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Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No. 2 / Rhapsody On A Theme Of Paganini

Serge Rachmaninov , Leonard Bernstein , New York Philharmonic Orchestra , Gary Graffman Audio CD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)

Price: $10.26 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
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MP3 Music, 4 Songs, 1985 $8.99  
Audio CD, 1990 $10.26  
Audio Cassette, 1987 --  

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View the MP3 Album.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Samples
Song TitleArtist Time Price
listen  1. Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No. 2 in C Minor, Op. 18: I. ModeratoGary Graffman;New York Philharmonic;Leonard Bernstein10:33Album Only
listen  2. Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No. 2 in C Minor, Op. 18: II. Adagio sostenutoGary Graffman;New York Philharmonic;Leonard Bernstein11:58Album Only
listen  3. III. Allegro scherzandoGary Graffman;New York Philharmonic;Leonard Bernstein11:06Album Only
listen  4. Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, Op. 43Gary Graffman;New York Philharmonic;Leonard Bernstein23:06Album Only


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Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No. 2 / Rhapsody On A Theme Of Paganini + Gershwin: Rhapsody In Blue / An American In Paris
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Product Details

  • Performer: Gary Graffman
  • Orchestra: New York Philharmonic Orchestra
  • Conductor: Leonard Bernstein
  • Composer: Serge Rachmaninov
  • Audio CD (October 25, 1990)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sony
  • ASIN: B0000025JI
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #16,346 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hard to find a better recording January 9, 2008
Format:Audio CD
This is one of the finest performance and recording of these pieces available. Gary Graffman shows his brilliant talent in these interpretations of Rachmaninoff. Far too many think that speed is critical in performing specific passages when in fact patience is required. One may have the skill to play all the notes but lack the talent to perform the music. Graffman performs with nuance and subtlety as well as skill and decision in bringing the souls of these pieces to life.

Highly recommended. (You'll throw your other recordings away after hearing this!)
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Emotionally Evocative September 10, 2008
By ChiMick
Format:Audio CD
I have many recorded performances of Rachmaninoff's "Rhapsody on a theme of Paganini", but this particular performance is without doubt my favorite.

As another reviewer mentioned; it has a supurb pace of performance allowing it to be enjoyed by both musical purist and neophyte alike.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great performance; annoying distortion on recording January 18, 2013
By horst
Format:Audio CD
Overall, this is a fantastic performance of both pieces. However, I have to take a full 2 stars off for one reason: momentary but terribly annoying distortion in the recording. It seems that at some point during the recording or remastering, the volume of piano channel hit the upper limit, resulting in static-sounding distortion. At first, I thought this was a problem with my headphones or my rip of the album. But when I went back and listened to the CD on a reasonably high-end audio system, it was still there. Once you hear it, it's impossible to ignore. I rarely listen to this otherwise fabulous album anymore for this reason.

Can someone else confirm this for me? It's most noticeable 20 seconds into the first movement, at the top of the crescendo of the opening chords. (It's possible, although unlikely, that I have a bad CD, or that it was picked up and corrected on later editions of the CD.)
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13 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding music and musicians May 23, 2000
Format:Audio CD
I have been listening to this particular recording for many years and it never fails to move and inspire , to open the musical pores in appreciation of its pure artistry and moving melodies. A beautiful interpretation!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Historic recording that all need to hear... June 10, 2012
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Short, surely, but to the point.

My first really in-depth "listening-to" of this work, and throughout my lp years my benchmark recording. Even though I had many recordings, including Richter's and Weissenberg's, it stayed on top of my list, totally untouchable.

Now, coming back to it, after all these years away (I sold my lp collection in 1993), I gladly welcome it back into my collection, and still would keep it up at very near the top of all those recordings that I own. This was, and still is, a fabulous, polished, finished execution of (to me) surely one of the finest concertos written in modern times (last century, now).

The remastering is very fine, perhaps even better than the original lp (I fear that it was too long ago that I last heard it to be certain), but certainly it remains fine.

Should you not be familiar with this recording, or with Gary Graffman, by all means do not put off, or deny yourself the pleasure of this excellent traversal of this brilliant work of Rachmaninoff's.

~operabruin
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars wonderfully heavy and intense February 5, 2010
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Rachmaninoff's Piano Concerto No.2 is wonderfully intense, deep, and heavy. Ever since I was a teenager, when I first experienced it, its complex magic of piano and orchestra had never left me. One of his best, especially this recording. This will always be one of my favorite recordings in classical music.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Performance September 6, 2009
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I bought this CD to replace the cassette version I had because I love this recording.It's wonderful! Graffman is fantastic and Bernstein always created energy and excitement as a conductor.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A absolutely superb performance September 14, 2014
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I believe Gary Graffman's performance of Rachmaninoff's "Rhapsodie on a Theme of Paginini" is simply the most exacting, exciting, and compelling performance available on disc! Further, his performance of Rachmininoff Piano concerto No. 2 is sublime in all respects. Strongly recommend this disc to others who have a special appreciation for Rachmaninoff and extraordinarily talented pianists like Grafmann!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
excellent
Published 1 month ago by Sanford Schulhofer
5.0 out of 5 stars Beauty For The Ears
What can you say about Rachmaninoff except pure, beautiful sound. If you love piano concertos, then you'll love this cd. I added it to my other masters and enjoy them all daily.
Published 2 months ago by Old Faithful J.G.
1.0 out of 5 stars review of rachmaninov piano concerto #2
given this was an older recording the sound was not that great. I felt the quality not what I was hoping for.
Published 5 months ago by Kay Haines
1.0 out of 5 stars I'm a sucker for most recordings of Rachmaninoff's music
and a good as Gary Graffman's playing can sometimes be this disc is marred by poor recording - sometimes you can't even hear the piano entrances - especially true on the Paganini... Read more
Published 8 months ago by Kenneth S. Wheelock
5.0 out of 5 stars Rachmaninoff concerto no. 2 for piano
Concerto No. 2 is my favorite piano concerto. I have heard better pianists, but this one was all right. It still sounded beautiful.
Published 10 months ago by Ruby L. Agnir
5.0 out of 5 stars Piano to Die For
Many people might not know that Rachmaninoff is one terrific composer. This album should be proof enough. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Barbara Frederick
2.0 out of 5 stars Not happy with this CD at all
I was disappointed with this CD. The sound quality is very poor. At times I can barely hear it, and at other times it is so loud I need to turn the CD player down. Read more
Published 14 months ago by Susan J. Hass
2.0 out of 5 stars who was in charge here?
I have to take issue with most reviewers here -- there's something seriously wrong, and I'm not sure whether to blame the engineers or the artists. Read more
Published 14 months ago by Stanley Crowe
5.0 out of 5 stars No!
This is absolutely my favorite classical composition. I first heard it and observed it (yes you must) while I was in high school. I have seen several live performances of it.
Published 14 months ago by joseph r miller
5.0 out of 5 stars RACHMANINOFF - A CD WITH STYLE AND GENIUS
GRAFFMAN BERNSTEIN AND THE NEW YORK SYMPHONY WEAVE THEIR MAGIC INTO THIS CD WHICH GIVES ME GOOSE PIMPLES WHENEVER I HEAR IT..
Published 14 months ago by Joy Blumenthal
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