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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: June 2007
Potton Hall, Dunwich, Suffolk, United Kingdom
Produced by Michael George
Engineered by Tony Faulkner
Release date: June 2008
Total duration: 10 minutes 46 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)

Tre Klaverstykker 'Three Piano Pieces', Op 59
1927/8; published posthumously in 1937; FS131

Molto adagio  [2'46]

Other recordings available for download
Mina Miller (piano)
Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
The dual sense of childlike innocence and devilish improvisation is brought to the foreground in the Three Piano Pieces Op 59, which Nielsen composed in 1928 but which were not published until 1937, six years after his death. Contemporary with the sixth symphony and the two late concertos for flute and clarinet, the Three Pieces sound almost like a distillation of the earlier Suite Op 45, but here there is little sense of a carefully crafted tonal process. Although the third piece ends dramatically with a craggy fanfare in E flat major, the final bars are effective precisely because they are unexpected and largely unprepared. Rather, it is the music’s sense of characterization—almost like a piece of abstract music-theatre—that is the work’s structural driving force. Hence, Nielsen can be heard as paralleling tendencies in the work of two great Continental modernists from the younger generation—Schoenberg and Stravinsky—even as he approaches the end of his own creative life. At times the Three Pieces are Nielsen’s most challenging and innovative work, but there is little sense of stylistic tension or strain, rather the continuation of a process of invention and imagination that had been apparent from his very earliest piano compositions.

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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