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Janacek: Piano Works

Firkusny , Janacek Audio CD
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Janacek: Piano Works + Leos Janacek: Piano Works / Solo Piano / Concertino and Capriccio
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Product Details

  • Composer: Janacek
  • Audio CD (November 15, 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Newton Classics
  • ASIN: B005NKRFRI
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #472,577 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Piano Sonata ('Zulice, 1.X.05,' 'From the Street, 1 October, 1905'), JW 8/19 (final movement lost): 1. Foreboding: Con moto
2. Piano Sonata ('Zulice, 1.X.05,' 'From the Street, 1 October, 1905'), JW 8/19 (final movement lost): 2. Death: Adagio
3. On the Overgrown Path (Po zarostlém chodnícku), for piano, JW 8/17: Book 1: 1. Our Evenings
4. On the Overgrown Path (Po zarostlém chodnícku), for piano, JW 8/17: Book 1: 2. The Barn Own has not Flown Away!
5. On the Overgrown Path (Po zarostlém chodnícku), for piano, JW 8/17: Book 1: 3. A Blown-Away Leaf
6. On the Overgrown Path (Po zarostlém chodnícku), for piano, JW 8/17: Book 1: 4. Come with Us!
7. On the Overgrown Path (Po zarostlém chodnícku), for piano, JW 8/17: Book 1: 5. The Madonna of Frydek
8. On the Overgrown Path (Po zarostlém chodnícku), for piano, JW 8/17: Book 1: 6. They Chattered Like Swallows
9. On the Overgrown Path (Po zarostlém chodnícku), for piano, JW 8/17: Book 1: 7. Words Fail!
10. On the Overgrown Path (Po zarostlém chodnícku), for piano, JW 8/17: Book 1: 8. Goodnight!
11. On the Overgrown Path (Po zarostlém chodnícku), for piano, JW 8/17: Book 1: 9. Unutterable Anguish
12. On the Overgrown Path (Po zarostlém chodnícku), for piano, JW 8/17: Book 1: 10. In Tears
13. On the Overgrown Path (Po zarostlém chodnícku), for piano, JW 8/17: Book 2: 1. Andante
14. On the Overgrown Path (Po zarostlém chodnícku), for piano, JW 8/17: Book 2: 2. Allegretto - Presto
15. On the Overgrown Path (Po zarostlém chodnícku), for piano, JW 8/17: Book 2: 3. Piů mosso
16. On the Overgrown Path (Po zarostlém chodnícku), for piano, JW 8/17: Book 2: 4. Allegro - Adagio
17. On the Overgrown Path (Po zarostlém chodnícku), for piano, JW 8/17: Book 2: 5. Vivo
18. Work(s): A Recollection
19. In the mists (V Mlhách), pieces (4) for piano, JW 8/22: 1. Andante
20. In the mists (V Mlhách), pieces (4) for piano, JW 8/22: 2. Molto adagio
See all 22 tracks on this disc

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars janacek to Firkusny - From master to pupil December 22, 2011
Who better to present a recital of a composer's music than an artist who studied with him? Rudolf Firkusny began his musical career under the tutalage of Leos Janacek, which gives his intepretation of Janacek's solo piano works special significance.

All of Janacek's major works for the instrument are present: Piano Soanta 1.X.1905, On an Overgrown Path, and In the Mists. It's difficult to say exactly how, but Firkusny's playing seems imminently suited to these works. Just as Czech orchestra can make Dvorak sparkle in a way that seems elude ensembles from other countries, so to does Janacek's music benefit from the touch of a sympathetic countryman.

It's clear that Firkusny understands Janacek's music and it's likely he discussed the finer points of interpretation with the composer. The folk-inspired passages sound forthright and simple, while the more complex develop organically. Janacek relied heavily on the cumulative dramatic effect of short phrases and motifs, and Firkusny delivers them with a sure hands. He knows how to draw the connections between the musical thoughts to present a cohesive whole.

With most other performers, Janacek's music seems to me beautiful, yet static. In these performances Firkusny imbues them with a sense of forward motion that's leading to an inevitable climax.

These recordings were originally released on RCA Red Seal over a decade ago. Newton Classics provides a real service by making them available again. The remastering is flawless, and never gets in the way of the original recordings.
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