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Gould & Gulda: Piano Works


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Audio CD, July 10, 2012
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Product Details

  • Performer: Sasha Grynyuk
  • Conductor: None
  • Composer: Glenn Gould, Friedrich Gulda
  • Audio CD (July 10, 2012)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Piano Classics
  • ASIN: B0080EG7EG
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #470,175 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

Friedrich Gulda and Glenn Gould were two of the most controversial and fascinating pianists of the 20th century. Although justifiably famous for their musical abilities, they were also noted for their unique personalities. Both were notorious for their eccentricities, and their original compositions for piano reflect their specific innermost urges and interests. For Gulda, jazz was the inspiration for his cycle Play Piano Play while for Gould, his Sonata drew its inspiration from the great masters of polyphony and the Second Viennese School. Sasha Grynyuk, born in Ukraine, studied at the Guildhall School for Music and won its prestigious Gold Medal. Subsequently he was named 'Rising Star' by the BBC Music Magazine, and he received the Guildhall's Wigmore Prize. Charles Rosen found him to be, ''an impressive artist with a remarkable and unfailing musicality, always moving with the most natural, electrifying and satisfying interpretations.''

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Erik Ketzan on February 10, 2013
Format: Audio CD
This disc by Sasha Grynyuk contains the 10-part jazz/classical fusion "Play Piano Play" by Friedrich Gulda, some bits of juvenilia by Glenn Gould, a fascinating rendition of unfinished fragments from the piano sonata that Gould worked on as a teenager, and an excellent transcription of Gould's "So You Want to Write a Fugue".

"So You Want to Write a Fugue" was written by Gould for the finale of a 1963 television special titled "The Anatomy of Fugue", when Gould was around 31 years old. It was performed by four singers (soprano, alto, tenor, bass) accompanied by a string quartet. It was meant to illustrate the fugue form for a 1960's TV audience, but, Gould being Gould, he loaded the piece with his musical opinions and ideas. He paired "every good theme [with a] really strong countersubject," as he explained in interview a decade later, and ended it with what he called a "demolition of a fugue" (i.e. a deconstruction).

As originally recorded, it's a fun piece, but its jokey lyrics doomed it to the status of novelty. Like all novelties, one does not want to listen to it more than a couple times. Which is why Grynyuk's piano transcription is so welcome. Grynyuk takes Gould's composition (one of his precious few) and rescues it from novelty status by removing the voices and staying true to the contrapuntal, Wagnerian melodies and counter-melodies in the piece (Grynyuk's rendition sounds much like Gould's own transcription of Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg on Glenn Gould Conducts & Plays Wagner). Unlike the original, this is a version I can listen to over and over.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Paul Erickson on April 12, 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I bought this for the Gulda Play Piano Play. I love it. The Gould Sonata sounds like Bartok or Prokofiev.
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