If There Is Much In The Window There Should Be More In The Room

Sunday, March 4, 2012

(Rafal Blechacz) Frédéric Chopin: Piano Concerto No. 1 in E minor, Op. 11

(Rafal Blechacz) Frédéric Chopin: Piano Concerto No. 1 in E minor, Op. 11

The title of this glorious concerto is another example of musical cataloguing triumphing over historical fact. Far from being Chopin’s first piano concerto, this is actually his second. It was published before the real No. 1, though, and therefore became forever known as the composer’s Piano Concerto No. 1.
The issue is largely academic because Chopin’s two piano concertos were composed within a year of each other. As you listen to this deeply expansive and expressive work, it has the mark of a composer who has reached full emotional and musical maturity, so it’s astonishing to think that Chopin wrote it while in his late teens. At its premiere in 1830, he played the piano part himself, and the concert marked his final public appearance in Poland. Within weeks, Chopin had left for Vienna and then Paris, where he remained for the rest of his life.

Although best known for its lyrical middle movement, this concerto also contains melodic gems throughout the two outer movements. It’s unashamedly heart-on-your-sleeve stuff, with Chopin allowing the rich sounds of the piano to be cushioned by some gloriously rich string accompaniment. The majority of Chopin’s output was for solo piano. But, as his two concertos for the instrument prove, he was adept at writing for piano and orchestra too.

This is Chopin with the real Polish touch. Chopin's music, its appeal with everyone and most true with Polish pianists who have a special bond with the music of their compatriot...

Polish pianist Rafal Blechacz was just 20 years old when he swept all five top prizes at the 2005 Chopin Competition in Warsaw. His domination was so thorough the judges declined to award a runner-up.

Now, with a victory that thrust him into a global spotlight as the first Pole to win the coveted Chopin Prize since Krystian Zimerman in 1975, Rafal Blechacz has recorded Chopin's two Piano Concertos with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra and conductor Jerzy Semkow.

Blechacz plays with an unfettered fluency. It gives his Chopin sincerity and directness, without any of the fussiness that comes from overworking the nuances or overindulging the intimacy.

And you can be sure that the beauty of the hushed heartache that Blechacz achieves in the concerto's slow movement will, over time, become even more magical in its tenderness.

A terrific piano concerto which Blechacz performed with ecstatic precision, emotion and absolute elegance.


Frédéric Chopin (1810-1849)

Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No. 1 in E minor, Op. 11
I. Allegro maestoso
II. Romance. Larghetto
III. Rondo. Vivace

Conductor: Jerzy Semkow

Ensemble: Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra

Soloists: Rafal Blechacz
Record Label: Deutsche Grammophon


A brilliant performance ... accuracy, balance and virtuosity worthy of one of the great pianists of our time.

Movement of great beauty and lyricism, which becomes more evident with the magnificent interpretation of Rafal Blechacz.

The third movement of Chopin's concerto 1, distinguished by its brightness, expressiveness, grace and supreme elegance, which proposes a great challenge for the pianist who dares to interpret.
Rafal Blechacz again shows his amazing virtuosity, maturity and ability to understand every single note of this masterpiece.
It is one of the best performances of the concert 1, and perhaps the best currently available. No doubt Blechacz deservedly received all the first prizes of the Chopin competition 2005.

No comments:

Post a Comment