyboard places it firmly in the latter place. The Variations on a Polish folk theme, op.51 is based on a mazurka and Liadov’s treatment of his theme is varied and satisfying. There’s a quicksilver scherzo which has a contrasting violent scherzo, and there’s several deeply felt slower variations. The finale starts with bell sounds and ends as an headlong race to the finish line. 

This is very enjoyable music and it’s hard to see why it’s never heard – at worst there’s ample encore material here. Until such time, we must be grateful to Stephen Coombs for lavishing such care on this disk and giving us a reminder of what has been lost in this corner of Russian music. One thing is certain – we must not be as lazy as Liadov when it comes to going out and buying this delightful disk for it’s well worth having.

Bob Briggs

 




 


Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on
Musicweb


Donate and get a free CD

New Releases

Naxos Classical

Hyperion

Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
Alto
Arcodiva
Atoll
CDAccord
Cameo Classics
Centaur
Hallé
Hortus
Lyrita
Nimbus
Northern Flowers
Redcliffe
Sheva
Talent
Toccata Classics


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing
sample
 


EXPLORE MUSICWEB INTERNATIONAL

Making a Donation to MusicWeb

Writing CD reviews for MWI

About MWI
Who we are, where we have come from and how we do it.

Site Map

How to find a review

How to find articles on MusicWeb
Listed in date order

Review Indexes
   By Label
      Select a label and all reviews are listed in Catalogue order
   By Masterwork
            Links from composer names (eg Sibelius) are to resource pages with links to the review indexes for the individual works as well as other resources.

Themed Review pages

Jazz reviews

 

Discographies
   Composer
      Composer surveys
   National
      Unique to MusicWeb -
a comprehensive listing of all LP and CD recordings of given works
.
Prepared by Michael Herman

The Collector’s Guide to Gramophone Company Record Labels 1898 - 1925
Howard Friedman

Book Reviews

Complete Books
We have a number of out of print complete books on-line

Interviews
With Composers, Conductors, Singers, Instumentalists and others
Includes those on the Seen and Heard site

Nostalgia

Nostalgia CD reviews

Records Of The Year
Each reviewer is given the opportunity to select the best of the releases

Monthly Best Buys
Recordings of the Month and Bargains of the Month

Comment
Arthur Butterworth Writes

An occasional column

Phil Scowcroft's Garlands
British Light Music articles

Classical blogs
A listing of Classical Music Blogs external to MusicWeb International

Reviewers Logs
What they have been listening to for pleasure

Announcements

 

Community
Bulletin Board

Give your opinions or seek answers

Reviewers
Pat and present

Helpers invited!

Resources
How Did I Miss That?

Currently suspended but there are a lot there with sound clips


Composer Resources

British Composers

British Light Music Composers

Other composers

Film Music (Archive)
Film Music on the Web (Closed in December 2006)

Programme Notes
For concert organizers

External sites
British Music Society
The BBC Proms
Orchestra Sites
Recording Companies & Retailers
Online Music
Agents & Marketing
Publishers
Other links
Newsgroups
Web News sites etc

PotPourri
A pot-pourri of articles

MW Listening Room
MW Office

Advice to Windows Vista users  
Questionnaire    
Site History  
What they say about us
What we say about us!
Where to get help on the Internet
CD orders By Special Request
Graphics archive
Currency Converter
Dictionary
Magazines
Newsfeed  
Web Ring
Translation Service

Rules for potential reviewers :-)
Do Not Go Here!
April Fools




Return to Review Index

Untitled Document


Reviews from previous months
Join the mailing list and receive a hyperlinked weekly update on the discs reviewed. details
We welcome feedback on our reviews. Please use the Bulletin Board
Please paste in the first line of your comments the URL of the review to which you refer.