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Prokofiev: Piano Concertos Nos. 1 & 3 / Bartok: Piano Concerto No. 3 Original recording reissued

4.5 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Original recording reissued, October 6, 1998
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$18.16 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details Temporarily out of stock. Order now and we'll deliver when available. We'll e-mail you with an estimated delivery date as soon as we have more information. Your account will only be charged when we ship the item. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

Frequently Bought Together

  • Prokofiev: Piano Concertos Nos. 1 & 3 / Bartok: Piano Concerto No. 3
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  • Prokofiev: Piano Concerto No. 3 / Ravel: Piano Concerto in G; Gaspard de la Nuit
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  • Rachmaninoff: Piano Concerto No. 3 / Tchaikovsky: Piano Concerto No. 1
Total price: $41.41
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Amazon.com

Martha Argerich first recorded the Prokofiev Third Concerto in the late '60s. Her fiery, hair-trigger playing, abetted by Claudio Abbado's incisive support with the Berlin Philharmonic in top form, set new standards for this warhorse. No one's come close to topping her extraordinary achievement, not even Argerich herself in this remake with Charles Dutoit and the Montreal Symphony Orchestra. The recording quality, for one, is less well defined. Dutoit imparts less character to the orchestral tuttis than Abbado, and Argerich's fingerwork, remarkable by anyone else's standard, is a shade more casual (compare the extensive unison octave runs: stupefyingly perfect in the early version, brilliantly competent here.). By contrast, the pianist's scintillating, witty traversal of Prokofiev's brash First Concerto shines with youthful ardor. While one can easily admire the lyric fire she brings to Bartók's third Concerto, some of her agogic fussings pull focus from, rather than strengthen, the music's inherent classicism. Zoltán Koscis, András Schiff, and Annie Fischer (all Hungarian pianists, not uncoincidentally) imbue their phrasings with a more internalized, speech-like expression. --Jed Distler
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1
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2
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4:34
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4:31
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4
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7:22
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5
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10:45
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6
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6:50
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7
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9:43
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Product Details

  • Performer: Martha Argerich
  • Orchestra: Montreal Symphony Orchestra
  • Conductor: Charles Dutoit
  • Composer: Sergei Prokofiev, Béla Bartók
  • Audio CD (October 6, 1998)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Original recording reissued
  • Label: Warner Classics
  • ASIN: B00000C2J8
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #141,842 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
And dumbstruck, as well!

Indeed, in my experience, this is the only recording of his First Piano Concerto wherein the relentless keyboard banging and typical hectoring orchestral volatility take a subservient role to the abundant wonders imbued in this music.

Listen, for example, to the majestic unfurling of the glorious opening Allegro brioso of Concerto No. 1--- and, then, after an exciting horn fanfare, Argerich enters with the most phenomenal, articulated, running passagework. It takes the breath away! How well Argerich has "aged" playing this work, how caressing her panache, her quiet intensity. There's no fierceness anymore, no aggression, just revelation and a manifold interconnectedness with the music. Throughout, it's moments like this that propel the performance, that make it so completely appealing. Listen, again, to the flutes' eerie fluttering shortly into the Andante assai--- and how Argerich's magical piano comes whispering, cat-like and hushed. Lastly, thrill to the way Argerich and Dutoit pursue the cyclical material of the Allegro scherzando finale to a hair-raising conclusion. Prokofiev? I'd hardly recognize you.

As if this weren't enough, Concerto No. 3 shimmers and glows in the outer movements and is translucent in the Andantino "variations." That Argerich has matured and mellowed is so telling, especially here, in a concerto she first tackled back in 1957. No longer is her need to "showcase" her dynamism or "whiteknuckle" the keyboard. No. No need at all.

Thus she turns Bartok's Third Piano Concerto into an almost mystical experience, yet filled with a sense of jubilant humanity.
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Format: Audio CD
Martha Argerich's gives the listener an invigorating view of Prokofiev's youthful iconoclasm. Her entire reading is less hard-driven than Richter, but arguably more zestful and animated, less fierce.
Her performance of the Third Concerto is perhaps more languid than in her early legendary performance with Abbado. Nevertheless, it is still quite nimble and definitely more open to passing caprice and fancy.
It is in the Bartok concerto where she really shines. Some like Bartok a little rougher, but Argerich brings more refinement, giving the composer his own voice rather than imposing her own. This piano concerto has a Mozartean grace to it. She achieves a remarkable, delicate chamber-like balance that has sometimes eluded her in the past.
Dutoit and the Montreal Symphony achieve fine support and unity. The recording is clear and naturally balanced. While lacking her trademark spark, all three performances are full of integrity.
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Format: Audio CD
Even though her Prokofiev 3rd is not as volatile as her earlier DG recording with Abbado, this one is more thoughtul and represents her mature interpretation of the concerto after more than 30 years of performing it in concert -- she is in no way technically inferior to the earlier recording. The Bartók 3rd is exemplary, and the technique in the Prokofiev 1st is astounding (although that comment regarding this pianist is superfluous).
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Format: Audio CD
Don't worry about the nit pickers. If you love this music, this is a fabulous performance of each of these great pieces. If you don't know this music, you owe it to yourself to get this CD and listen to it over and over again.
Argerich isn't just an important living pianist, she is one of the all time greats. Whether you always agree with her choices or not, she is always compelling. She is a treasure.
Here, the Bartok is performed by Argerich in an absolutely wonderful way. The orchestra does a spectacular job in making this music sounds as wonderful as it is.
The two Prokofiev concertos (1 & 3) are done with humor and energy as well as with intellect and taste.
Look, if you are still trying to get into twentieth century music, here is a CD that can help you make that move. These pieces are proof of the beauty and greatness of music making in the last century.
Listening to this CD is as much fun and intoxicating as your favorite roller coaster ride.
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Format: Audio CD
Two of the three concertos represented here are first recordings for Argerich. The first piano concerto of Prokofiev is real fun to listen to. As Argerich herself admits, she understands the composer's sense of humour, and 'his sensitivity'. Her performances reveal the subtleties of the score as well as the seemingly banal sense of humour Prokofiev injects into his music. And, as always, her technique is faultless.
Her Bartok is again technically brilliant. Her intuitive musicality is put into wonderful use, as it sounds well-thought-out, but it also sounds naturally spontaneous.
I am afraid to say the Prokofiev 3rd concerto fares less well. And for this, I put the blame on Dutoit, not Argerich.
After the lyrical slow introduction, the piano introduces the main theme. All is fine at the start. But less than one minute after the pianist has entered, one hears strange tempi fluctuations from Argerich. They not only sound forced, but they don't make musical sense. For example, where the piano has repeated runs in octaves, here at 6:21, Argerich starts very quickly, but slows down (a very subtle change, but noticeable). To me, it sounds as if Dutoit is forcing her to keep her speed at a safe measure. That is the last thing a soloist needs, to be forced by a conductor. Isn't a conductor supposed 'support' a soloist?? (in the second octave runs, repeated at 9:09, the same thing happens, only it is much more noticeable)
While all this is happening, one can sense that she doesn't like all the pushing around she is getting from Mr. Dutoit. Compared to her first recording, the whole performance takes almost 3 minutes longer than her 1967 recording.
Having said all that, I hear things in the piano part I didn't hear before, enhancing one's knowledge and enjoyment of the music.
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