Thursday, February 6, 2014

WHO Is Playing Liszt's Tenth Rhapsody In This Recording?...

When I first heard this recording of the Liszt Rhapsody, I could scarcely believe that it was the pianist performing it.
The stunning clarity and power of the myriad passages that whirl their way from beginning to end in this celebration of  pyrotechnique  - was this Horowitz? Who else was there who could wield such prowess on the instrument?
The recording was part of a decade(1928 - 1937) of recordings made by Artur Rubinstein, during a period when the Rubinstein the world knows as a great poet  demonstrating  his magic by way of Chopin, Schumann, Brahms and other great composers of the Golden Age of piano seemingly was testing the outer reaches of his physical technique, almost as if he needed to give answer to the gargantuan powers that the young Horowitz introduced to the American audiences in 1928, interestingly enough, the very same year Rubinstein began this series of recordings for the piano. Coincidence? Or a need on the part of Rubinstein to certify an aspect of his pianistic arsenal?  I cannot answer, as this question is pure speculation.
The Liszt Rhapsody is included on a  CD called "Rubinstein Fireworks," with recordings transferred from the original 78 discs to digital brilliance in a process called Cedar Sound System out of Milano.
Listen to this disc - be honest! WOULD you have correctly identified Rubinstein as the "culprit" playing Liszt in that manner - I most certainly would not have been able to!

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