Search MusicWeb Here


selling Internationaly

aSymphonies 1 and 5 £9.00 post free

See also Symphonies 2 and 3

Vision of Judgement £9 post free

Newest Releases


Symphonies 1,2,4 £11.75 post free

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Editor-in-Chief: Rob Barnett

Some items
to consider

 

  • Menuhin lost tapes
  • Overtures SACD
  • Krommer Flute Quartets
  • Schubert Piano Trios 2CD
  • Menuhin lost tapes


Let me tell you


David Pia


Beethoven Rattle


Highly Impressive


Matthews Shostakovich
Sheer delight!


To live with


outstanding retrospective


A superb celebration


flair, insight, controversy


outstanding singing

 


Sheer bliss


best thing I’ve heard this year

this really exciting release

 

REVIEW
Plain text for smartphones & printers


Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on
Musicweb



Donate and get a free CD

New Releases

Naxos Classical

Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
Altus
Arcodiva
Atoll
CDAccord
Cameo Classics
Hallé
Hortus
Lyrita
Nimbus
Prima voce
Red Priest
Redcliffe
Retrospective
Saydisc
Sheva
Toccata Classics
Wyastone


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing
sample

Sample: See what you will get

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Editor in Chief
   
Rob Barnett
Seen & Heard
Editor Emeritus
   Bill Kenny
Editor in Chief
   Stan Metzger
MusicWeb Webmaster
   David Barker
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger

 

Availability
Johannes BRAHMS (1833-1897)
Piano Concerto No. 2 in B flat major, Op. 83 [45:09]
Edward Kilenyi (piano)
Orchestre Symphonique RIAS de Berlin/Jonel Perlea
rec. 1955, Berlin
FORGOTTEN RECORDS FR 936 [45:09]

Apart from a couple of CDs on APR and Pearl, there has been a dearth of releases from Edward Kilenyi’s meagre recorded legacy. It is gratifying that Forgotten Records, the French reissue label, is redressing the balance.
 
The Hungarian-American pianist was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1910. There was music in the family. His father was a violinist, music teacher and noted film composer. Edward travelled to Hungary to study with Ernő Dohnányi at the Franz Liszt Academy of Music in Budapest. Aside from his concertizing, in 1953 he became a professor of music at Florida State University, where a fellow faculty member was none other than his old teacher Dohnányi. Many of Kilenyi’s recordings are held in the International Piano Archives at Maryland (IPAM), part of the University of Maryland Libraries. He died in 2000.
 
At the helm of this Brahms performance is the Romanian conductor Jonel (or Ionel) Perlea (1900-1970). To my mind he is a very underrated conductor, having made some extremely distinguished opera recordings. Perlea sets the pace of the opening movement of the Brahms in an ideal tempo. It’s very much in the manner of Szell, with precision and rhythmic exactitude. The effect is buoyant, and sprightly, and paves the way for the pianist to enter the fray. Kilenyi’s gleaming virtuosity enables him to negotiate the difficulties and potential pitfalls. His vision of the music is realized to striking effect. Perlea is perfectly attuned to the pianist’s wavelength throughout.
 
The second movement could be more energized. It’s a little too laid-back and lacking in stamina. In the third movement the solo cello is slightly recessed and distant, thus preventing the listener from savouring its luscious, lyrical opening gesture. Nevertheless, Kilenyi is both ardent and heartfelt. The finale is sunny and extrovert, with both pianist and conductor engaging in an alluringly managed dialogue.
 
Digitally re-mastered from LP, the source copies are Remington R-199-164 and Bertelsmann 7052. Remington were a low budget label (1950-57), well-known for their products’ considerable surface noise. The Bertelsman label is new to me. The transfers have come up extremely well, and sound quality is more than acceptable. Dynamic range is a tad restricted at times, but much surface noise has been eliminated. The piano is forwardly placed, with the orchestra marginally recessed. This results in some loss of orchestral detail at times, but this in no way detracts from an otherwise captivating performance.
 
Kilenyi and Perlea also recorded the Liszt Piano Concerto No. 1 and the Totentanz for Remington with the same orchestral forces. It’s a pity that these were not included here; the spare capacity would have accommodated at least one of them.
 
Stephen Greenbank

Masterwork Index: Brahms piano concerto 2