Please wait...

Hyperion Records

Click cover art to view larger version
Track(s) taken from CDA67843
Recording details: June 2010
Federation Concert Hall, Hobart, Tasmania, Australia
Produced by Ben Connellan
Engineered by Veronika Vincze
Release date: March 2012
Total duration: 11 minutes 3 seconds

'Shelley is a formidable presence both as soloist and conductor. Yes, he has the technique and dexterity to play this music; but he also understands how to make the most of the orchestral writing (which … is frequently more interesting than Chopin's) … there's a considerable grace to his playing too—his immersion in repertoire of this period has given him an innate understanding of what makes it tick' (Gramophone)

'Howard Shelley attacks it all with gleeful extravagance. He is also directing the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra from the piano as he plays music of often atrocious difficulty, which is something of a tour-de-force in itself. It's great fun' (The Guardian)

'Howard Shelley's virtuosity is seemingly effortless, even in the face of pianistic pyrotechnics which are prodigious in the extreme and seemingly endless too … a wonderful beauty and variety of tone, and carefully judged rubato and rhythmic nuances which give an air of improvisation to the constant embellishments of the slow movements … the support of the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra is no less distinguished, both in sonority and ardour, carrying the listenere through the extended orchestral expositions with real narrative sweep and ardour … Jeremy Nicholas' notes are excellent and the recording captures every detail and refinement of Shelley's stunning performances' (International Record Review)

'Shelley reminds us of why he is so suited to this repertoire: the sparkling passagework is impeccably and suavely delivered. Interaction between piano and orchestra is beautiful: the flute additions to the piano's ornamnentation are delightful … [The Adagio ed Allegro is] a magnificently chosen filler, a bonne bouche that perfectly showcases Shelley's considerable talents without making any real demands on the listener. Kalkbrenner remains an interesting figure, and these works deserve attention' (International Piano)

Adagio ed Allegro di bravura, Op 102
1830; dedicated to His Royal Highness the Grand Duke of Hesse

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
The Adagio ed Allegro di bravura Op 102 (1830)—dedicated to His Royal Highness the Grand Duke of Hesse—is a glittering entertainment piece, to which Chopin’s Andante spianato and Grande Polonaise is not unrelated. The orchestra’s sombre Adagio maestoso, in A flat major, is contrasted by the piano’s plaintive entry (‘simplice’). A fanfare from the horns and woodwind heralds the exuberant rondo theme of the Allegro vivace with a solo part every bit as treacherous and, let us admit it, crowd-pleasing as those of the two concertos. Kalkbrenner certainly knew how to wow the public.

from notes by Jeremy Nicholas © 2012

   English   Français   Deutsch