Variations on a Theme of Chopin, Op. 22 by Sergei RachmaninoffSergei Vasilievich Rachmaninoff: ( 1 April 1873- 28 March 1943) He was a composer, pianist, and conductor. (“Sergei Rachmaninoff” was the spelling the composer himself used- and Rachmaninoff is the last name his parents also used before the Soviet’s russification efforts- including when he became a United States citizen. However, alternative transliterations of his name include Sergey or Serge, and Rachmaninov, Rakhmaninoff. ) Rachmaninoff was born in 1873 in Semyonovo, near Novgorod, in north-western Russia. He was born into a noble family of Tatar descent, who had been in the service of the Russian tsars since the 16th century. His parents were both amateur pianists.
Rachmaninov is regarded as one of the greatest pianists of the twentieth century. He had legendary technical facilities and rhythmic drive, and his large hands were able to cover the interval of a thirteenth on the keyboard (a hand span of approximately twelve inches). His large handspan roughly corresponded with his height; Rachmaninov was 6 feet 6 inches (1.98m) tall according to sources. He also had the ability to play complex compositions upon first hearing. Many recordings were made by the Victor Talking Machine Company recording label of Rachmaninov’s performing his own music, as well as works from the standard repertory.
Daniil Trifonov - Rachmaninov: Chopin Variations op.22 - Live in Italy 2013
Variations on a Theme of Chopin, for piano, Op. 22
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Shopena , Op. In the first edition, it is noted that 3 of the variations and the final Presto section can be omitted if the performer wishes. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. This article needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed.
Having had, frankly, an indifferent time in recent years as a pianist in the studio, this great musician here returns to something like top form. These may be his first recordings of these works but they sound as though they have been in his fingers for a long time. The Chopin Variations inhabits the same pianistic and harmonic world as the Op 23 set of Preludes written at the same time and the Second Concerto completed two years earlier. Indeed, there are many passages that sound as though they are consciously referring to the Preludes and concerto, similarities that Ashkenazy evokes more keenly than most. The year-old Berezovsky also paired the Chopin Variations with the D minor Sonata in his distinguished Teldec recording but his year-old former compatriot wins on points, drawing together the diffuse elements of this sprawling work more cohesively, playing with more expressive depth and luxuriating in a burnished golden tone with a lovely cushioned bass. In all three movements, notably the central Lento , Ashkenazy is quicker by a fair margin than Berezovsky. This is his most successful disc for some time, a notable adjunct to the renowned Rachmaninov recordings of his youth for the same label.
Overall, it is an elaborate and interesting work that exhibits a wide variety of mood and pianistic invention. The first eleven variations follow the form of the theme fairly closely, with a only a small amount of liberty.
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