The Slipped Disc daily comfort zone (83): Piano perfect

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  • Others who played Grieg’s short piano pieces particularly well were Ervin Nyiregihazi, Walter Giesking, and Grieg himself.

    Some of the loveliest Grieg on record is Sergei Rachmaninoff playing the introduction to the slow movement of the violin sonaa in C minor with his friend Fritz Kreisler.

    • As nearly always, Edgar, I am in complete agreement with you.
      And nearly as always, I ask your indulgence that I may add two names to your list: Richter and Andsnes.

  • Gilels is very, very good with these; so is Richter, and Pletnev.

    What I find so pleasing is the pieces themselves: delightful, and underplayed on classical stations. I’m particularly fond of Nos. 6 & 8 which Gilels plays so lovely.

    Grieg was more than just a writer for the orchestra and piano.

  • Not surprising since Gilels is a candidate for all-time best pianist with V. Horowitz, A. Rubinstein, R. Serkin, S. Richter, and C. Arrau (inmy opinion).

  • The Norwegian scientist-pianist Sigurd Slatterbrekk also, whose Simax ç∂ with Michael Jurowski makes even the concerto sound fresh again, like Moiseiwitsch and Rubinstein. I’m glad Flambeau mentioned Pletnev, because he plays Grieg’s 7 fugues for piano, inclouding a three-minute double I’ll hear today for the first time.

    Richter, Andsnes, Ivan Davis; Cyprin Kataris with his novel transcriptions, all fine, but Ervin Nyiregyhazi’s “Shepherd Boy” and one other are out of this world.

    Only Grieg’s big piano piece, what’s it called? ballade? misfires with me. Even Rubinstein can’t save it. Which brings us back to Gilels, always interesting to hear, and Richter’s inevitable rival even for the regard of their teacher Neinrich Neuhaus, whom Gilels later denied ever studying with.

  • In the last of Flambeau’s June 7 posts, he suggests discussing “all-time best pianist” and proposes Horowitz, Rubinstein, Rudolf Serkin, Richter, and Arrau.

    That is a great temperature-raiser,and a subject close to the hearts of many here.

    I heard each of Flambeau’s list except Horowitz at least twice, and Rubinstein many times.

    If”best” is too equine, call it Hall of Fame. Over to you, Norman. Should be good for 100 posts.

  • In lyrical romantic repertoire, Gilels was much better than Richter. As for the greatest pianist discussion, no list of candidates is complete without Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli.

    • D’accord. M2. Michelangeli goes on the list. One of the jurors who awarded him first place and gold medal at an international piano competition just before WWII, when ABM was about 20, is another candiate, Alfred Cortot, who died 58 years ago on 15 June 1962.

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