MusicWeb International One of the most grown-up review sites around

2021
57,616reviews
and more.. and still writing ...

 

Search MusicWeb Here

     
  
 







Acte Prealable Polish CDs

Presto Music CD retailer

International mailing


 
Founder: Len Mullenger                                    Editor in Chief:John Quinn             

Some items
to consider

 

paid for
advertisements

Acte Prealable Polish recordings

Forgotten Recordings
Forgotten Recordings
All Forgotten Records Reviews


TROUBADISC
Troubadisc Weinberg- TROCD01450

100th birthday of Mieczyslaw Weinberg on December 8, 2019.
Renate Eggbrecht has recorded all 3 violin Sonatas
All Troubadisc reviews


FOGHORN Classics

Alexandra-Quartet
Brahms String Quartets

All Foghorn Reviews


All HDTT reviews

http://www.musicweb-international.com/Classrev/2022/Sep/Williams-sy1-NI6432.htm
Symphony No 1
Portrait of Ned Kelly

 

 


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing
sample

Sample: See what you will get

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Founding Editor
   
Rob Barnett
Editor in Chief
John Quinn
Contributing Editor
Ralph Moore
Seen & Heard
Editor Emeritus
   Bill Kenny
MusicWeb Webmaster
   David Barker
Postmaster
Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger

 

Discs for review may be sent to:
Jonathan Woolf
76 Lushes Road
Loughton
Essex IG10 3QB
United Kingdom

jonathan_woolf@yahoo.co.uk


 

REVIEW
Plain text for smartphones & printers


Advertising on
Musicweb


Donate and keep us afloat

 

New Releases

Naxos Classical
All Naxos reviews

Chandos recordings
All Chandos reviews

Hyperion recordings
All Hyperion reviews

Foghorn recordings
All Foghorn reviews

Troubadisc recordings
All Troubadisc reviews



all Bridge reviews


all cpo reviews

Divine Art recordings
Click to see New Releases
Get 10% off using code musicweb10
All Divine Art reviews

Eloquence recordings
All Eloquence reviews

Lyrita recordings
All Lyrita Reviews

 

Wyastone New Releases
Obtain 10% discount

Recordings of the Month

September 2022

http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2022/Sep/Medtner-melodies-Ang.htm
Nikolai Medtner

http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2022/Sep/schubert-symph-8-&-9-blomstedt-DG4863045.htm
Herbert Blomstedt

http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2022/Sep/Tarrodi-elements-DBCD204.htm
Tarrodi Four Elements

http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2022/Sep/Verdi-falstaff-57951.htm

http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2022/Sep/Letters-secret-4860462.htm
Secret Love Letters
Lisa Batiashvili

August 2022

Hervelois
Louis Caix d'Hervelois

massenet
orchestral songs

Singleton

 


String Quartets

la folia

mysterious

 

July 2022

John Luther Adams Houses of the Wind
John Luther Adams
Houses of the Wind

Horneman Alladin
Horneman Alladin

Stojowski piano concertos
Piano Concertos 1 & 2

Vaughan Williams on Brass


Yi Lin Jiang - Dualis I

 

 

 

Support us financially by purchasing
this disc through MusicWeb
for £5.99 postage paid world-wide.

Sergei PROKOFIEV (1891-1953)
Piano Concerto no.5 in G, op.55 [28:45]
Piano Sonata no.7 in B flat major, op.83 [17:48]
Piano Sonata no.8 in B flat major, op.84 [29:46]
Visions Fugitives nos. 3, 6 and 9 [2:36]
Sviatoslav Richter (piano)
Warsaw National Philharmonic Orchestra/Witold Rowicki
rec. dates and venues not specified. first issued: Concerto: Deutsche Grammophon, 1959; Sonata no.7: Melodiya, 1959; Sonata no.8: DG, 1961; Visions Fugitives: DG 1962
ALTO ALC 1230 [73:18]

Prokofiev’s 5th Concerto for piano is a curious work; in five quite short movements, it has the character of a suite or divertimento. Indeed, as James Murray’s notes tell us, it was originally going to be titled Music for Piano and Orchestra, before fellow composer Myaskovsky persuaded Prokofiev to re-name it. The restless first movement is followed by one of those puppet dances that feature in the second and third concertos - tick-tocking rhythms and jerky, wide-ranging piano writing. The central Toccata is done and dusted in under two minutes, giving way to the Larghetto, the longest - and to my mind finest - movement of the concerto. Like a lullaby at first, it has the most delicate scoring, though the central section becomes more troubled, with the full orchestra involved. The return of the opening, with gossamer-light tracery in the piano, is magical. The good-humoured and rumbustious Vivo rounds the concerto off.
 
Richter’s performance, issued first in 1959, is rightly regarded as a classic. He manages to find the exact balance between out and out pianism and lyrical beauty, and doesn’t succumb to the temptation of exaggeration, which many pianists can’t resist. Yet his playing is never dull, simply masterly.
 
The same goes for the two sonatas; these are two of the so-called ‘War Sonatas’, composed, along with the 6th Sonata op.82, in 1942-3, the darkest days of World War II. The booklet stresses the 7th Sonata’s connection with the battle of Stalingrad; this is perfectly fair, but, for me, seems rather stretching a point. Prokofiev’s wartime music falls into two categories; the frankly patriotic pieces such as the Symphonic March and The Year 1941 on the one hand, and the ‘absolute’ music, most of which is for various chamber combinations, on the other. For me, these sonatas belong firmly in the latter group.
 
The final item is a trio of the tiny piano pieces known as Visions Fugitives - Fleeting Visions would be a suitable translation, I suppose. These are from a live recording, as evidenced by the explosive sneeze from an audience member in the opening bars. They are miniature masterpieces, and emphasise the closeness between Prokofiev and the French composers Ravel and Debussy. Richter characterises them so sharply, yet throws them off disarmingly, underlining their delicious lack of pretension.
 
A wonderful disc, then; and the recordings, if dated, are perfectly adequate, allowing the superb musicianship of this great artist to shine through.
 
Gwyn Parry-Jones