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Nikolai Medtner (1880-1951)

Demidenko plays Medtner

Nikolai Demidenko (piano)
Originally issued on CDA66636
Recording details: September 1992
Snape Maltings, Suffolk, United Kingdom
Produced by Ates Orga
Engineered by Philip Hobbs
Release date: February 2009
Total duration: 70 minutes 36 seconds

Cover artwork: Twilight: Haystacks (1899) by Isaac Levitan (1860-1900)
 
1
Canzona serenata in F minor: Moderato  [5'08]
Skazki Op 20
2
Allegro con espressione  [3'15]
Sonaten-Triade Op 11
3
Sonata in D minor 'Sonata-Elegy'  [7'22]
4
5
Sonata tragica in C minor: Allegro risoluto  [11'44]
6
Theme and variations in C sharp minor Op 55  [10'13]
Drei Dithyramben Op 10
7
Mit höchstem Pathos  [9'08]
8
Sonata-Reminiscenza in A minor: Allegretto tranquillo  [18'39]

Awards

GRAMOPHONE EDITOR'S CHOICE

Reviews

'Few can touch this stunning Demidenko programme, excellently recorded and featuring playing of the highest order' (BBC Music Magazine Top 1000 CDs Guide)

'I must be careful not to make this sound like an indiscriminate rave review, but what do you do when a disc of this calibre drops through your letterbox? An exceptionally fine disc indeed' (Gramophone)

'More of the masterful pianism we have come to expect from this artist … delectable sounds and exquisite sensibility' (Classic CD)

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Brahms: The Three Violin Sonatas
CDH55087
Bach: Cantatas Nos 54, 169 & 170
CDH55312
Blow & Draghi: Odes for St Cecilia
CDH55257
Schubert: The Hyperion Schubert Edition, Vol. 16 – Thomas Allen
CDJ33016
Scriabin & Tchaikovsky: Piano Concertos
CDH55304
Among the most enigmatic figures of the twentieth century, Medtner was an apostle of conscience. He placed a premium on baroque polyphony, on classical structure, on a manner of thematic integration and cyclic metamorphosis romantic in legacy. He celebrated, he developed, he concentrated the sonata ideal. He was a resolute tonalist, a poetic melodist of the old guard. His most complex work does not clarify easily. Let this not deter us. Creatively the equal of his two most famous emigré compatriots Rachmaninov and Stravinsky, metaphorically like an Arthurian knight of old impassioned by his lady, Medtner was an artist in love with the beauty of his muse. He played for beauty’s sake. He composed for beauty’s sake.

Ates Orga 1993

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