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Hyperion Records

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Track(s) taken from CDA67636
Recording details: January 2008
Jesus-Christus-Kirche, Berlin, Germany
Produced by Andrew Keener
Engineered by Simon Eadon
Release date: March 2009
Total duration: 15 minutes 34 seconds

'The busy piano-writing in these two world premieres is brilliant and passionate, the scoring [Jadassohn] is textbook 1887 and the musical structure inventive … Hyperion's A-team for concertos (Andrew Keener and Simon Eadon) is on top form, while the Berlin orchestra and Michael Sanderling provide crisp support for the sparkling and industrious Markus Becker who leaves the impression not only of having an affection for the three works but also that he has been playing them all his life' (Gramophone)

'Altogether an enjoyable disc for those who would explore the unfrequented byways of Romanticism' (BBC Music Magazine)

'These pieces, which burst with … memorable tunes and lashings of showy arpeggios, are played with admirable swagger by Markus Becker and are a welcome addition to Hyperion's exhaustive study of the Romantic Piano Concerto' (The Observer)

'It's clear Becker really feels this music… and I have a feeling you'll want to go back and play it again!' (American Record Guide)

'There is much to enjoy here: the nobility of the second movement of the Jadassohn First, the bucolic energy of the finale of his Second, the rollocking finale of the Draeseke … Becker's confident playing and tonal richness make as persuasive a case for the music as could reasonably be expected' (International Record Review)

'Sonics are first rate, as usual with Hyperion. Let’s hear it for obscure piano concertos!' (Audiophile Audition, USA)

'Markus Becker delivers heroic accounts of all three concertos, and Michael Sanderling's Berlin musicians bring buoyant orchestral textures to the mix' (International Piano)

'Markus Becker's confident, technically adroit performances certainly make the best possible case for all three works, and he receives excellent support from Michael Sanderling and the Berlin Radio orchestra. Typically fine sound guarantees collectors of this series complete satisfaction, while novice listeners interested in good Romantic music should consider this strongly as well. Recommended without reservations' (ClassicsToday.com)

'The performances are all that one could expect, the music shown in the best possible light. Markus Becker is both virtuoso and musician' (ClassicalSource.com)

Piano Concerto No 1 in C minor, Op 89
composer
1887

Adagio sostenuto  [4'43]

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
Despite his basically conservative tendencies, the prolific Jadassohn was somewhat influenced by the music of Liszt and Wagner, nowhere more obviously than in his Piano Concerto No 1 in C minor Op 89 (1887), which forsakes the traditional organization in favour of an interlinked Introduction quasi recitativo, Adagio sostenuto and Ballade. In proportions this turns out to be very similar to Liszt’s first piano concerto, with a relatively perfunctory, improvisatory opening section, a more expansive slow section and then a finale which emerges as the most complex and prolonged movement of all, unfolding in the full sonata-form that the other sections notably avoided. A frenetically agitated coda rounds off this passionate and formally inventive piece.

from notes by Kenneth Hamilton © 2009

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