[ Naxos / CD ]
Release Date: Friday 1 July 2016
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Pianist Boris Giltburg sees Rachmaninov's Études-tableaux, Op. 39 as cinematic short stories or colourful tone paintings. In contrast, the unashamedly beautiful Moments musicaux are concentrated explorations of a single idea or mood, from struggle and pain towards light and genuine joy. In these collections, which contain some of the composer's most affecting music, Rachmaninov shows himself to be a master of the meticulously crafted short-form genre.
Pianist Boris Giltburg's recordings for Naxos continue with some of Rachmaninov's best loved solo repertoire. Giltburg's 2015 Schumann program (8573399) was widely acclaimed, BBC Music Magazine stating that "His tone is pure velvet, cushioned and almost vocal in quality with never a hint of harshness-and complemented here by excellent recording-and the phrasing is always eloquent." This was followed soon after by a program of Beethoven sonatas (8573400), admired by Gramophone: "Giltburg's highly articulated fingerwork… gives appropriate variety and character to the gnarly writing… Naxos provides superb, full-bodied and detailed sound."
These works are always popular on record and we have of course visited this repertoire before, notably in highly regarded recordings made in the 1990s by the remarkable Idil Biret. With multiple award-winning artist Boris Giltburg we have the opportunity of bringing a freshly imaginative view onto some of the 20th century's finest Russian piano music, and introducing it to Companion Titles - his growing cohort of fans in the 21st.
"[Giltburg] is that genuine rarity: a pianist whose Rachmaninov is entirely idiomatic yet intensely personal in a way that yields fresh perspectives on this well traversed repertory...His originality stems from a convergence of heart and mind, served by immaculate technique and motivated by a deep and abiding love for one of the 20th century's greatest composer-pianists." Gramophone Disc of the Month June 2016
"Each of the nine jewel-like miniatures in the cycle - mostly under five minutes in length - possesses a beguiling ambiguity, from brooding to pitch black, interrupted by flashes of light. Giltburg, a natural Rachmaninov interpreter, plays with technical fluidity and honed musicality." (The Observer)
Etudes-Tableaux, Op. 39
Moments Musicaux, Op. 16