In order to compile a potential piano recital program, I turned my attention to the long-neglected (by me) masterpieces of Rachmaninov. Although I have known about the pieces for long and actually played two of them before, I was not aware of how great the rest of the Preludes are. So yesterday after I got off work, I bought this recording by Ashkenazy made in 1975, which has been refried (like refried beans?) infinite number of times by Decca.

The early preludes are a continuation of Chopin - emotional and burning, but Rachmaninov is more controlled and symphonic in nature. The sixth (in E-flat) and seventh (in C minor) preludes in Op.23 struck me with their similarity to his Second Piano Concerto (also in C minor). The climax can be built up so swiftly in a minute by never-ending succession of chords!

The second set, Op.32, is more revolutionary. Rachmaninov has absorbed the change in musical taste in the early 20th century. Here and there one can find traces of Debussy or Stravinsky. The prelude I still love most is No.5 in G - my perfect-score piece in Grade 8 exam.

2 則留言:

Fiona 提到...

I want to listen to them ^_^

匿名 提到...

also take a look at the etudes-tableaux.
aren't as 'pretty' as the preludes, but even a step further from the op.32 set.