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Scutolo, 'The Marvel of Marvels' (1912) by Henry Brokman-Knudsen (1868-1933)
Musée de la Ville de Paris, Musée du Petit-Palais, France / Lauros / Bridgeman Art Library, London
Track(s) taken from CDA67591/2
Recording details: February 2007
Potton Hall, Dunwich, Suffolk, United Kingdom
Produced by Michael George
Engineered by Tony Faulkner
Release date: June 2008
Total duration: 7 minutes 14 seconds

'These new recordings are sonically the best yet. Roscoe is famed for his touch and his playing's delicacy and finesse is evident throughout' (Gramophone)

'Apart from Grieg, no Scandinavian composer has written for the piano with more individuality and insight than Nielsen … Martin Roscoe is right inside this music and guides us through its marvels with great subtlety and authority. His is the most eloquent account since the pioneering set by Arne Skjøld Rasmussen. Hyperion gives him vivid and natural recorded sound and there are outstanding notes by Daniel Grimley' (BBC Music Magazine)

'The piano music of Carl Nielsen is notable not only for its striking emotional power and radicalism but also for its transparency—for the writing is always unmistakably Nielsen … the album as a whole is a treasure-chest; it presents an entirely new slant for those not acquainted with Nielsen's music and broadens the field of vision significantly for those who are … this deserves to become a most conspicuous recording, and Hyperion's usual excellence in achieving a full-bodied, crystal-clear sound continues boldly forward' (International Record Review)

'The Symphonic Suite, the Chaconne, the magnificent Theme and Variations … are powerful, poetic, original in both idea and structure, widely varied in mood, impressively organic and as important in their way as any of Nielsens' remarkable symphonies. Martin Roscoe's technique withstands everything that the composer throws at it. He obviously belives in every note, as well he might' (The Sunday Times)

'Martin Roscoe demonstrates throughout this revealing double CD set [that Nielsen's piano music] is a canon of work that desperately needs attention … fantastic playing of compelling authority by one of Britain's finest pianists. A wonderful discovery' (The Herald)

Fem Klaverstykker 'Five Piano Pieces', Op 3
Nos 2 & 5: ? 1887/9; set compiled 1890/1; dedicated to Orpheline Olsen; FS10

Other recordings available for download
Mina Miller (piano)
Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
It is not surprising, perhaps, that Nielsen’s first published work for the piano, the Five Piano Pieces Op 3, belongs essentially in the earlier category. Nielsen may have composed two of the pieces, Nos 2 and 5, as early as 1887–9, although the complete set was not assembled until 1890–91, while he was away from Denmark on his first trip abroad. The set is characteristically diverse in mood and expression. The opening number, ‘Folk Tune’, is in a somewhat stylized Jugendstil vein, although Nielsen adds the Danish direction ‘nynnende’ (‘humming’) to the opening bar. The third number, ‘Arabesque’, is remarkable for its sense of harmonic waywardness—a significant foreshadow of his later compositional idiom. Before publication, Nielsen referred to the piece as ‘Fanden’ (‘The Devil’), and the music is prefaced by a quotation from the symbolist poet Jens Peter Jacobsen: ‘Har Du faret vild i dunkle Skove? Kjender Du Pan?’ (‘Have you lost your way in the dark forest? Do you know Pan?’).

from notes by Daniel Grimley © 2008

Other albums featuring this work
'Nielsen: Complete Piano Music' (CDA66231/2)
Nielsen: Complete Piano Music
CDA66231/2  2CDs Rights no longer controlled by Hyperion  

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