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Kalkbrenner: Piano Concertos Nos.1 & 4 Import

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Audio CD, Import, October 10, 2006
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  • Kalkbrenner: Piano Concertos Nos.1 & 4
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Editorial Reviews

Concertos pour piano & orchestre n°1 & n°4 / Orchestre Symphonique de Tasmanie, piano & dir. Howard Shelley

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Allegro maestoso (Piano Concerto # 1 in D minor, Op 61)
  2. Adagio di molto
  3. Rondo: Vivace
  4. Maestoso brillante (Piano Concerto # 4 in A flat Major, op. 127)
  5. Adagio
  6. Rondo: Allegro non troppo


Product Details

  • Orchestra: Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra
  • Conductor: Howard Shelley
  • Composer: Friedrich Kalkbrenner
  • Audio CD (October 10, 2006)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: HYPERION
  • ASIN: B000GPI26S
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #31,530 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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By David A. Wend on October 24, 2006
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I ordered this CD after reading Bryce Morrison's review in Gramophone. I had not heard any of Kalkbrenner's music until this disc but am pleased that I got to know these concertos. Friedrich Kalkbrenner was a prodigy, performing Haydn concertos at the age of 5-1/2. He was friendly with all of the famous composers of his day: Beethoven, Hummel and Clementi and was a brilliant and successful pianist and teacher. He had a large number of pupil, among them for a brief time was Chopin He had quite an inflated sense of his own value and was lampooned by Heine as a "bonbon fallen in the mud."

The concertos remind of Chopin with their stunning virtuosity. The First Concerto, like Chopin's First, has a long orchestral introduction before the piano enters. The Forth is quite different with the soloist beginning after a brief twenty bar introduction. Both concertos are dazzling in their writing and demand a pianist of high ability. Howard Shelly is perfect for these concertos and is beautifully accompanied by the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra. Mr. Shelly also helped to reconstruct the Fourth Concerto from parts which clearly indicates his commitment to Kalkbrenner's music.

This is a delightful disc that is a must for anyone addicted to romantic piano concertos.
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Hyperion's ongoing series of 'Romantic Piano Concertos' makes available recordings of works by composers that classical music lovers may know about, but have never actually heard any of their music.

Kalkbrenner is essentially known as a pianist that Chopin admired, and he considered becoming his student. These concertos reveal that Kalkbrenner must have had a dazzling technique. Most piano concertos written in this time period were written by pianists for their personal performance. Naturally these pianist/composers would write to spotlight their technique and mastery of the instrument.

This series brings forth music seldom heard. The concertos on this disc, while not being masterworks of the highest order, are quite good and deserve to be known better.

Highly recommended!
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First I recommend you get all 69 piano, violin, and cello concertos in the Hyperion set. Kalkbrenner's concertos 2 and 3 are also available. He reminds of Hummel, and I see to some Chopin. In the Hyperion set most are lovely, only a few mediocre and some stand out from the pack. Kalkbrenner is one such composer. Should his concertos be bought out of the dust bin of obscurity and played on the concert tour? Absolutely....these are much finer than some of Mozart's less famous piano concerts.
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These are two of the most exquisitely beautiful pieces of piano music ever, rivaling that of John Fields. The execution of the pieces is extraordinary as well. I feel so fortunate to have heard this on the radio as Kalkbrenner is totally new to me. Now I can enjoy it whenever I wish.
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Format: Audio CD
Both concertos are wonderful but the first is truly a stunning piano concerto with beautiful melodies, fire-power and interest throughout. This, and the Thalberg piano concerto, would make fantastic introductions to piano concertos and romantic music for people with limited classical exposure, because they are fun and exciting throughout. This isn't to say that they don't also have appeal to those who know the genre. They're stunning at any level.
Mr Shelley certainly has my greatest admiration and thanks for introducing the listening public to so many fantastic pieces of neglect piano music. (Thanks also, of course, to Naxos and the Tasmanian Symphony.) He is truly virtuosic in his playing, with really clear definition and accenting that makes the concertos come alive. Playing the works written by leading 19th century virtuosos to show-case their abilities, Mr Shelley really shows HIS wonderful powers.
Thanks again for so much fantastic music..
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