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

  2022
 57,903 reviews
   and more ... and still writing ...

Search MusicWeb Here
Acte Prealable Polish CDs

Presto Music CD retailer
 
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


Clarissa Bevilacqua plays
Augusta Read Thomas

all Nimbus reviews

Brahms Dvorak
Brahms 2 Dvorak 7
all tudor reviews

 

 


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
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


 


Support us financially by purchasing this from

Franz SCHUBERT (1797-1828)
Sonata in B flat major D.960 [42.51]
Three Pieces D.946, E flat minor [12.02], E flat major [11.54], C major [5.01]
Bernard Roberts (piano)
rec. 2003, The Wathen Hall, St Paul's School, London
CLAUDIO RECORDS CR5362-2 [71.51]

Bernard Roberts died in 2013 after a lengthy and successful career. For collectors his most significant achievement was the first complete set of the Beethoven Piano Sonatas to be recorded "direct to disc". This issue preserves his performances of one of the late Schubert sonatas and the set of Three Pieces D.946. This last was published many years after the composer's death in 1868. The edition in which it became known was edited anonymously by Brahms who made rather free changes to Schubert's manuscript and seems not to have concerned himself with following the composer's clear instructions concerning a very large cut or, indeed, with the possibility that these pieces may or may not belong together. One must therefore treat the Three Pieces as a maybe-unfinished work in progress. That, along with the use of a modern piano, places the performance firmly in the category I like to think of as non-HIP. That does not preclude the possibility of an enjoyable half hour in the presence of a great master, which Schubert most assuredly is. His facility for subtly spinning a lovely melody over many minutes is as strong at the very end of his short life as it was during his early maturity. There is no such thing as 'late Schubert' but it is very easy to hear a premonition that the end was near in these beautiful pieces, the first two of which are quite substantial.

The B flat major Sonata is one of a celebrated trio of masterworks and is firmly established in the repertoire of all classical pianists. Roberts treats it with great dignity and a high degree of skill. Nothing about this says 'listen to me', this is pianism at the service of the composer. For me I would much prefer that service to be performed on a keyboard that Schubert might have used himself. There is a huge gulf between the capabilities of a modern Steinway and a Viennese fortepiano such as, for example, the 1820 Brodmann used by András Schiff (on ECM2426). The range of colours and dynamics possible with the latter make any effort made on a Steinway Model D somewhat monochrome. The result is that contrasts are reduced or entirely lost. Once again, this does not make Bernard Roberts' performance anything other than very musical, but it does mean that Schubert's 'heavenly length' is sometimes a touch overlong because the variety of sounds he would himself have expected are missing.

Claudio's Colin Atwell has produced his usual highly realistic sound and if you enjoy the received wisdom of modern performance you could do a lot worse than hear this CD. After all, Schubert heard through nearly two centuries of accumulated tradition is still beautiful, if somewhat less lively than he might be. The useful but short liner notes are by the pianist. Since the disc is labelled Vol.1 one assumes there may be more to come.

Dave Billinge



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 cpo reviews

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


All APR reviews

Lyrita recordings
All Lyrita Reviews

 

Wyastone New Releases
Obtain 10% discount

Recordings of the Month

October 2022

Berg Violin Concerto
Violin Concerto Elmes

DEbussy Jeux
Debussy Jeux

Romantic pioano masters
Romantic Piano Masters

The future is female - Vol 2
Volume 2 - The Dance

impromptu harp music
Complete Harp Impromptus

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