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Chopin: Complete Waltzes Import

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Audio CD, Import, January 12, 2010
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Product Details

  • Conductor: none
  • Composer: Chopin
  • Audio CD (January 12, 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Hyperion
  • ASIN: B002W8IIP2
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #50,593 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Waltz for piano No. 1 in E flat major, Op. 18, CT. 207
2. Waltz for piano No. 2 in A flat major, Op. 34/1, CT. 208
3. Waltz for piano No. 3 in A minor, Op. 34/2, CT. 209
4. Waltz for piano No. 4 in F major, Op. 34/3, CT. 210
5. Waltz for piano No. 5 in A flat major, Op. 42, CT. 211
6. Waltz for piano No. 6 in D flat major ('Minute'), Op. 64/1, CT. 212
7. Waltz for piano No. 7 in C sharp minor, Op. 64/2, CT. 213
8. Waltz for piano No. 8 in A flat major, Op. 64/3, CT. 214
9. Waltz for piano No. 9 in A flat major ('L'adieu') Op. 69/1, CT. 215
10. Waltz for piano No. 10 in B minor, Op. 69/2, CT. 216
11. Waltz for piano No. 11 in G flat major, Op. 70/1, CT. 217
12. Waltz for piano No. 12 in F minor, Op. 70/2, CT. 218
13. Waltz for piano No. 13 in D flat major, Op. 70/3, CT. 219
14. Waltz for piano in A flat major, KK IVa/13, CT. 221 (B. 21)
15. Waltz for piano in E major, KK IVa/12, CT. 220 (B. 44)
16. Waltz for piano in E minor, KK IVa/15, CT. 222 (B. 56)
17. Waltz for piano in A minor, KK IVb/11, CT. 224 (B. 150)
18. Waltz for piano in E flat major, KK IVb/10, CT. 223
19. Waltz for piano in E flat major (spurious), KK IVa/14 (B. 46)
20. Contredanse for piano in G flat major, KK. Anh.Ia/4 (B. 84) (spurious)
See all 23 tracks on this disc

Editorial Reviews

To celebrate the 200th anniversary of Chopins, Hyperion has excerpted some of the finest performances from Garrick Ohlsson's complete Chopin project, originally recorded for the Arabesque label and reissued on Hyperion as a 16-CD boxed set. These discs include some of the finest contemporary Chopin playing and include definitive performances of the complete etudes and mazurkas.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By C. Pontus T. on January 17, 2010
As a young man, I found Chopin's Waltzes very approachable and pianistically rewarding (did play a number of them myself). However, with age I seem to revisit these Viennese sweets increasingly seldom. I believe the reason is twofold: they are the least profound genre pieces in the Chopin oeuvre, if with a number of important exceptions; and they are very hard to bring off as a whole, something that perhaps no pianist has fully mastered on disc.

As to the former issue, Ohlsson is likely the most persuasive proponent on record to convince us that the Waltzes do contain depth and darkness like the Mazurkas, and that some even approach tone poems like the Polonaises; before Ohlsson, Alexeev adopted a similar approach in the mid-1980s and succeeded almost as well. Indeed, Op 34/2, Op 64/2, Op 69 and Op 70/2 all come out as deeply dark as any of the great Mazurkas--miles away from the pompous ballrooms of Vienna and Paris. Furthermore, Op 34/1 is given such a large-scale and poetic performance that calling it a tone poem would not be an exaggeration (Ohlsson seems to have special feelings for this piece and even, which is a rare exception in his complete survey, adds a number of notes in the upward figurations just before the Coda).

So far so good; nonetheless, to these ears it does not matter how much beauty and refinement are induced in Op 18, Op 34/3, Op 42, Op 64/1 and Op 70/1--for better or for worse, they are still brilliant showpieces. It is in the area of brilliance that Ohlsson falls somewhat short of the versions by Ashkenazy,
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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful By B. Goode on December 25, 2013
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As an old man, I have developed a passion for Chopin's music, which I did not adequately appreciate 50 or 60 years ago. I bought this CD as a Christmas gift for my wife, and we agree it is the best rendition of Chopin's waltzes that we have in our modest collection. All the waltzes are outstanding, but perhaps I might focus on Opus 69, which consists of two of the longer waltzes. According to Tad Szulc, Chopin composed the Waltz in A-flat major in 1835 at the request of Maria Wodzinka, the 16-year-old daughter of a Polish count. The Waltz was only published posthumously.

Chopin, at age 25, met Maria in Dresden after a surprise meeting of Chopin and her brother Feliks Wodzinski on the street. There was a mutual attraction, and Chopin delayed his trip to Leipiz to stay two weeks longer in Dresden than planned. What followed was an awkward, prolonged and ultimately fruitless courtship. Because Chopin did not look well during that encounter, the Countess Wodzinka insisted on delaying the announcement of an engagement for a year, during which Chopin was to get bed early every night and try to improve his health. After going back to Paris, Chopin worked very hard every day and kept an active social life in the evenings, often getting to bed after midnight. It is doubtful whether going to bed early would have helped his health enough to satisfy the Countess, but in the end Chopin received the "Dear Frederic" letter from the Countess, plus a brief note from Maria thanking him for some trifle and saying "Remember me." Szulc says Maria Wodzinka may have been infatuated with the famous musician, but Maria was not necessarily ready to leave her family to live the life of the Paris intelligentsia.
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